Sadie Schabdach

VP Digital, Data and Creative Innovation at Mitchell

As Dentsu Aegis Network turns five, we hear from the people who have been here since the start about their personal journeys and what they’re looking forward to in the future.

Sadie Schabdach, VP Digital, Data and Creative Innovation at Mitchell, tells us about her experience over the last five years.

Tell us a little about your journey at Dentsu Aegus Network since its foundation in 2013…

I joined mcgarrybowen prior to the Dentsu acquisition and celebrated my 6th anniversary with the company in 2013, the year Dentsu Aegis Network was founded. As my role at mcgarrybowen was primarily focused in delivering digital solutions for clients, I saw the creation of DAN as a catalyst for the agency’s continued digital transformation. In my current role at Mitchell, I am dedicated to driving toward our 2020 digital goal by driving creative innovation and elevating our data-driven capabilities and products.

Having been a member of the network since Day 1, which have been the biggest milestones for you?

The most significant milestones for me have been:

  • DAN’s formation and identification of 2020 digital goal.
  • Opportunities for sister agency collaboration in pursuit of new business and organic growth including: General Motors, Disney, Mondelez, Blue Cross Blue Shield and Kraft Heinz, specifically participating in the 2016 competitive new business pitch and win for General Motors’ Maven, a start-up mobility offering. Serving as the account’s Group Managing Director and leading the creative, social and production team as part of the collective DAN ‘one agency’ offering.
  • The opportunity to represent mcgarrybowen at the 2016 DAN North America conference in NOLA.
  • Transitioning from mcgarrybowen to Mitchell in 2018 with a focus on delivering innovative client solutions and driving cross network collaboration through organic and new business growth.

What are you most proud of?

Maven. Pitching and winning General Motors’ Maven business represented a new way of working across operating companies, but the real magic came in the implementation of the team. The barriers we eliminated and the collective thinking and execution developed and drove client business.

Collaboration with sister agencies and building strategic partnerships has always been a priority of mine and the forming of DAN put these efforts in hyperdrive.

My role at mcgarrybowen provided the opportunity for collaboration with just about every agency in our network, for the purposes of pitching new business as well as in partnership to serve shared clients — Carat, Isobar, MKTG, Firstborn, iProspect, 360i, Posterscope, Amplifi, Vizeum, Dentsu and Mitchell.

I look forward to continuing to build upon my strategic partnerships and to drive Mitchell collaboration within the network.

What do you think are the key challenges & opportunities that lie ahead for our industry?

My journey at DAN has allowed me to experience the convergence in our industry through unique, but complementary lenses — from advertising at mcgarrybowen to PR at Mitchell and many DAN partners along the way.

In the age of convergence we must break down legacy systems and biases that distract from the collaboration necessary to achieve our shared goals. By eliminating the barriers that divide operating companies and establishing shared strategic approach and processes we will win together.

Why is DAN best positioned to win over the next 5 years?

We’re positioned as a collection of agencies whose areas of expertise are additive and not competitive, and we increasingly speak the language of collaboration. By recognizing that we’re greater as a whole than as individual entities, we can adopt a ‘people-first’ method of building synergies and we will prove a superior, fluid solution versus our rivals.

What are you most excited about when it comes to the future of DAN?

Delivering on our potential individually and collectively through knowledge-sharing and collective thought-leadership. I’ve seen firsthand the power of ‘people-first’ solutions driving changes to client business in ways even they could not have imagined. It’s a power that the network can harvest by empowering small groups to eliminate operational barriers and build trust between operating companies — allowing us all to adopt better ways of working defined by first hand experience of our people.