Industry Profile: Hatched GM Stephen Fisher

By AdNews | 9 May 2017
Stephen Fisher

Our Industry Profile takes a weekly look at some of the professionals working across the advertising, ad tech, marketing and media sector in Australia. It aims to shed light on the varying roles and companies across the buzzing industry.

For our last profile we spoke with Airtasker VP of marketing Simon Reynolds.

This time we speak to Hatched GM Stephen Fisher.

Duration in current role/time at the company:

Seven months

In one sentence, how would you describe what the company does?

We’re a marketing solutions business helping our clients build their brands and sell more products.

In one sentence, what does your role involve?

Ensure the team is happy and engaged, and that we’re creating opportunities for everyone to develop; if I get that right, our clients will be happy and our business will grow.

Within the last six months/year, what stands out as the company’s major milestones?

I can’t lay any claim to either of these as they were achieved before I arrived, but two things stand out over the last 6 months. The first is winning the Sensis digital business - when a digitally centred business gives you their digital marketing you know you are doing something right!. And second is Hatched making it into BRW’s Top 50 Fast Starters for 2016 (which showcases the fastest growing businesses across all industries in Australia – we were number 38).

Best thing about the industry you work in:

The people. It’s such a vibrant, creative and passionate bunch. I’ve met some of my closest mates through work.

Previous industry related companies you have worked at:

I spent 4½ years in London doing what I now see as an agency apprenticeship and then, after marrying an Aussie girl, moved to Melbourne and joined the fledgling agency Initiative. I spent 13 years within IPG Mediabrands, mostly at Initiative, was privileged to work with some amazing people at a time of radical change in the industry. I’m very proud of having been a part of that business as it went through huge growth and development over the last decade.

Career-wise, where do you see yourself in three years time?

Perhaps this is a failing, but I’ve never been one for identifying and mapping out a defined career path. If I could achieve anything in 3 years it’d be to be playing my part in the Hatched story, leading a passionate, skilled and most importantly happy team.

What is the elephant in the room? The thing that no one is talking about – but they should be.

Agencies seem to have a maniacal focus on becoming the smartest people in the room. This is coming at the expense of re-building a completely shattered trust with clients and partners. This focus is going to be the undoing of many. They may well end up being the smartest, but they are missing the point that all relationships are judged first on trust and then ability. The industry has done an outstanding job in eroding trust in itself, but has at the same time been building out services and offerings which clients desperately want. It’s no surprise the corporate consultancy’s have spotted an opportunity, or why so many small marketing services businesses are being created.

Tell us one thing people at work don’t know about you?

I have a really, really, really low resting heart rate. I mean to the point where my doctor questioned their abilities. It’s a good thing apparently.

Top networking tip:

Remember you are playing a long game. Treat everyone with respect and go out of your way to create relationships. The majority of people you are working with today, across all of your professional relationships, will be there for most of your career.

My favourite restaurant for a business lunch is:


My favourite advert is:

Cadbury Gorilla. I’m still transfixed whenever I see it.

My must-have gadget is:

I’m a bit of a DIY nerd. My DeWalt drill.

My favourite media is:

Being a POM, I need my fix of UK news and sports. Right now it’s a combination of the BBC and Optus’ EPL coverage.

My favourite TV show is:

Breaking Bad

The last book I read:

I had two on the go - Sweet Tooth by Ian McEwan and Born To Run, Bruce Springsteen’s autobiography.

My mantra / philosophy is:

When you’re under pressure you sink to the level of your preparation. So do you research, know your stuff, be prepared and have an opinion.

I got into advertising because:

I wanted to be a journalist and took the first job I was offered in the “media” industry.

If I wasn't doing this for a living, I'd be:

A Lego designer

In five years' time I'll be:

A dad of a 16 year old daughter and 13 year old son. Shit.

Define your job in one word:


What's your poison:

Pinot Noir

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