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Meet The Team: Chris Barrington

Define “ethics”.

Acting with morality, working by having a clear understanding of what’s right and what’s wrong. But it’s based on my own values, as “right and wrong” can sometimes be very subjective. 

Isn’t “ethical marketing” an oxymoron? Marketing is basically another way of saying “pulling the wool over peoples’ eyes, right?

Marketing is not the enemy, as long as we’re promoting the right product and service, working with the right people (clients, suppliers, etc), and we, as an agency, follow our business values and ethics. For example, in the past, I worked with BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto, because I didn’t have a choice, I was employed by an agency. Today, I have a choice. I’m against coal. Promoting it would be like selling my soul to the devil. I’ve also worked with clients from great companies, but some people I dealt with were extremely rude, reason why I decided to tell them “this agency won’t continue working with you, thank you”. Lastly, if we had to work with a client that has a “dark” past, it would be under the conditions of us being allowed to create strategies to fix their past and create a better future. Not “greenwashing”, but a real long term strategy.

Give me an example of a time when your personal ethics have driven your behaviour.

I can’t provide the name of the client, but I used to have a great relationship with a marketing manager, until she left and was replaced by an “experienced ego-driven” new marketing manager. I went to present everything we did in the past for the company she worked for, and questioned absolutely every strategy I did, despite the fact, we smashed every campaign KPI. Then she started questioning our fees. Our reports. After a few rude phone calls, I asked my ex-boss if I could let them go. He said: “you brought this client, it’s your call”. I called her, and that call was one of the sweetest 30 seconds of my life. My ethics here? Respect, trust and transparency. 

How did you get interested in your line of work? What led you down this path as opposed to the 9-to-5 salary grind?

Just like the Ramones say in their song “it’s not my place”:

Don’t want to be a working stiff, lose my identity

Cause when it comes to working nine to five

there ain’t no place for me. ain’t my reality to me

 

Short answer is, deliver your best. If your best is from 2pm to 6pm, then go for it. If it’s 5 am to 11pm, go for it. What’s right for you, maybe it’s not right for me. We’re all different. Whatever works for you, do it. 

What do you do for fun? What’s your passion, and what would you be doing if money was of zero concern?

My passion is to sing rock and heavy metal. I’ve got a band, and I absolutely love it. I would feel good with myself, to sing in front of 100,000 people. However, in order to feel complete, what I would be doing is helping people and animals. With people for example, my dream is to stop bullying, help people with depression, etc. And with animals, my dream is to hunt recreational and illegal hunters.

What are the similarities and differences between “work Chris” and “life Chris”?

When you love what you do, you’re not working, you’re living. With the right clients, great people around me and value-driven goals (i.e: promote hemp bottles so we can stop using plastic), I won’t be working, I’ll be doing what I love. Again, when I love something, I’m living. Based on this, similarities between work Chris and life Chris are, when I love something/someone, I do my best. And I mean, my best. If a strategy is not performing, I’ll make it work. I might change everything throughout the way, but I’ll do whatever it takes to meet the KPI/objectives. I never, ever, give up. Differences… work Chris likes big challenges, constantly, so I can have some fun creating different strategies all the time. Life Chris prefers to chill out under a palm tree with a mojito, meditating, unplugging his brain.

You suddenly receive $50M to spend on “world issues” – where does it go? Don’t worry about a specific charity or organisation (though you can if you want); just keep it broad.

Save animals in risk of extinction.

Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

Hopefully, standing in front of big audiences talking about how quantum physics can help you become supernatural. Liberating people from anxiety, depression, disease, fear.

Thanks Chris!

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