Close this search box.
Close this search box.

Ogilvy & Mather Appoints Agency Veteran John Seifert as CEO

One of the oldest ad agencies has a new leader at the helm.

What keeps a 68-year-old ad agency consistent and relevant throughout nearly 7 decades (from 1948 to 2016)? One factor is good leadership development, which O&M is showing by appointing to the CEO position a person who has been with the company for 37 years, and knows the firm inside and out.

That person is John Seifert, who succeeds Miles Young. Most recently chairman and CEO of Ogilvy & Mather North America, Seifert will take over as worldwide CEO immediately.

Seifert is known for his ability to form strong relationships with clients, such as American Express and DuPont. Other holding companies have tried to lure him away over the years to run different agencies including Interpublic Group, according to people familiar with the matter. However, Mr. Seifert, 58, has remained at Ogilvy & Mather, one of WPP’s largest agencies, according to The Wall Street Journal.

“John Seifert is truly an exemplary Ogilvy citizen. His values and the brand’s values are indistinguishable. And if you talk to his clients you will find a fan club united in admiration of him,” Young said in a statement.

In addition to strong internal leadership development, here are 3 things that we think that make O&M stand out among its competition that might be worth discussing at your firm:

  1. The global chairman shares an office with the creative partner
  2. The company employs a worldwide effectiveness director
  3. O&M measures ethnic diversity

Before running Ogilvy & Mather North America, Seifert led a portfolio of 25 global clients worth nearly $1 billion in revenue. Mr. Seifert joined the agency as a summer intern in 1979. Young, who had served as the agency’s global CEO since 2009, in June announced plans to retire in 2016 to become the warden of his alma mater, New College at Oxford University, the Journal reports.


  • Get the CEO Briefing

    Sign up today to get weekly access to the latest issues affecting CEOs in every industry
  • upcoming events


    Strategic Planning Workshop

    1:00 - 5:00 pm

    Over 70% of Executives Surveyed Agree: Many Strategic Planning Efforts Lack Systematic Approach Tips for Enhancing Your Strategic Planning Process

    Executives expressed frustration with their current strategic planning process. Issues include:

    1. Lack of systematic approach (70%)
    2. Laundry lists without prioritization (68%)
    3. Decisions based on personalities rather than facts and information (65%)


    Steve Rutan and Denise Harrison have put together an afternoon workshop that will provide the tools you need to address these concerns.  They have worked with hundreds of executives to develop a systematic approach that will enable your team to make better decisions during strategic planning.  Steve and Denise will walk you through exercises for prioritizing your lists and steps that will reset and reinvigorate your process.  This will be a hands-on workshop that will enable you to think about your business as you use the tools that are being presented.  If you are ready for a Strategic Planning tune-up, select this workshop in your registration form.  The additional fee of $695 will be added to your total.

    To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $695 will be added to your total.

    New York, NY: ​​​Chief Executive's Corporate Citizenship Awards 2017

    Women in Leadership Seminar and Peer Discussion

    2:00 - 5:00 pm

    Female leaders face the same issues all leaders do, but they often face additional challenges too. In this peer session, we will facilitate a discussion of best practices and how to overcome common barriers to help women leaders be more effective within and outside their organizations. 

    Limited space available.

    To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $495 will be added to your total.

    Golf Outing

    10:30 - 5:00 pm
    General’s Retreat at Hermitage Golf Course
    Sponsored by UBS

    General’s Retreat, built in 1986 with architect Gary Roger Baird, has been voted the “Best Golf Course in Nashville” and is a “must play” when visiting the Nashville, Tennessee area. With the beautiful setting along the Cumberland River, golfers of all capabilities will thoroughly enjoy the golf, scenery and hospitality.

    The golf outing fee includes transportation to and from the hotel, greens/cart fees, use of practice facilities, and boxed lunch. The bus will leave the hotel at 10:30 am for a noon shotgun start and return to the hotel after the cocktail reception following the completion of the round.

    To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $295 will be added to your total.