Investing in Strategy – StrategiQ January Conference 2023

18 min read by Charles Craik 16 Jan 2023

Our conferences have been part of our story from day one. Initially a simple day-long ‘strategy day’, these events have evolved into two-day conferences that have grown in quality, size and scale along with our client base.

The conferences take place twice a year: first in January and again in September. Regardless of our growth, the mission is the same: to inspire great people to deliver great work and great service for the year ahead.

Strategy Conference 2023: Watch StrategiQ CEO, Andy Smith, in action – along with the rest of the team, as we announce the Award Winners and much more.

Why January? Why 2023?

Yes, two days, ring fenced from client schedules, and the regular distractions of day-to-day life. With news of an impending recession, you might ask yourself what on earth we’re thinking – putting on what is undoubtedly a significant investment for the company.

But, like everything we do, there’s some clear thinking behind that.

Enough motivation for the year ahead… and then some

As we’ve proven time and time again, you’ve got to invest in strategy.

Meeting in January provides everyone with enough insight to carry them through both the winter months and the entire year.

When we left, we were smiling, pumped, energised – and ready to go again.

When we meet again in September, we’ll still be smiling, pumped and energised by the steps we’ve taken to reach the goals that we’re setting right now.

Here’s a whistlestop tour of the headline items over the two days…

This year, we…

  • crowned six new Award winners
  • welcomed eight new team members
  • celebrated one promotion
  • … even welcomed news of the arrival of a new baby – congratulations Mike Wilson!

StrategiQ Annual Awards: our winners!

We started things off with a bang by announcing the winners of our internal awards programme.

Deciding who’s the most worthy for each it’s not an easy job but every year, the leadership team rises to the challenge to settle on one winner per category.

Each wins a fantastic break away, spending money and a lovely certificate. So who got the votes? Drum roll please…

Category: People’s Champion – Daisy Sturgeon

Finalists: Lauren Boyton, Daisy Sturgeon, Becky Evison

People’s Champion – Daisy Sturgeon

“Daisy is consistently incredible. She is a wonderful blend of ambition, dedication, hard work and dependability. Always eager to learn, improve and grow – which she does, month after month. She is also the ultimate team player, always happy to go over and above to help.”

Category: CEO’s Champion

Shortlisted: Louise Goodthorp, Tyler Webb-Harding, Mike Wilson
Winner: Louise Goodthorp

CEO’s Champion – Louise Goodthorp

“Everything Louise touches turns to gold. Clients love working with her and so does the team. Her quality of thinking and skill has driven the brand service line forward and underpinned all of our great website and marketing campaigns.”

Category: Marketers of the Year

Shortlisted: Dan Long, Elliot Hall, Max Buch, Josh Crawford, Poppy Court, Emma Squires
Winners: Dan Long, Poppy Court

Marketer of the Year – Dan Long

“Dan produces work on another level and I’m in awe of how in-control he is – he just keeps pushing the boat out. Amongst all of that, Dan is always free if you need help or advice and isn’t too afraid to ask for help either, which I really respect!”

Marketer of the Year – Poppy Court

“Poppy always pushes herself out of her comfort zone, has done countless industry talks, and not only flies the flag for StrategiQ, but always delivers on client work and puts hours of extra time in to make sure everything runs smoothly.”

Category: Client Impact

Shortlisted: Duncan Brown, Josh Crawford, Lauren Boyton, Phill Pratt
Winner: Lauren Boyton

Client Impact Award – Lauren Boyton

“Lauren has taken StrategiQ, the CX team and her personal brand from strength to strength this year. From presenting at Dotdigital’s DotLive to winning their Marketer of the Year award, Lauren’s ambition, growth and work ethic continues to inspire me.”

Category: Rising Star

Shortlisted: Emily Berriman, Elliot Hall, Rosie Howe, Lauren Grubb, Dale Olorenshaw, Sophie Walker
Winner: Rosie Howe

Rising Star – Rosie Howe

“Everyone in the agency has noticed how quickly Rosie has picked things up since joining StrategiQ, and she’s made a huge impact in a very short amount of time. Her commitment to training is highly impressive. Her can-do attitude is StrategiQ through and through.”

