What is Purple Strategies?

You may not have heard of us. We fly a bit under the radar when it comes to publicity and recognition – and that’s just the way we like it. We prefer to quietly work for some of the most well-known companies and brands in the world. In fact, we work with 10 of Fortune’s top 150 companies on some of their most visible and important reputation and communication opportunities.

Our clients tend to come to us in one of three public opinion contexts: 1) the unthinkable has happened and they need to successfully navigate a crisis and rebuild their reputation over time; 2) new and unfamiliar pressures and headwinds present challenges – sometimes cultural, sometimes regulatory or legal, sometimes competitive – that, if left untended, can significantly affect their company’s license to operate and succeed over time; or 3) the simple need to uncover a fresh, powerful and unique perspective on their company and reputation as a business-building asset and they’re not getting the quality of thinking, planning or activation from an existing partner.

In these cases, our unique proposition is very compelling: Today more than ever, companies are as much political candidates looking to “win” in the context of public opinion as they are brands. So, we combine politically-inspired strategic thinking and planning with savvy, brand-appropriate and channel-neutral activation to help our clients achieve their goals.

And if you’re wondering where “Purple” comes from, it’s what you get when you combine red and blue – as true in kindergarten art class as it is in politics. Our founders, Steve McMahon (former Democratic strategist) and Alex Castellanos (former Republican strategist) came together in 2009 to create a non-partisan, DC-based strategy and communications firm. We have meaningful presence in both DC (Alexandria) and Chicago. We’re oriented toward fewer clients facing significant issues and reputation challenges that we strive to keep for many years – rather than more, smaller and project-based clients. We don’t do political campaigns.  

We work with our clients through bespoke client teams that combine expertise in research, analytics and insights, strategy development and campaign planning, and idea-centric connection/content planning and activation.

Role Overview:                                           

Purple Strategies is a boutique strategy firm that integrates the creativity and discipline of brand communications with the speed and strategy of political campaigns to serve Fortune 500 companies, associations, non-profits and some of the most recognizable brands in the world.

Managing the workload of more than a dozen creative directors, art directors, graphic designers and content strategists across our Alexandria and Chicago offices, this staff member would be responsible for ensuring all client teams across the firm have access to excellent, integrated creative capabilities.

Primary Responsibilities:

  • Work closely with members of the operations team to determine appropriate staffing and resource needs, proactively planning ahead and anticipating future needs
  • Develop and monitor a firm-wide creative resource plan, including monitoring and recommending adjustments to skills and expertise based on ongoing needs
  • Assign projects to and help manage priorities for creative team members (which include creative directors, art directors, designers, content strategists) based on individual strengths and capacity
  • Work with creative directors and other relevant stakeholders to build and refine the firm’s process for creative development
  • Ensure that both positive and critical feedback is provided to creative team members as appropriate to improve our work and provide them with constructive guidance for their professional development
  • Work closely with HR, leading the process to recruit and fill the roles outlined in the staffing and resource plan
  • Help the firm maintain its focus on creative excellence in service of insights-based and strategically-grounded campaign plans
  • Contribute to a positive agency culture, while building positive working relationships with people across the firm to help assist in the achievement of successful projects

Experience, Knowledge and Skill Requirements:

  • Minimum of 15 years of experience in a leadership role within an advertising, marketing, or strategic communications agency or similar client-side position
  • Experienced people manager, demonstrating strong mentoring and leadership abilities
  • Deep understanding of creative development processes across a wide range of executions from broadcast television to social media content
  • Excellent communication, critical thinking and client relationship skills
  • Bachelor’s degree or higher

Physical Requirements:

  • Limited travel



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