DaviesMoore is Now 116 & West. This is Why.
I started this agency without clients, an office, employees, or money. All I really had was an idea. The idea was that there was a better way of doing business as an ad agency. I wanted to create a more collaborative approach with media partners and production vendors. I wanted that collaboration to emphasize the fact our work on behalf of our shared clients would elevate their view on the role of advertising. I wanted to help businesses see that advertising would lead to remarkable returns on investment. I also believed everyone could have a little fun thinking creatively in the process.
Almost immediately, I had the urge to turn the pronoun from I to we. Just over a month after landing enough work to make the business viable, I did indeed become we as the agency hired its first employee. Internal and external collaboration has been the key value driving this agency since that first employee over 20 years ago.
Looking back over the last two decades, the high-water marks and pivotal wins are pretty easy to identify. But one critical moment stands out amongst the rest in defining what our agency is today: the moment Carolyn joined our team.
Of course, we did not know it at the time, but Carolyn’s skill set as an operator was the perfect match to my visionary style. As she took a larger and more integral role within the agency, our success and quality of work grew alongside.
That was over fifteen years ago. Now Carolyn is entering her tenth year as my partner in the business. She’s the Chief Operations Officer, oversees all our accounts, works directly with some of our clients, is the primary productivity manager, and is an essential sounding board for the team. DaviesMoore would not be what it is without Carolyn.
The impetus of changing our agency name was to acknowledge, honor, and memorialize Carolyn’s role in building this successful business. But, as we began collaborating with our team on this rebranding effort, we realized something we knew deep down: This agency isn’t about Carolyn or me—it’s about the amazing team of people and partners who make us who we are. Day in and day out, our team collaborates on behalf of our clients to do the best work possible.
Today, I feel confident our team is the best it’s ever been. When I eat dinner with my family, we discuss the people in the office, how great they are, and the exciting projects we get to work on together. I’m beyond proud.
In the last ten years, this business has taken on a life of its own—a life for which I hardly feel right taking the credit. We have grown, but our growth has been purposeful. There have been times we’ve pared back new growth to ensure we are going in a direction that was true to our values. Those values may have started with me, but they’ve been refined organically with the ever-changing market and the people and perspectives we’ve added to our team.
This agency is also a product of where we do business and with whom we do business. Our clients are smart, interesting, and constantly challenge us to be better. We’re so grateful to work with clients who not only help us do great work, but also help define us.
Our little spot on the 116th meridian seems like a great way to represent who we are and how we do things. Yes, (Edward) Moore and (Carolyn) Lodge will continue to lead the company, but the company we keep is 116 & West.