Story by: Janath Gamage, Art Director, Leo Burnett Singapore
Recollecting my entire LIAisons 2021 experience as a whole, I finished my third and final session feeling passion-kindled, energized, more informed, goal-driven and most importantly, hopeful.
When I first received the mail confirming that I had been selected into the LIAisons 2021 program, I was ecstatic! But soon after, I was completely overwhelmed when I saw the list of ‘Mentors’. There were so many great names on the list, and it was super exciting to see who I would be matched with. Then I finally got the email listing my three mentors: Judy John, Ronald Ng and Pancho Cassis. I personally, really couldn’t have wished for three greater and more suited mentors for me than this! First, an Ad icon I've really looked up to since my fledgling years. Second, an ad legend from my region of Asia that made it huge internationally, someone who’s been in my shoes and definitely one to follow in the footsteps of. Lastly, one of the most brilliant minds in advertising I’ve come across, and easily one of the best to learn the trade from.
Each session gave me SO much insight into the industry and a ton of valuable learnings to apply to my future in the industry itself.
With Ronald, I learnt what it takes to make it big on the international stage - especially coming from Asia (Trust me, it isn’t easy!), how to receive and give good feedback (Delicately, yet genuinely) and really what it takes to be a great leader - and guess what? You don’t need to be an a**hole to be a great leader! As he said “Be bull-ish, but never a bully!”
Judy took me on a journey with her session! I learnt again and again how important crafting is - from the execution to the final case study itself (literally till the very-last-second!), a bit of insight into the world of PR, to taking on fresh new challenges and most importantly how crucial the people you work under are as opposed to just a popular name board (people that truly believe in you and help you grow as creatives).
With Pancho, I learnt all about setting goals (realistic and tangible ones) and planning my path (effectively, more than anything!), how to grow and improve my portfolio, how to constantly measure myself and to drive myself to achieving my goals, and to keep consistently at that too. I ended that session feeling fully armed and ready!
I ended the LIAisons mentoring sessions feeling reassured, especially in these uncertain times. I can’t begin to stress how grateful I am to my three coaches for taking their time to help guide my growth as a creative and for LIA selecting them for me. It might’ve been an hour or so per session, but I know this impact on me will be for years to come - so again, thank you.
And lastly, I’m absolutely honored and thankful to LIA and the LIAisons program for selecting me and giving me this career-redefining experience! And to anyone who might be thinking of applying for the program in the future - it’s an invaluable opportunity you won't regret. Go for it!