Katie Stotter, Strategy Lead

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Katie Stotter is simply defined as “a phenomenal person with a seemingly endless supply of energy”. She’s a member of our Strategy team and has experience working with some of the world’s biggest entertainment, legal and healthcare brands, along with charities, universities and governments, to inject much-needed creativity and innovation. She loves to work on tricky problems and eats ambiguity for breakfast.

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What’s your work background?

I’ve done a little bit of a lot of things! I started out working in the music industry doing marketing strategy and consumer insight, spent some time at digital agencies, and as a freelancer working on strategy for SMEs too. Recently I was appointed as a voluntary trustee on the board of Pancreatic Cancer UK.

Over the last 13 years, I’ve been lucky enough to have worked across more sectors than I can keep track of – entertainment, publishing, charity, Government, automotive, telco, legal, housing, healthcare, membership orgs, police, EU bodies, recruitment, education…to make new products and services, embrace change, innovate and get creative.

Why did you choose to come and work at &us?

I liked the philosophy of the work–that we have a duty to equip teams to be self-sufficient and own the work once our time together is finished. That means we deliver with clients, not just for them. I like getting started quickly, and trusting that if you put a handful of smart people in a room with some light rules, we’ll figure it out.

What does your morning routine look like?

I absolutely hate mornings, so my morning routine is as light as possible so I can get more sleep. Roll over, snooze x5, groan, get presentable, log on. 

What does an average working day have in store for you?

At the moment it feels like about 7 hours of video calls!

Usually within the day I’ll be planning the week’s making session, and turning the previous week’s one into some kind of output we can build on. I’ll work with the internal team on both of those, and I’ll usually be training some of the more junior team through that work. 

I’ll quite often spend an hour or so working directly with clients to support them in figuring out challenges, or how to embed learnings from the work. I also work on lots of internal initiatives so I might spend half an hour improving our onboarding materials, or supporting on some proposal writing.

What’s the best thing about your job?  

I love figuring out problems, and in this kind of work, that’s what I do! The more variety the better. What’s great is I get to do that with smart and thoughtful people, who take the output seriously but make the work fun.

How has your work day changed in the last year: What new things will you be keeping? And what can’t you wait to go back to?

I spend infinitely more time on calls than before, and the pace of work is faster than ever. We don’t get to spend as much time together in making sessions, so a lot of that work is compressed, because it’s much more fatiguing virtually. I actually prefer not travelling so much, and I hope to continue to run sessions virtually where it makes sense.

I always used to work from home when I wanted to, but working from home all the time, with my husband, in our small flat has meant that sometimes I feel like I live at work, rather than work from home. I’m looking forward to being able to get some separation between those worlds again, and to work in the same space, safely, as other lovely members of the &us team.

Predictions for the next year? What will clients want most of in the next 12-24 months?

I think just as employees are reassessing what they want from work and the way they want to work, businesses are going to be reassessing what kind of a workplace they want to be. This means culture, ways of working, and associate experience are top of the agenda. Perhaps not in the next year, but beyond that, hopefully we will find a little more stability and businesses will be focusing more on evolving and innovating new things, rather than efficiency and protecting business-as-usual through instability. Clients will want a partner that is able to work through ambiguity, and who is going to make the pace of the change manageable.

What is the most random thing on your desk?

Figurines of Homelander and Billy Butcher from The Boys, two medals from dance competitions, and a small plushie Gudetama.

Who was your last email from?

Fiona-one of our designers – making a smart suggestion about the look and feel of some personas we have just delivered to a client.

What is the best piece of advice you have received?

Practice makes progress

What did you want to be when you ‘grew up’?

Olympic swimmer, radio DJ, music journalist, cartoonist (I’m working on that last one!)

How do you relax outside of work?

Dancing, drawing, music, reading, climbing. I’m happy if I’m doing something creative or social and active.

What would be your superpower if you had one?

Never getting ill

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