How Matt Barnett got ahead

“The best thing about my first job was getting my hands on this thing called the internet. The worst bit was that to go online I had to use the internet PC, which was in a cold dark basement next to the scary guy wearing the MegaDeath t-shirt.”

Name: Matt Barnett

Company: FullSIX

Job title: Group account director

What made you want to get into marketing?

Ads that made me laugh and then made me truly consider buying the product. Oh, and expense accounts…

How did you get into the industry (including relevant qualifications and professional training)?

I studied Business and Marketing at university and also got my diploma from CIM. I think I always leaned towards the pitch/client management side of things and fell into it – eventually.

What was good and bad about your first job?

I think getting my hands on this thing called the internet. The worst bit was that to go online I had to use ‘the internet PC’, which was in a cold dark basement next to the scary guy wearing the MegaDeath t-shirt.

List your jobs to date:

Unipower – Tea boy to the account director and everything in between for the likes of Unilever and Tesco.

Cygnite – co-founder, GAD and then managing director for the likes of J&J & Prudential.

Full time dad for 18 months (yes, including the nappies).

Fullsix – Group account director for Hertz, Reckitt Benckiser, Whirlpool.

What were the best and worst, and why?

Being a full time dad was the best, but I missed the clients and the banter. I suppose the worst was where I didn’t have the foresight to predict the dotcom bubble bursting.

Who has been your biggest inspiration?

Jack Mark was a guy that owned and ran the first agency I worked for. He had amazing drive and ideas. Branson still inspires especially at the moment with trying to beat up Sky.

Who in the industry do you most admire?

For pitching and presenting Steve Baer (Client Services Director,, NYC). How does he do that? For brand ideas within 5 seconds of hearing the brief? Becky Power, FullSIX Creative Director; she also makes my life easy!

What is your biggest achievement to date?

Running and building a business where the buck stops with you is big. So doing this and making a profit is great. But seeing smiles on the face of a client is always a winner.

On what do you base your success so far?

Listening and thinking before speaking. As well as a luck, and my tendency for being in the right place at the right time.

What are your ambitions?

To win sports clients. To learn other languages (we have about 14 at FullSIX London and I contribute only one, mostly badly). Live and love long.

Change one thing about your job:

Get to work outside more. Wireless in the office is fine, wireless on the roof in the sunshine is better.

Change one thing about your industry:

The blaggers and the timewasters…just action it and get on with it!

Change one thing about the world:


What is your favourite brand?

Guinness, Paul Smith, Red Bull, Lexus.

What is the next big brand in your view?

Crystal Palace Football Club? Okay, maybe Lewis Hamilton & Andy Murray.

List your “media diet”:

The Guardian in the morning, emails on my phone, iTunes in my ears. BBC News, Football365 on the laptop. Trades on the sofa in the FullSIX lobby. And an unopened Observer on the coffee table.

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