Getting to Know Kofi Amoo-Gottfried

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Get to know Kofi Amoo-Gottfried. Kofi is the Chief Strategy Officer of FCB Garfinkel and joined the agency earlier this month.

1.     How did you get into advertising?
Completely by accident. I was at a job fair in Chicago – interviewing with Bank of America for an i-banking summer internship. I ended up chatting with the Leo Burnett recruitment team between meetings, and got an internship there instead! After that summer, I knew I never wanted to do anything else.

2.     Tell me about your first job in advertising?
My first real job was at Leo Burnett, as a Client Service Associate on the Kellogg’s business. I’d interned there the summer before, so it was great to go back to a team and a boss I loved. Working on Kellogg’s at Burnett was the best advertising school ever – the best way to learn the fundamentals of the business.

3.     What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
“The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.” Really useful for everything from creative briefs to life in general.

4.     Tell me about a transformational moment in your career?
Building Publicis West Africa from the ground up – hardest thing I’ve ever done but also the most rewarding. Opened my eyes to how to run a business, to operations, to finance, to leadership, etc.

5.     What do you most miss about Ghana?
The joie de vivre, the sunshine, and the love of life, food, music, football (the real kind) and family.

6.     What would you be doing if you weren’t in advertising?
An economist or a Sportscaster on ESPN.

7.     Where did the inspiration for the Bacardi campaign come from?
It’s UNTAMEABLE SINCE 1862, and it was inspired by the Bacardi family’s incredible story of overcoming the odds over and over again to keep their signature rum alive.

8.     Sweet or salty?
Savory.

9.     What five things would you bring on a deserted island?
The Shawshank Redemption, My iPod, The Sherlock Holmes Anthology, Bacardi 8-Year Old Rum and The Treble (documentary about Manchester United’s 1998/99 side).

10. What was Carter like in his 20’s, when you first met him at Leo Burnett?
Much the same; enthusiastic, optimistic and generally over-caffeinated. If you can believe it, I think he had even more energy! Terrifying…

11. What do you have in store for FCB Garfinkel?
Fun. Creativity. Passion.

12. What are three things most people don’t know about you?
My fingers are double jointed.
I once fractured my fibula in 5 places playing football (the real kind).
As a teenager, I had a bit part in a really terrible Ghanaian movie.

13. What songs are on your “Top 25 most played” list?
Anything from Bob Marley, early 90’s hip hop; 2Pac & Biggy, Fela Kuti, Ghanaian high-life and hip-life; you wouldn’t know it!

14. Tell me about your favorite vacation.
Verana – a handmade Eco resort outside Puerto Vallarta in Mexico. A truly special place – probably the most relaxed I’ve ever been. It was our honeymoon, so that made it extra special.