Standards, not processes – breaking down those silos

“Teamwork is about the shadow you cast. You don’t have to be on the Leadership Team to be a leader – it’s a trait and everyone has the ability to grab it with both hands.”
Andy, CEO

Consultancy is all well and good – but execution is key. How can we knit together our service lines to deliver an outstanding customer experience?

For this section, we reviewed our highlights of the past year – where we’ve improved our processes and standards – and shared and celebrated the wins that moved us forward.

Temporarily reconfiguring the teams was key to the success of this workshop. It’s all too easy to feel disconnected to someone in reality who sits just feet away.

I’m overwhelmed to have been awarded Marketer of The Year! Everyone in the agency has worked so hard over the last 12 months so I was completely shocked to have won. I can’t thank StrategiQ enough for the recognition – it truly means a lot.

Poppy Court, Paid Media Manager (and Marketer of the Year 2023!)

Moving on up – resource update

A look at the organisational chart, reconfigured to provide clarity of who we’re working with day to day and how newer recruits fit into the business.

To boost the energy to further heights, we made the announcement that Louise Goodthorpe, our Brand Strategist, had been promoted to Head of Creative and Brand.

“The company is incredibly transparent and open – it’s great to hear the business plans and insight first hand.” Andrea, Business Growth Manager

Directors for the day (achieving our growth objectives)

We all long for uninterrupted time to discuss what we’re doing well, and where we could improve. Tick. This workshop got tables talking about what they’d do if appointed Directors of the company. The results? Tangible actions of what needs to happen to achieve our growth objectives.

The conference is a great opportunity to reconnect with our colleagues. Today, StrategiQ employs office-based staff in London, the Midlands and Suffolk, and a network of specialist remote workers.

“I really enjoyed seeing the performance plans on a departmental level. It’s great to see how my role extends into areas outside the day to day and how I can increase the impact of the SEO service line.”

Phill, Head of SEO

The agency we’re growing towards

Sometimes it’s easy to become so well-versed in our clients’ mission statements that we lose sight of our own. A great touch base on our newly defined Promise, Vision and Belief.

Feel free to test any StrategiQ employee if you find yourself in an elevator with them. More importantly, call them out on how they’re delivering their brand day to day.

“My highlight was seeing the junior members being nominated for the Annual Awards. They have all worked so hard and I’m glad that I didn’t have to select the winner!”
Lauren, Head of Customer Experience

Mind the (skills) gap – growing together

We recruit at all levels and across a huge range of skill sets to deliver for clients. How can you ensure that new joiners and those starting out don’t get swept away or intimidated with the huge amount of talent around them?

A back-to-basics session on roles, responsibilities, and the actions we need to take in order to stay connected and improve trust.

“I find these Strategy Conferences so uplifting, particularly when we get to be with members of the team from so many different specialisms. The best bit is being able to challenge ourselves and each other about what we could do differently, giving us time to reflect on steps we can take to fully reach our potential.”
Immie, SEO Executive

Workshop: Our journey to award-winning

We love awards. We’re not ashamed to say it. We believe in what they stand for, and their ability to add value to partnerships, to our reputation, and to our team.

And in the past five years, we’ve had a good track record of winning them. But we’re not done yet – in fact we’ve only just started. But there’s definitely a need for a strategy. Over to CXO James Bavington to lead the way.

And that’s all folks…

At least until September, when we meet again. Huge thanks to CEO Andy and CPO Sarah for putting on the event, and congratulations, once again, to all our award winners.

“Day-to-day life is so busy, that it’s easy to lose sight of the bigger picture. It’s so motivating to have time to reflect on how much we’ve accomplished and where we’re going.”
Sophie, Performance Marketing Executive


Take a look at our vacancies to see if 2023 could be the year you make StrategiQ your destination.

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