2021 Creative LIAisons Coaches

HyunSeo Yoo & Sarah Guessoum

Creative Leads
TikTok / Bytedance
, United Arab Emirates

Born in Korea, honed in New York, and now based in Dubai, Hyun Seo Yoo is a Senior Creative (Art & Design) and dog lover at TikTok Creative Lab METAP. She spent most of her career working in advertising agencies, including JWT New York, Memac Ogilvy and Impact BBDO Dubai before landing in tech. Her work has spanned multiple countries and regions for many major brands including MARS, IKEA, Amazon, Volkswagen and more. She has picked up numerous awards at regional and international shows including Cannes Lions, One Show, Dubai Lynx. Her work has also been featured in various books and publications including Lürzer’s Archive, Campaign Magazine and, most recently, the Communication Arts Advertising Annual 2020.
Sarah Guessoum, or Guess Whom as many like to call her, is an architect turned art director with a passion for writing and soya cappuccino. Landed her first advertising job at JWT Dubai and has been touring around agencies there ever since. She wrote scripts, art directed film sets, got caught up in shooting content regularly and had a pretty obvious sunburn throughout; up until she moved to Adtech as an Associate Creative Director at TikTok, where she works with her partner Hyunseo to create ads that creatively and strategically connect brands with the TikTok community.
They are both big advocates for pushing young female talents in the region and always looking out for opportunities to be part of an integrated creative community.


“By supporting young creatives and fast-tracking the learning curve, the LIA Creative LIAisons program elevates the standard of our industry. It creates a self-perpetuating attitude among us to pass it forward, which is invaluable. What you can learn from one person’s experience beats anything you’ll find in a book.”
Insider notes from London International Awards’ Creative LIAsons Programme 2021,  featuring coaches from TikTok’s Creative Lab duo – HyunSeo and Sarah
Get inspired by our conversation with the Creative Lab duo, HyunSeo Yoo and Sarah Guessoum, who took part in LIA's coaching academy and shared their experience nurturing the creative growth of the next generation.
What is the ‘Creative LIAisons Programme’? 
London International Awards, the awards competition for creatives, recently launched its ‘2021 Creative LIAisons’, bringing together 150 young creatives and top industry leaders in virtual one-to-one coaching sessions. The programme, launched in 2012, encourages emerging talent to tap into deeper creative insights and connect with the movers and shakers of the creative industry.
What led you to take part in the programme? 
This year’s programme is the first-ever, global one-to-one coaching and networking session for creatives. Designed to develop, educate, and inspire young talents from all around the world. Therefore, we were very excited to build personal connections with the mentees and help them unlock and grow their potential. Connecting with creatives from across the world was quite an interesting moment for us; it expanded our industry knowledge as much as it did them.
Describe your experience in the sessions. 
Each session was one hour long and we built it around the theme of  ‘How Creativity Dissolves Perceived Boundaries’. We took mentees through our ‘Creative Hacks’ when coming up with ideas for multicultural audiences. We met creatives from Europe and Asia who shared similar challenges, cultural taboos, and mindsets. It was nice to see how interconnected our industry truly is. We tackled some of their briefs from fresh perspectives and learnt the importance of open creative discussions for the benefit of all. 
We are looking forward to hosting our upcoming virtual webinar which will run sometime in September around the same topic. So, stay tuned!
How does the programme inspire future creative leaders?
Coaching boosts confidence, develops creative skills, and builds an effective communication ability. These personal real-time, one-to-one virtual coaching sessions got us all talking openly about all sorts of topics and challenges, which then sparked new ways of thinking. It’s a rare opportunity that will hopefully inspire young creatives to enrich their craft repertoire and empower them to come up with bolder, bigger ideas. 
What would you like to say to other creatives reading this article? 
The Creative LIAisons programme and similar initiatives elevate the standard and craft of our industry. Don’t shy away from getting guidance in your career. We all got to where we are today thanks to the support and generosity of our mentors. These coaching and networking events are the best way to fast-track your learning curve. They create a self-perpetuating attitude among us to pass it forward, which is invaluable. What you can learn from one person’s experience beats anything you’ll find in a book.