Meet Jeanne Achille, CEO of The Devon Group

Forbes Agency Council members work with a diverse set of clients across numerous fields. To share their expertise on everything from marketing to branding and more, we’re profiling Forbes Agency Council members here on the blog. This week: Jeanne Achille.

Jeanne Achille is the CEO of The Devon Group, a full-service public relations and marketing firm based in New Jersey. Founded by Jeanne in 1994, The Devon Group was one of the first PR agencies on the internet and was early to embrace social media. The Devon Group works with clients in tech, professional services, healthcare, energy, financial services and education industries.

How did your career as an agency executive take off, and what do you attribute your success to most?

My career as an agency executive started as the founder of The Devon Group, a PR and marketing firm. I attribute my success to hard work – lots of it – and a willingness to tackle tough projects that require the combination of a cerebral and creative approach.

How do you keep yourself creative and driven regardless of how busy you are day to day?

I love Mel Robbins’ Five Second Rule: If you have an impulse to act on a goal, you must physically move within five seconds or your brain will kill the idea. It’s so true. Creativity needs to be replenished through constant “large and small” moments that support stimulation – talking to people, walking the dogs, constructing a wonderful meal, creating memorable experiences through travel. My days are long and often spent in front of a computer; if I didn’t design chances to create and nurture, I wouldn’t be able to sustain an agency model.

What do you see as the future of media strategy or advertising?

It’s discouraging to observe how transactional the category has become. We have a dearth of critical thinking as it doesn’t seem to be rewarded. Fast, quick, click is what most companies think makes a difference (it does not!) and talent is trained accordingly.

What is your best PR, marketing or advertising tip for businesses?

Pick a great agency partner that knows your industry and is passionate about your success. And get involved. We need straw to spin into gold and cannot do it without a client that’s equally engaged.