Born: USA with grandparents from Transylvania
Worked in: Has traveled globally for business for several years. Recalls her favourite 24-hour period involved walking from the Eiffel Tower to Notre Dame and then from Tiananman Square to the Forbidden City.
Kristi Argyilan practices what she preaches: that media and messaging should mirror the values of the brand.
She’d also characterize herself a leader in "new world order" media channel strategy and marketing communications that comes from a "center brained" approach to every challenge that underscores a balance between intuition, insight and analytics.
The technology industry is constantly changing, and media concepts need to evolve at the same speed. Kristi has proven her ability to go beyond just keeping up with innovation; she has anticipated technology trends in her work with brands like HP, eBay, E*Trade, Vonage, and Progressive Insurance. As Lead of Transformation, Kristi helped operationalize Media 3.0, and now focuses on product transformation and the deployment of Media 3.0 globally.
In her previous role as a Global Managing Partner, Kristi managed global media investments and was responsible for setting vision and executing a new media model. In addition to her work as account lead for Microsoft, Kristi runs the UM San Francisco branch. She maintains close ties to Silicon Valley.
Dictionary definitions aside, how would you characterize innovation in the work you do? In my work, what really matters is delivering the most innovative combination of talent, tools, data and technology to the organization so more of our employees can deliver innovation in everything they do. In our organizational design, low value work is automated; investments in talent center on bringing a new point of view to our clients’ marketing programs; and data and tools are designed to prove that the right innovations drive our clients business forward.
What role does innovation play in your marketing strategy today? Everything we do has to be innovative -- from the smallest tactical programs we execute as part of our clients marketing campaigns to the largest full scale operating model for our company that includes new sets of data, new technology and new definitions of “marketing.”
Why do people see you as an innovator? I am an organizational innovator. I have the vision and the operational acumen to execute so my conceptual plans can be seen in tangible results and execution. I am brave. I will tackle anything if I believe it’s the right thing to do; knowing that my vision cannot take a straight road as its being executed. I am also naturally curious about the “chemical reaction” that occurs by unexpected pairings of unique minds, skills and personalities.
What is the biggest challenge you face in applying innovative thinking to international projects? Inconsistencies of talent and data sources throughout the industry.
Any other interesting aspects to your international background? My most life changing event was building a school in Oloosiyoi Kenya in May 2010. It was very important to me to not only support the organization that does this as its charter, but to also meet the families in the village (some of the most beautiful people I will ever know) while physically helping to move education forward for a few children.