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Business Observer Wednesday, Jun. 10, 2020 1 month ago

Marketing executive maintains plan — even in crisis

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Peggy Wilson founded Wilson Creative Group in Naples in 2007.
by: Mark Gordon Managing Editor

Executive: Peggy Wilson

Firm: Wilson Creative Group, Naples

Employees: 15

Working situation: 80% office, 20% home

Biggest WFH or WFO challenge: Readjusting to each new environment and its distractions. WFH, college kids eating my internet bandwidth while on Zoom with clients. Four dogs wanting to be pet while it’s thundering out, while on Zoom.

Most important business lesson you’ve learned in the shutdown: It is my primary role to be there for my employees. They are the backbone of our success, and my leadership is setting the example. My support, care, concern for them and their families, showing them how much they mean to me. Taking care of them now; they will support me and empathize with me in droves when we will be in need of it.

How far out into the future are you looking for the business? We always preach "Have a plan." So we work on long-term plans for our clients. We’re currently planning for next season, starting August/September 2020, running through June/July 2021. For our agency, we’re only planning about six months in advance. But we’re quick to readjust and make change as necessary.

What marketing trend will last beyond the COVID-19 pandemic? Online activity: search and increased awareness through virtual experiences. Public relations: Folks will discover the importance and credibility of earned media. Relationships and great journalism are the underlying value in getting published. Of course, we’re very confident here.

What’s the biggest marketing fad right now you’d like to see go away? Moving too fast, [being] reckless and lacking a vision. Cheap shots and being too opportunistic. Additionally, the overabundance of studying and analyzing information. It’s what people need to do to rationalize and interpret how we got here, but with no crystal ball, it’s burning a lot of hours.

How do you maintain your spirit/morale during these tumultuous times? I look up. I look around at what I have built against all odds, and it is worth celebrating. I’m fortunate and have a great many reasons to smile and share happiness. This experience has reminded me [that] life has disruptors. This disrupter is uncomfortable because we don’t have a road map. But I’m ready — and I’m armed with such an amazing team of energetic learners and experts. They deserve positive and visionary leadership. So I will guide them into change, and only positivity, passion and happiness will do. That, and a fresh-squeezed margarita.

Books, articles, TV shows, podcasts and/or audiobooks you’ve focused on: Oh wow, my sources are all over the place. The book I’m reading right now is a very relevant historical nonfiction, Jon Meacham’s “The Art of Power: Thomas Jefferson.” I find history repeats itself in very different ways.

Exercise or stress relief you’ve turned to during the crisis: I think I referenced fresh-squeezed margaritas earlier? In all seriousness, I’m growing a new garden and nurturing my array of citrus trees. Key limes make the best margaritas. Ever.

What are you most looking forward to post-lockdown/pandemic? Continuing my quest for less worry. And in six months, looking back at how we’ve helped so many, supported one another and thrived in new ways and under such conditions. Oh, and movie theater popcorn with extra butter.

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