NEW YORK—Hill+Knowlton Strategies has promoted Andy Weitz, US chief operating officer, to join agency vice chair Andrew Laurence in co-chairing the agency’s global corporate advisory practice, as the firm sees an expanding need to provide high-level corporate services—particularly in developing and rapidly-growing markets.
Weitz will initially focus on the development of corporate services for H+K Strategies’ clients in the US region, while Laurence will focus on international markets. The two will be jointly responsible for creating new products and services that meet changing client needs; driving development of a consistent global corporate offering; and spearheading internal training and advancement.
"We are seeing an increase in appreciation for corporate reputation in emerging markets in particular," says Weitz. "Companies--especially those looking to expand into western markets--are thinking about how they are perceived at a corporate level. There's a great appreciation for the importance of corporate brand, and companies are taking a less transactional approach to branding, with more focus on a purposeful approach."
As a result, Weitz says, H+K is seeing stronger demand for products focused on reputation metrics, including its Communications Hub, which is a dashboard providing information on how corporate messages are being delivered to key stakeholders, and its 360 Reputation Monitor, which measures shifts in attitudes and behaviors.
Weitz has played a leadership role on numerous large crisis engagements and high-profile transactions during his time with the firm, and developed many of the consulting and measurement tools that have become the basis for H+K’s reputation management methodology.
Before transitioning into the role of US chief operating officer, Weitz was a senior strategist at Public Strategies, and led the firm’s integration with Hill & Knowlton in early 2011. Prior to joining Public Strategies, he was president of gDev, a division of Trilogy, and a senior vice president at Marsh, where he was a member of the strategic planning team and led US product development.
In his new role, Weitz will report to vice chair of global practices Vivian Lines.