JACKSONVILLE, FL: Newly minted Worldcom Public Relations Group MD Todd Lynch is going on a listening tour to find growth opportunities around the network in his first initiative since being named to the role earlier this month.
Worldcom appointed Lynch, formerly the chair of its Americas region board, as its first MD in early September.
In the newly created position, Lynch is reporting to the independent agency network's global board and is responsible for setting the strategy and direction of the organization. He will focus on enhancing best practices and knowledge-sharing tools for partners within the group.
Lynch is also charged with raising the profile of the Worldcom brand globally and looking for growth opportunities. He is setting up a Worldcom office in Jacksonville, FL, after starting in the post at the beginning of this month.
The decision to create an MD position was made after the network's longtime COO, Daisy Guthin, announced her retirement after 18 years with the group. Sharon Linhart replaces Lynch as chair for the Americas region, while Imma Folch Lazaro was named chair elect of the global board.
Lynch was selected after a 12-month search, led by Hal Dash, president of Cerrell Associates in Los Angeles. Guthin will work with Lynch over the next few months in the transition.
Lynch joined Worldcom full-time from Jacksonville-based agency St. John & Partners, where he was VP of client relations. The agency has been a Worldcom partner for 13 years, and Lynch has been on the network's board for the past six.
For the past year, Lynch has served as Worldcom's Americas region board chair and chair-elect of the Worldcom board. St. John & Partners has not named a replacement for him.
“At Worldcom, there is a high emphasis on partner interaction and knowledge sharing, which can be sharing experience about working across clients or pursuing new business through partnerships,” said Lynch. He said there “certainly is an appetite” within the industry for the deep knowledge and resources across markets that an independent network provides.
Lynch will spend the coming months with the boards in Worldcom's three regions putting together a growth plan.
“I'll be listening to the leadership and understanding where the successes and opportunities are to take things forward,” he said.
The organization expects growth by expanding the number of agency partners in certain geographies or areas of expertise, depending on existing members' needs.
“My advantage is that I have the perspective of being a Worldcom partner and understanding the agency side,” he said. “The challenge will be putting on a new hat and looking at the organization from a different angle, listening, and taking a fresh look at things.”
Worldcom has 128 offices in 102 markets across six continents. Its partners reported total combined revenue of $343 million last year from their 3,286 clients.