Industry Profile: Iris Sydney MD David Griffiths

By AdNews | 30 May 2017
David Griffiths

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.

We previously spoke with PHD Australia chief strategy officer Stewart Gurney.

This time we speak to Iris Sydney MD David Griffiths.

Duration in current role/time at the company:

Five months in my MD role, seven years with Iris (Six in UK / one in Aus). 

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

We build participation brands by creating culturally relevant work that we, our clients and their consumers care about.

In one sentence, what does your role involve?

Creating an agency of superstars that delivers world class work.

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

Our work here with Samsung on Rethink Role Models was voted in the top 10 Aussie ads of 2016 by AdNews.Our work for Jeep in the states was the voted the best ad of Superbowl 2016 and latest work with adidas and Paul Pogba in the UK is brilliant – all these personify the iris participation approach I mention above.

Best thing about the industry you work in:

It’s full of life and energy. No day is the same and it drives you to always be evolving.

Previous industry related companies you have worked at:

I’ve only been with two agencies. Haygarth (seven years) and Iris Worldwide (seven years).

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

In a role that is creating the next generation of superstars and respected within the industry. 

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

I’ve only been in the Australian market for a short while but feedback I’m getting is there is a real lack of young emerging talent. This is concerning and something we’re (Iris) keen to do our bit to help change. We have some promising young guns with us and their career development is getting extra care through our internal career management platform Myris. It’s designed to let people take control of their careers and just get on with it – I’ve personally benefitted massively from this.

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

I played professional rugby earlier in life (Rugby Union) and was a successful DJ/promoter.

Top networking tip:

Get out there, be honest and don’t BS.

My favourite restaurant for a business lunch is:

Mr Wongs

My favourite advert is:

Levi’s Flat Eric – an oldie but a goldie.

My must-have gadget is:

My phone GS7

My favourite media is:

All things social. It’s transformed the industry and is the perfect media channel for the iris approach

My favourite TV show is:

Current favourite is always changing. I’m into Suits and GOT at the moment.

The last book I read:

Sir Alex Fergusson’s Autobiography

My mantra / philosophy is:

Cliché but work hard, play hard – sums me up very well.

I got into advertising because:

I had an inspirational business studies teacher at school (Mr Newton-Lewis) he was a legend. 10/15 in my class have gone on to be successful in our respective roles – he needs a knighthood!

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

A teacher. I really enjoy seeing people learning and developing. No doubt this comes from my parents, they’re both teachers.

In five years' time I'll be:

Really proud of what I’ve achieved here in Sydney.

Define your job in one word:


What's your poison:

Hendricks Gin

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