Industry Profile: Zenith Sydney general manager Jonny Cordony

16 February 2021

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

This week we speak to Zenith Sydney general manager Jonny Cordony.

Time in current role/time at the company:
Just over four years with Zenith, and as GM for two.

How would you describe what the company does?
We are a media agency that takes brands to new heights and inspires a new kind of growth.

What do you do day-to-day?
Drive passionate and high-performing talent, solve complex challenges, and looking for new perspectives.

I got into media agencies because:
I’m a closet creative who studied advertising, yet as it transpired I got my foot in the door at a media agency and I have never looked back!

What’s the biggest challenge you face in your role?
Outside of COVID it would be ‘People’ and ‘Agility’. People are the lifeblood of our agency, so we need to create opportunities to help them reach their full potential, and to be proud of our industry and the work we do; whilst being agile to the constant change and speed of our industry in order to drive innovation and growth for our clients.

What’s the biggest industry-wide challenge you’d like to see tackled?
Our talent - 54% of the industry continue to show mild to severe stress levels. Some aspects driving this are through resource or lack of adequate training. It’s these things that need balance. At Zenith Sydney, we’re driven to find new perspectives and solve complex challenges, and stress can limit our ability to achieve this vision.

Previous industry related companies you have worked at:
UM, NetX Communications, Carat, DAN APAC and Bohemia.

Who has been a great mentor to you and why?
I’ve had the support and guidance of many great leaders across my career who’ve all shaped a part of my approach to work, resilience and determination. To Toby Dewar, Michael Lane, Olivia Simmons, Kevin Walsh, Lee Stephens, the late Adam Wade and Jon White thank you!

Words of advice for someone wanting a job like yours?
Aim high, work hard, be resilient! Our industry is ever changing, so be determined to learn and build long-lasting relationships.

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

My mantra is:
Strive to be your better… on days that end in Y.

My favourite advert is:
Releasing my inner child and because I love to have a laugh, at the moment it’s the Sportsbet ‘Elite Average Games’ Synchronised Salmon. During COVID, it has to be the ALDI Unprecedented Prices ad.

Music and TV streaming habits. What do you subscribe to?
With young kids and COVID I’ve definitely upped the TV engagement and have subscriptions to Netflix, Foxtel / Foxtel GO and Stan. At the moment I’m watching an eye-opening document series called #AddictedSBS. It’s direct and in your face, but really emphasises the inner turmoil of life for many Australians.

On a Saturday morning you can find me dancing and singing to Disney songs (oh yes, I better mention that it’s with my six-year-old daughter).

Tell us one thing people at work don’t know about you?
Would you believe that my hair looks like Kramer when I wake up!

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