5 Things We’ve Learnt From Episode 1 of Never Mind the Keywords

Unless you’ve lived under a rock for the past few weeks, you’ll have seen that we’ve launched our very own podcast at Embryo – Never Mind the Keywords! Over the course of a few weeks, we’ve interviewed some of Manchester’s brightest and best, covering a range of topics with a mixture of hosts from our Organic, PR & Marketing departments. Of course, we had to start with our very own Ross Green, MD of Embryo. 


Our hosts for the inaugural podcast are Charlie (marketing extraordinaire) and Megan (client services expert), so of course, we asked Ross the big questions – what’s his favourite chocolate bar (it’s a Double Decker) and his best and worst traits. 


I’ve summed up some of the key points below, but there are loads more in there, so if you want to give it a listen head to Spotify, Apple Podcasts or YouTube


1. Leadership is about trusting, believing, and motivating your team, but they need to trust you too


When asked about how Ross sees leadership in 2022, particularly having been through the recent struggles with COVID and the shift to work from home, Ross sums up his approach with three key points: you need to trust your team, believe in your team, and motivate your team. 


Ross goes on to explain that particularly now that businesses are implementing hybrid working models, it’s important that you trust your team to actually work from home. Similarly, it’s imperative that despite the inevitable challenges from changing work structures, that you’re still motivating your team every day to achieve the best that they can. 


You also need to know that your team trust you too, as “leadership is a two-way street”. As the head of a department here at Embryo, this really resonates with me. I always emphasise to my team that I’m here for them, whether it’s a question about work or something more personal, and I trust them fully to execute their tasks and handle client relations without me. 


Being a great leader isn’t about just dishing out tasks and giving feedback, but motivating your team to get the best out of them. 



2. When setting up a business, you need to know what you want out of it first


Ross set up his own very successful marketing agency off the back of a sports coaching degree and a couple of years working in sales. Since 2015, Embryo has grown from just Ross to over 50 team members, an impressive client list, and a swanky Manchester city centre office, so it’s suffice to say that he knows what he’s talking about when it comes to setting up a successful business. 


Ross’s top tips for setting up your own business is to know what you want out of it before you start. Do you want a business that allows you to have a relaxed lifestyle, do you want to build an empire but it means working lots of hours, or do you want to find the middle ground? Without this set in place before, you’ll struggle to find exactly what you want. 


3. To succeed in marketing, you need to make sure you give your all and get the best out of everyday 


A lot of people aim to work in marketing, but we asked Ross what traits you actually need to succeed in the field. His response was very clear, you need to have the drive to give your all and strive to get the best out of every single day. 


When it comes to hiring, I think a lot of managers have learnt the hard way that hiring based on talent vs. based on personality and cultural fit can be a very tricky task. We pride ourselves on our culture at Embryo and I’m pretty certain that we have the highest percentage of really driven, hard-working people, of any agency in the north west. Is it easy to get to that point? Absolutely not. 


To get far in marketing you don’t have to know it all, but you do have to accept that you don’t know it all and work with people around you who make you want to learn. 


4. Success is about happiness within yourself and your team 


When running a large, thriving agency, it can be difficult to not just focus on constant growth, revenue, team efficiencies and beating the competition. But it was really interesting to hear Ross say that success for him isn’t about all this, but is more focused on the happiness of himself and the Embryo team as a whole. 


I think that says a lot about Ross as a person, and this actual care for his employees is what puts him a head and shoulders above a lot of other agency leaders in Manchester. 


5. Jason Mraz’s hit song ‘I’m Yours’ is the key to juggling work


One of my personal highlights from the podcast is the section where when asked about how Ross juggles ‘blue sky thinking’ with back to back meetings and the nitty gritty BAU work, Ross responds with “I listen to Jason Mraz I’m Yours on repeat every morning”. 


It may shock you that he picked this song in particular to play on repeat, but I can confirm he does indeed have the worst music taste of anyone in the office, so it isn’t a surprise for us! 


All jokes aside, this is an important question. As a part of the senior management team, I’m usually found in the meeting room, running around like a headless chicken, trying to send follow ups before my next meeting starts. But it’s equally as important to find the time where you can for brainstorms and ideas sessions. Ross advises finding snippets of time where you can to really find the answers to your questions, such as during the morning commute. 


Make sure you find snippets of time where you can and make the most of it. 


If you would like to listen to the full podcast, please find us on Spotify, Apple Podcasts or on YouTube! If you want to find out more about Embryo, please get in touch


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