Jon Steel on planning

Jon Steel

DON'T STOP INVESTING IN FUTURE TALENT

A couple of weeks ago, I saw a cartoon that showed a line of animals boarding Noah's Ark. It looked just like any other depiction of animals boarding the Ark, except these animals were not coming on two by two. One of Noah's sons, watching as they walk in single file up the plank, says to his father: “I know we have to make cuts, but is bringing only one of each a good idea?”

As part of my day job, I run WPP's Marketing Fellowship. It's an elite graduate recruitment programme, with fellows recruited from the world's top universities to spend a year in each of three different WPP agencies. Each year represents a different marketing communications discipline, and often a different international location. The idea is to create future leaders for our companies: people who are trained across a range of disciplines and who are culturally flexible. The programme attracts a lot of applicants: last year, 1,700 applicants competed for just 10 places.