Towards a New Normal?

Creative work in the advertising industry during and beyond the COVID-crisis.

Take part in a research project by Bond University, Swinburne University of Technology, and Suits & Sneakers.

Welcome to Towards a New Normal.

We are exploring the organizational responses of advertising and communication agencies to the COVID19-crisis.

Specifically, we would like to learn more about how the crisis has impacted creative work and agency workplace cultures.

We are particularly interested in learning more about how agencies have adapted creative workflows and practices and potential new forms of creative leadership sparked by these innovations.

Also, we would like to learn more about the impact of the COVID-crisis on issues of inclusion, well-being and psychological safety as well as about your feelings , desires and concerns for the new work landscape.

Your participation will help us develop a normative framework of ‘good work’ in the creative industries with the aim to inform industry initiatives and potential policy responses.

In other words: Now is the time to define the new normal!

Who can participate?

More or less anyone who has worked in the industry for a minimum of 12 months.

If you have experience with the big network agencies, even better.

We are keen to talk to the suits as well as to the creatives.

To the planners as well as to the producers.

To the newcomers and to the experienced.

To the full-time employed as well as to freelancers.

You are working in-house for a big brand or consultancy? Then we would also like to hear from you.

In short: The more diversity, the better.

How to get involved:

Participate in a short online survey. It will only take about 10-15 minutes.

Join us for an in-depth interview - either in person or online at a time of your convenience.

Interviews typically last about 45 minutes.

The information we obtain from you will be dealt with in a manner that ensures you remain anonymous.

So: Do let us know what you are thinking - and maybe not saying openly - about your experience.

The Research Team:

Dr Sven Brodmerkel
Sven is an Assistant Professor for Advertising at Bond University. Before joining academia he worked as a communication strategist and copywriter in the German advertising industry, consulting for a diverse range of high-profile companies, including T-Mobile International, Bayer AG, Novartis International, Nestlé Purina and Nokia.
Dr Marilyn Mitchell

Marilyn is an Assistant Professor for Communication at Bond University and discipline leader for Communication, Media, Public Relations and Journalism. Before academia, she has worked in professional communication positions in IBM (USA), Quoin Technology, and Brown and Caldwell. In these positions, she has held a variety of Training Manager and Writer positions.

Dr Peta Stapleton

Peta has 25 years experience as a registered Clinical and Health Psychologist and is currently an Associate Professor in Psychology at Bond University. In 2019 she was named Psychologist of the Year by the Australian Allied Health Awards.

Anne Miles
Anne is an awarded entrepreneurial trailblazer in marketing and advertising and is the founder of Suits&Sneakers, a global network of top pre-approved marketing talent.
David Reid
David is an award-winning lecturer at Swinburne University of Technology. Prior to his academic career David worked for English advertising agency Different as their Broadcast and Content Producer.

Groove Q kindly support this research by sharing it with their network, like in this beautiful video.

Why this project?

It is fantastic that talking about mental well-being is starting to loose its stigma. However, there is still the tendency to treat it as an individual issue - with the effect that solutions are also typically considered to be personal and individual. Instead, we need to think about mental well-being in terms of the person and their cultures and environments.
For example, research shows that psychological safety - feeling safe to take risks and be vulnerable - leads is an important aspect of well-being at work and one if not the most important factors driving creativity.
inclusive leadership is a key contributor to psychological safety at work.

Our task is to learn more about the nature of creative work, creative workplaces and creative leadership during and after COVID. Because our aim is to drive positive change in the industry.
Lean more about the importance of psychological safety at work here.

about Research Ethics:

Participation in this study is completely voluntary and you may withdraw at any time without risking any negative consequences. If you choose to withdraw your participation in this study, the information you have provided will be destroyed immediately.

The information we obtain from you will be dealt with in a manner that ensures you remain anonymous.
Data will be stored in a secured location at Bond University for a period of five years in accordance with the guidelines set out by the Bond University Human Research Ethics Committee.

Should you have any complaints concerning the manner in which this research is being conducted please make contact with:

Bond University Office of Research Services
Bond University, Gold Coast, 4229, Australia
Tel.: +61 7 5595 4194 Fax.: +61 7 5595 1120 email: