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“So what does it take to be a good CD?

Having a highly developed EQ is crucial, which comes with being a good listener. You need the ability to inspire those around you. Knowing what to keep and what to let go of is important. Finally, you need to have the hide of a rhino, or nerves of steel, because if you’re not confident in the decisions you make, no one else will be either.

Unsuccessful CD’s make it all about them, they can also fail if they are inconsistent and struggle to make decisions. Another way CD’s can come unstuck is by trying to please everyone.

The biggest challenge any CD faces is making others in the agency and clients truly believe that it’s possible to do great work whatever the circumstances.

If you’re new to the job, it’s a shift from being all about you, which can be the case if you’re a star creative, to it being all about them, as in every other member in the agency and its clients. It’s an adjustment you need to make quickly - star players don’t always make the best coaches.

The agency CEO needs to feel both supported and inspired, a CMO needs to feel listened to and inspired, in that order.

What are the best things about being a CD? Having the opportunity to create a culture you’d like to work in, being able to nurture talent and have pride in their achievements.  Most rewarding though, is being in the position to convince clients that they’re actually a lot better than they think they are.”

- Warren Brown, Partner at Gutthink & Partners



DAY 1:
Paul Reardon, executive creative director, TBWA Melbourne

DAY 2:
Jason Williams, chief creative officer, Leo Burnett Australia

DAY 3:
Scott Nowell, co-founder, CCO at The Monkeys; director Maud Design



Three intensive days on site feature a series of modules spearheaded by leading ECDs, Agency CEOs and CFOs. Sessions are highly interactive, combining workshops, panels, role plays and Q&As with inspirational speakers. To ensure each delegate experiences a high level of mentoring, practical experience and direct value, the group is capped at twenty.

The Creative Leadership course is proudly presented by AWARD; Australia’s longest-standing and most respected professional development programme for creatives.


Senior Creatives looking to transition into a Creative Director position or CDs newly appointed to the role.

Day 1: From creating to leading

  • Why the hell would you want to be a CD?
  • My journey to ECD
  • What ECD’s/CEO’s looks for in a CD
  • Working with the work, working with people

Day 2: The business of creativity

  • Rising star to raising stars
  • How agencies make money 
  • What does a CEO look for in a CD
  • Selling an idea
  • What a CMO looks for in a CD
  • Managing a department briefing

Day 3: Exploring the CD role

  • How to manage media
  • Developing a production network
  • Building your personal leadership style
  • Do you still want to be a CD?



“Seriously awesome. I feel like I'm a different person coming out the other side of it.”

“Congratulations to the Comms Council for identifying the need for this course and putting it together so professionally. Can not fault the speakers and content. Seeing this initiative continue on will not only help foster upcoming talent, it also has the potential to shape a more positive and supportive industry in future.”

"This was easily the best course I've done in advertising so far.”

For registration information, or to discuss corporate membership, visit or call 02 8297 3800 / 03 8416 6746

Register your interest for 2018