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March 26 , 2010

The Unprincipled


When I started, or at least co-founded, a small sales promotion agency called Marketing Principles in Oxford 25 years ago, I had no idea about the dramas that would ensue, or the mixture of fun and games and pain and heartache that could be telescoped into 12 short years.

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Man Down Man Up

This book is not about the man who got down but we will focus sharply on the man who hears the cry, Man Down, the Man who is Man Up! That man could be you, it could be me. What do we do when we hear the words “man down”? Are our spiritual ears attune to the cries of man down? These cries go out every day all around us and because we have become…

I needed to get a lot of this off my chest for cathartic and purely selfish reasons, but in doing so, and in my current role as small business advisor/coach/mentor/NEC, I realised along the way that the lessons learned might be instructive as well as just entertaining, which is where it originally started.

The title is taken from the scurrilous in-house ‘newsletter’ our creative department took to compiling a couple of time a year, to debunk any of our employees who… oh, just anyone who worked for us (including me).

We begin the journey in 1985. The key protagonists (at the beginning) all have gainful employment at another local agency, and on the face of it should be content with their lot. But then this thing called ambition comes knocking, and a 12-year roller coaster ride begins.

"The Unprincipled" is a warts-and-all record of starting, growing and finally selling a marketing agency in the 1980's and 90's. Part memoir, part business handbook, part comic novel, it catalogues the roller-coaster ride that was the business called Marketing Principles.

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