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We’re excited to announce that Somo’s Senior Client Solutions Director, Chris Sheldon, has been included in this year’s BIMA 100!
Every year, BIMA celebrates 100 leaders, pioneers and entrepreneurs that lead the change in the digital industry. Chris shined for his tenacity and ability to grow the agency in the face of adversity. Chris has been selected as ‘One to Watch’ in the Business Developers and Marketeers category, and we’re very proud to have him on the Somo team!
He has been a part of Somo for the last 10 years and plays a pivotal role in our London office. We sat down with Chris to congratulate him on his latest award and to find out more about what he does, his favourite Somo product and his dream dinner party guests.
My role is an interesting one, it sits at the very start of our relationships with clients and prospects. I am often the first person from Somo that people meet when speaking with us about a challenge they are facing or an idea they have. Because of this, it’s hugely important that I represent Somo, our enthusiasm, our knowledge, and our skills as best as possible.
One of my key responsibilities is ensuring we respond to those initial conversations in the best way possible, building a bespoke response for each business, and pulling on the levers of our work that represent everything Somo is about. This allows us to show the skills, knowledge, and experience we have at Somo is unrivaled and we are the right digital product agency for clients and their digital ambitions.
It’s also my responsibility to make sure we build the best Somo team for each project, who have the right skills to do the best job possible. Do we need tech skills? Do we need some UI input? Could we be doing something as part of our response that pushes the boundaries of what is expected as a response? Throughout the proposal stages, it’s important to ensure that the team works as one and delivers the best possible response within the timelines created.
There is nothing more satisfying than starting work with a new client and guiding them through those early stages of working with Somo. It’s always great to see a happy client being transitioned over to our Client Solutions team, knowing they’ve had a great experience working with you and are all set for a fantastic project with us.
Wow! Where did that time go? It feels like I only joined a couple of years ago fresh out of university. I guess it’s a good thing that the time has gone fast – it certainly proves time flies when you’re having fun! In those 10 years, I have had the opportunity to work with some of the best digital talent in the world and with some of the biggest and most exciting brands in the world, too. Have there been hard times? For sure. But without a doubt, the good times outweigh the hard times and to think how much I have learned and developed over the past decade is incredible. It’s a testament to the kind of culture and environment I have been able to work in at Somo.
What’s been my favourite Somo product? That’s a difficult question, there have been so many different ones all with their own really cool functionalities. I’d probably have to go with the Audi UK website we designed and built. I didn’t work directly on the project itself, but as a car fan, to see how we took something that was looking old and dated and brought it into the modern era was fantastic. It was one of the first automotive sites to push the boundaries and start to reflect the new digital era that we were entering. It was, in my eyes anyway, a website that set the trend for the automotive industry and the websites we see for OEMs today. It’s also great to see us still working with Audi UK and Audi of America today on their next big things.
I love these kinds of questions. Although, picking three people to have dinner with out of all the inspiring people in the world isn’t always as easy as it seems!
Number one would have to be Ayrton Senna, the Brazilian F1 driver. I love motorsport, particularly F1, and to be able to sit and speak with a three-time world champion would be incredible. He was undoubtedly one of the most talented drivers in F1 history and if it hadn't been for his tragic death at Imola in 1994, I am sure he’d have won many more championships. The way he drove those old F1 cars around circuits like Monaco was wizardry! He was more than just a driver though, he was treated like a god by the Brazilian people and the work he did outside of F1 to make Brazil a better place for its people is often overlooked. Definitely would have a place at my dinner party.
Number two would have to be Tom Hanks, what an iconic actor. I feel like I have grown up with him being in loads of my favourite movies, from voicing Woody in Toy Story back in the mid 1990’s, Viktor Navorski in The Terminal, Jim Lovell in Apollo 13, Richard Phillips in Captain Phillips. The list seems to be endless, so many amazing movies I haven’t yet mentioned. There are many actors that play similar roles, but Tom Hanks has been involved in so many amazing movies playing so many different and varied characters. Above all, he seems to still be a really down-to-earth guy that would take the time out to speak with you about anything you want. I feel we’ve all been very lucky to have an actor like Tom Hanks in our generation, surely he’ll go down as one of the greatest actors of all time.
My third guest would have to be someone like Bill Gates or Steve Jobs. It’s a close one but let’s go with Steve Jobs. I owe a lot to working at Somo for the past 10 years or so to this guy, without his vision of the iPod, iPhone, iPad etc. then the likelihood is I wouldn’t have even been working in digital. He has an incredible story with so many ups and downs, from co-founding Apple in the 1970’s, leaving them in the mid 1980’s only to return to Apple near the millennium and transforming them, before his death from cancer in 2011. There is no doubt that without his vision and leadership, Apple wouldn’t be where it is today. And would we, as individuals and the whole world, even be where we are today without his ideas?