The e4m Media ACE Awards initiative is an attempt to recognize Indian media agencies for their work and contribution to the Indian media industry. In its second year, the Media ACE Awards will specifically cater to media service brands. The award-winning work in this area will demonstrate leadership and direction that has helped in moulding the nation’s media landscape.
The agency CEO of the Year was won by Nandini Dias from Lodestar UM. Dias has been associated with Lodestar UM for two decades. In 2007 she was appointed as COO and was promoted to CEO in 2013, a position she has held since then.
“The first lot I would like to thank is my team. I am here today only because you have been alongside doing your bit with great effort, passion and gusto,” said Dias while on stage to receive the award. She also went on to thank her bosses, both former and current, which included the likes of Ambi Parameswaran, Shashi Sinha, Kalpana Rai, among others. “To see you guys in action is something I have really benefitted from,” she said about them.
Speaking to us post receiving the award, Dias said, “Getting any award is great. I am delighted, honoured and touched. We put in long hours, we work hard. Most of the times people are grumbling that people are not appreciated enough so when you do get an award the whole agency is upbeat and I think they all get delighted. I still have to meet everyone (from her team) but looking at the energy and the passionate cheering, I think they are excited.”
Speaking about Media ACE Awards, Dias commented that it was an honour to be considered for an award.
“It has been a great year. My usual big high is if my team continues. If we feel bonded, we feel we are part of a larger cause, it is good. I say this often enough that none of the top 25-30 people who have been with me even 4-5 years before I became a CEO has left. So, for me that it is a big high. More than awards or anything else, it is the feeling that it is a family that we have built together; we trust each other, we complement each other, we fight but we know that we are fighting because we passionately belief or not belief in something but at the core of it we are just great friends who trust each other. And I think that comes out often in our work because 25 brains are put together. Team consultations are an open forum where anyone is free to say what they feel is correct or not. This takes the level higher. Individually we might be an average 7 but the minute we 25 put our minds together we are a 10 on 10. Today’s award was an end result of this.”
Speaking about the future she said that she was “quite happy” at Lodestar. “I have seen it grow and I feel responsible for everything that has happened, whether it is good, bad or ugly. So, I hope I continue to be a part of the Lodestar. The desire is that the top 25-30 people continue to be at Lodestar. Apart from this, there are maybe another 75 people at various levels who have either started their career with me or have always been with me. So the more and more I get a team that stays together, becomes stronger, believes in the kind of work that we do, grows with us, I think I will be happier. We spend 10-12 hours together and if I can engage with them, help them, they will feel good about their work and you will have a stronger agency. I have no other vision than to be a part of a happy family rather than someone who is just coming to work for the money.”