Wunderman Thompson Germany's Larissa Pohl Named President of the German Association of Communications Agencies
Yesterday evening, the previous vice president and spokesperson for diversity, equity and inclusion at the German Association of Communications Agencies GWA, Larissa Pohl (CEO Wunderman Thompson Germany) was elected president of the GWA. She was officially voted in at the general meeting, making her the first woman to head the association.
For the past several years, Pohl has served as vice president alongside the previous acting president, Benjamin Minack. She got to know the association and its needs well and formulated her goals based on that. Pohl was elected for a legislative period of two years and takes over a well-positioned and dynamic association.
Pohl has a clear vision of what GWA means within the agency landscape. She wants to prioritize talent and technology and wants to push both topics through all units. Technology has become a key factor in agencies. Agencies must therefore position themselves technologically and adapt their know-how. Pohl now wants to address this issue across all departments, as technology is not yet seen as playing a key role at all agencies. Furthermore, agencies have been struggling for years to maintain a good employer image and recruit young talent. The pandemic and the low birth rate of the next generation are not making this situation any easier. Pohl wants to rethink the image of agencies and make it a strong theme of her presidency.
Pohl takes over the presidency from Benjamin Minack who spent four years as president of the GWA. In the fall of 2021, he officially announced that he would not run again for the upcoming term. It didn't take him long to decide who he would nominate to succeed him. Minack says of Pohl “Larissa is one of the most distinguished players in our industry. I have a lot of respect for her integrative capacity and analytical power. Her deep knowledge of the economics of our business and her ideas about the future of agencies make her a truly inspiring visionary. As Vice President, she has already been a driving force on the Board and throughout the GWA. I am therefore firmly convinced that Larissa is exactly the right person to continue to give the GWA a profile, to represent it and to develop it further together with the entire board.”
On technology and talent as important aspects, Pohl herself says “The situation on the job market is becoming noticeably more difficult, and we are all struggling to find young talent and employees. That's why I want to focus on people in the coming years: How do we create an attractive working environment across all industries that attracts new employees and inspires existing ones. And this is also about transforming our product: How does technology change our everyday agency life and our product?”
Within the GWA the following fields are supervised: Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Working-Time-Models, PR, Customer Relationships, Effie Award, New Talents, Political Communication, Sustainability, Product of Agencies, Agency Strategy, Technology. Some of the resorts have been newly established.