PHD US has announced the appointment of Mike Solomon as Chief Operating Officer. Solomon, who joins Chief Client Officer Stacey DeRiso on the PHD leadership team, is the first executive hire under Catherine Sullivan, who was named CEO of the agency in the United States last week.
Solomon joins from OMD USA, where he was most recently managing director. During his 16 years at the agency he worked on major clients, including a 12-year stint on McDonald’s, as well as Bacardi and Clorox. He is also the co-lead of Omnicom Media Group’s Black Leadership Network, driving diversity and multicultural initiatives across the group.
Solomon is charged with leading PHD, its clients and employees through a time of tremendous change and ensuring the agency is set up for a post-COVID world.
“How do we move at the pace our clients are, and keep up with the demands and challenges in front of them?” he said.
A big part of that will be rethinking the products and data sources PHD relies on to plan and buy media. Agencies need to pivot toward data that’s fresher and quickly available to impact client decisions in real time as consumer behaviour continues to change during the pandemic.
“In the last six months, consumer media behaviour and activity has hit the reset button,” Solomon said. “The only constant right now is change.”
Solomon will also be responsible for operating the agency as its people continue working from home. However, he added that work on national clients like McDonald’s and Clorox had given him a good foundation of how to operate a remote team: “Those teams were always spread across the US and forced us to use tools and ways of thinking that aren’t in close proximity.”