Can good work really be done on the water? Susie and Maggie put that theory to the test during their recent trip to the Netherlands where they boarded the SS Rotterdam and joined other AMIN partners for five days. We caught up with Maggie when she returned for a quick Q&A about their visit.

Q: Where were you last week and why?

A: We were in Rotterdam for the AMIN Worldwide Conference. The theme was “Liberating Brands.” We also spent some time sightseeing in Amsterdam.

Q: Was there an overarching take-away from the conference?

A: My biggest takeaway was that we have to continue to challenge our clients to step away from their view of their brand and remind them of the modern consumer’s mindset—more and more customers are embracing brands that play with and even explode their own heritage. It’s the idea that brand heritage can be brand baggage, because companies are spending so much time focusing on “Our brand must always” and “Our brand must never” that they don’t realize they are becoming irrelevant.

Q: What inspiration did you draw from other AMIN agencies?

A: I was inspired by the passion that our member agencies have for the AMIN network. I had the opportunity to work with other creatives for an entire day to concept ideas for the AMIN brand. It was awesome to hear the very tangible impact membership has had on so many agencies. It is very cool to collaborate creatively and help bring these stories to life.


Q: What was your favorite presentation and why?

A: All of the speakers were very good, and I liked that they were all very different. Daan Roosegaarde was especially inspirational to me because he focuses on social design, such as the Smog Free Project and the Van Gogh Path. His work is truly making a difference.

Q: What surprised you most about Rotterdam/Amsterdam?

A: I guess in my mind I thought the two would be pretty similar, but they couldn’t have been more different. Amsterdam wasn’t bombed during WWII so it is very old and historic, while Rotterdam was devastated during the war so it was rebuilt and is very much a modern city.

Q: Can you share any fun travel memories from the trip? 

IMG_1541A: I didn’t know that Dutch people are the tallest of the Western Europeans. My first clue was when I wanted to see if someone was outside our hotel room door. I walked over to look out the peephole…it was two feet higher than the top of my head.

Q: What was your favorite attraction that you visited? 

A: I can’t choose between the Van Gogh Museum and the Anne Frank House. Both stories are so very tragic, yet inspiring and hopeful. I was struck at the wide range of ages of the people at the Anne Frank House. There is always a very long line to get in, which tells me her story continues to remain meaningful generation after generation.

Q: After the conference, do you believe business is better conducted on a boat? Why or why not?

A: In this instance, I thought it was very appropriate. Since we’re all independent agencies, we face the same issues regardless of where we’re located in the world. So since we’re all in the same boat, it was good to all be on the same boat.

Q: Did you live by pirate law while on the boat, and will you abide by it from now on? 

A: No, but (while holding her tongue) I was born on a pirate ship.

Q: Please sum up the trip in 140 characters or less. 

A: I can do it in five…


For more information on AMIN Worldwide, shoot us an email or give us a call at (309) 674-7747.