This Dynamic Duo Found Success by Bucking Ad Industry Norms

How diversity and compassion create winning work at Terri & Sandy

Women comprise 60% of Terri & Sandy’s leadership, and diversity is the standard. Sam Salum
Headshot of Robert Klara

Terri Meyer fondly recalls the time she called up the executive creative director at D’Arcy Masius Benton & Bowles and laid down the law. “Are you getting me that birthday present I want?” she demanded. And he did. A few days later, the present was waiting in the lobby.

It was Sandy Greenberg.

Meyer and Greenberg are unique in the world of advertising. They ascended the ranks of the agency world as co-creative directors in the 1980s, when many women were kept from ascending at all. Now, they run their own shop that, despite its small size (50 employees), boasts mega clients including Disney, Gerber and The Hartford—the latter of which just signed the agency as its AOR last Tuesday.

Big brands sign for the Effie-winning work, but also for a culture that bucks industry norms: Women comprise 60 percent of Terri & Sandy’s leadership, and diversity is the standard. Meyer described her team as “like-minded, compassionate and passionate, hardworking people who want to do great work and aren’t assholes.”

It shows. When Meyer heard about the discrimination transgender people face in barber shops, the agency cooked up Strands for Trans, which reimagined the barber pole (pink, white and blue) to mark accepting shops. Within two weeks, it went national. “When you do this for a living,” Meyer said, “you want to give back.”

This story first appeared in the May 7, 2018, issue of Adweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.

@UpperEastRob Robert Klara is a senior editor, brands at Adweek, where he specializes in covering the evolution and impact of brands.