The Fishbowl: Mark Bucknell, JCDecaux UK

The Fishbowl: Mark Bucknell, JCDecaux UK

The Media Leader’s interview series asks the media industry’s top salespeople 10 revealing questions, drawn from our fishbowl. The questions will be drawn at random and contain some tricky posers set by the commercial chiefs themselves.

This week is Mark Bucknell, chief commercial officer at JCDecaux UK.

Mark Bucknell has worked at JCDecaux since 2006.

He started out as sales group head and worked his way up through various sales, leadership and strategy roles before becoming chief commercial officer in 2019.

Previously he was sales group head at Titan Outdoor (which was acquired by JCDecaux in 2010), and group head at Maiden Outdoor (which became Titan Outdoor Limited in 2006).


**Peer question** If you could click your fingers and change one thing about the way your company operates, what would it be?

Leverage our global scale better.

And be better at widening the understanding of the entire operating model of out-of-home (OOH) — how advertising on OOH gives back to the community in terms of public services such as bus shelters, on-street defibrillators, free wifi and charging points.

Question set by Dave Randall, commercial director at Future.

Name all the streaming platforms you subscribe (pay money) to.

Netflix, Spotify, Soundcloud, Amazon Prime.

Who’s your best friend in the industry?

I made lots of great friends over the years, but between 1999 and 2005 I worked with some exceptional people who have remained great friends.

All have gone on to be successful. Two of them are: Philip Miles, country sales director at YouTube, and Tom Pearman, head of partner development at Apple.

What is one of your greatest achievements?

Helping to transform JCDecaux UK into a digital business — the transformation of Old Street into a long-term digital partnership with Google.

Our Tesco channel was the first ever digital out-of-home channel that combined data and digital.

Readying us for a bright programmatic future that now includes programmatic across every environment where JCDecaux UK operates — roadside, rail, retail and airport.

What keeps coming up in conversations with clients at the moment?

Measurement and effectiveness; programmatic; omnichannel; creativity; sustainability.

**Peer question** What are your top three workplace non-negotiable behaviours?

Everyone has a voice and a value.

A healthy work/life balance.

Collaboratively welcoming new ideas.

Question set by Ryan Rummery, commercial DAX director at Global.

What’s your favourite ad of all time?

As a child of the 80s and 90s, there were so many ads that captured my imagination, but a recent favourite has to be Apple’s ‘Shot on iPhone’ which took people’s iPhone photos and displayed them on billboards in the biggest cities around the world.

Powerful stories, displayed in a powerful way, from a power brand.

What is one non-work-related goal that you would like to achieve in the next five years?

Having recently re-married, I’d like to enjoy seeing my new blended family see the happiness and success they deserve.

**Peer question** As a sales leader, how do you prioritise how you go about empowering your team members to become great sales leaders of the future?

I value an honest, transparent and empathetic culture. I encourage as much collaboration as possible on decision making. I provide as much autonomy as we can and encourage the team to try new things.

We are developing a coaching culture in the team and invest in our people’s development. We recently launched apprenticeships and a new bespoke learning and development programme. I am lucky as we have a plethora of future sales leaders in the team.

Question set by Jem Djemal, global new business lead at VIOOH.

**Peer question** What three guests (dead or alive) would you invite to a dinner party and why?

Phil Knight, co-founder of Nike — to expand on his brilliant book, Shoe Dog, as I’d chat about taking risks, making mistakes, great marketing and sport.

Dr Dre — to chat about an amazing genre of music that has had such a unique influence on global culture for nearly 50 years.

And my late grandfather who was super interesting in his own right having been in the Secret Service and was part of the Bletchley Park Enigma team. He died before he was able to share as much as he wanted and although wrote his autobiography, I’d like to know more. It would be a weird mix, but fun.

Question set by Nick Shaw, chief revenue officer at Ocean Outdoor.

Podcast: Why 2023 will be ‘the year of the public screen’

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