In This Episode: Bill Imada, Chairman and Chief Connectivity Officer at IW Group, runs one of the most successful and award-winning minority advertising, marketing, and communications agencies in the country. Listen to what drives Bill today and why going against his parents’ advice was something he had to do to succeed in business.

Thoughts and Lessons from Bill Imada:

I remember a time when I questioned my interest in advertising. Even members of my own family wondered if any self-respecting Asian American could make it in this industry.

When I had this opportunity to become a contractor, I went to the agency. I was very excited about it. And, and I took a look around and I said, wow, there are no people of color in this organization.

When I told my parents that I was starting a marketing firm, my mother said, “sales! Car sales or insurance sales. You can’t make money doing marketing.”

If you’re a small business, you must pay attention to your audience and who your audience is and what your audience is feeling, seeing, and observing. What are some of their pain points.

In times of crises, there are also times of opportunity.

“Sometimes you have to step back and take it slowly. Step back for a moment and say, “What do I need to do to get this done?”

I feel like our work speaks for itself. I want to be able to show clients what we’re capable of doing, rather than talk too much about it.

One thing that contributed to my success was the realization that I needed to be better at reaching out to different communities and telling my story.

With five generations and occasionally six generations in the household or at work, it’s time to pull in younger generations early to help solve the challenges we have around the world.

Learning is a journey that continues and is ongoing. There is always something along the way that we can learn. Take it slowly or you might miss something that could be important.