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40 under 40: No. 20 – Ahmad Abu Zannad

40 under 40 2019

40 under 40: No. 20 – Ahmad Abu Zannad

Ahmad Abu Zannad, regional strategy director – GCC, Leo Burnett MENA

In his current role, Ahmad Abu Zannad oversees the formulation of the marketing, brand and communication strategies for all brands in the GCC markets in addition to ensuring that all team members are up-to-date with all recent knowledge, best practices and trends.

His previous roles include managing director, Leo Burnett Riyadh; head of strategy & knowledge for Leo Burnett Saudi Arabia; and head of consumer marketing at Zain Telecom in Saudi Arabia and Jordan.

He is also an award-winning author and his work includes De-Commoditizing the Ad Industry: How Ad Agencies Can Re-Invent themselves and Enjoy Exponential Growth and Speaking Human in the Land of Dichotomies: A Guide to Leo Burnett’s HumanKind Approach to Building Brands in Saudi Arabia.

He is a graduate of Concordia University’s John Molson School of Business with a Major in Decision Science.

What’s the best advice you have received in your career?

“Never walk into a business meeting without a pen and a notepad.”

What’s the best advice you have given in your career?

Put more emphasis in understanding and mastering your function/discipline than just your industry’s conventions.

What’s the most rewarding thing about your job?

Every day comes with its unique challenges and requires me to learn something new.

What’s the most frustrating thing about your job?

I don’t have full control on how our strategies come to life.

If not this, what would you be doing?

Writing books and turning them into films.

If you had ten million dollars, what would you do?

Who told you I don’t?

Finally, why are you (still) in this industry?

Please refer to question 3.

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