OMD has expanded its North American leadership team by hiring Patty Sachs to serve as president of OMD East.
Sachs comes to the Omnicom Media Group network after spending 10 years with WPP, where she led the global IBM media account at Neo@Ogilvy and the North American HSBC team at J. Walter Thompson. She also joins U.S. CEO Monica Karo, chief financial officer Barbara Burger and Midwest president, managing director Lisa Bradner on an executive team led almost exclusively by women.
“At the beginning of Q4 last year, OMD reached out to me—and to be frank, I was very happy running the IBM business at Neo@Ogilvy,” Sachs said. “But when they told me about the need for someone to take on the leadership position to run the flagship office, drive clients, build culture and attract great talent, the opportunity sounded so phenomenal that I couldn’t pass on it.”
The new role is Sachs’ first at a stand-alone media agency. And she’s just the second person to hold the title of president at OMD East since Chris Pyne left in the summer of 2015—Ralph Pardo was president from February to September 2016, when he moved to sibling shop Hearts & Science, where he led the AT&T account.
In addition to her agency experience, which includes a stint as vp of marketing at DigitasLBi, Sachs also worked in the marketing departments of several prominent financial institutions like Chase and UBS. She told Adweek that client-side experience informs leadership roles.
“When you only have agency experience, you don’t get a sense of what clients have to go through in working with you,” she added.
Sachs said her greatest challenge now lies in “breaking down the traditional agency model” by bringing content, media, data and technology together while simultaneously attracting and retaining top talent. “The convergence is now, and OMD is on that,” she said. “That’s what really excites me.”
Addressing the recent string of media agency reviews by major brands around the world, including former OMD client Lowe’s, Sachs said, “My philosophy is that complacency is not an option. We always need to be one step ahead with existing clients as well as those we are looking to bring into our mix.”