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January 9, 2014
David Jones Leaves Havas for Startup
One thing that AdLand has no shortage of is thought leaders. But what about those movers and shakers who actually are in the midst of changing the way our industry works?

We thoroughly enjoy reading and watching those leaders who talk and act in real ways, rather than the way many others chase the "shiny objects" that are prone to capture the masses.

No offense, CES.

We also enjoy watching the heads of the huge holding companies. As they pose their ideas for the future of advertising and position their companies to be bigger or more profitable than the others, real issues and interesting facts come to the surface.

And to our dismay, our industry is losing yet another rising star. David Jones, the global CEO of Havas, has decided to leave his post and be the CEO and co-founder of a tech startup company that gets out of stealth mode next month.

We shouldn't be surprised that Jones was lured to the startup world. The startup culture seduces those who want to change the way "mainstream" operates. Jones fits that profile.

In the AdAge article, Jones is quoted as saying that his passion for social responsibility drove him to this venture. So you're telling us that Jones, in an extremely influential post in an holding company, had to leave the advertising world to pioneer social responsibility and social good?

What's the real story here?

Of course, we've seen this before. In 2010, creative leader Alex Bogusky left his post at CP+B in order to start two different ventures that dealt with social sustainability and responsibility.

It is clear that big agencies need a culture adjustment. If these people — people who care about doing good and being influential — can't do that in bigger advertising organizations, what message are we trying to send?

As our industry continues to shift, we need to keep minds like these.

In any case, best wishes, David Jones. We hope to see you back influencing the advertising world very soon.

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Dwayne W. Waite Jr. is partner and principal at JDW: The Charlotte Agency, a marketing and advertising shop in Charlotte, NC. He enjoys consumer behavior, economics, and football.
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