We recently caught up with Ed Richards, now Board Communications Director at Leo Burnett, and asked him what he got out of his TIE experience in March 2009. This is what he said:

‘TIE taught/gave me some invaluable skills that helped me make this transition…

  • Having the confidence in my own abilities: TIE taught me this in spades. I was operating well outside my comfort zone, totally in charge of the project, with no access to my usual peer group.
  • Doing stuff I didn’t think I could: So on my TIE project, I got to develop the strategy (usually the job of a planner), create a media plan (usually the job of a media agency), put forward a PR agenda (usually the responsibility of a PR agency), manage the production of the advertising (usually the job of a tv/radio/print producer), etc.
  • Having more of an impact than I ever thought I would: This was one of the most eye-opening aspects of my TIE placement. Not just from the advertising course students I worked with, but inspiring students from other courses who subsequently wanted to change to advertising, students from other universities wanting to change establishment to AESO, as well employers saying they wanted to hire the students once they’d graduated…all due to the exposure & experienced they’d gained from working with a Western ad agency. Just shows you shouldn’t under-estimate your own abilities or the impact you can have on people.All this was laddered up to some real character-building stuff for me. On my return to England I noticed a big change in my confidence, as well as the way I approached my client’s business & associated complex communications problems. My promotion was in recognition of this & the work I delivered in Brazil, which in the end (thankfully) turned out to be an effective communications campaign that delivered against the client’s business objectives & the challenging targets they set.’

Thank you so much for this feedback Ed. Hearing stories like this just confirms we are onto a very good thing.