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Executive Director Client Engagement

Client Services
Detroit, MI
Req ID: 10136


Position at VMLY&R

Who we are:

At VML, we are a beacon of innovation and growth in an ever-evolving world. Our heritage is built upon a century of combined expertise, where creativity meets technology, and diverse perspectives ignite inspiration. With the merger of VMLY&R and Wunderman Thompson, we have forged a new path as a growth partner that is part creative agency, part consultancy, and part technology powerhouse. 

Our global family now encompasses over 30,000 employees across 150+ offices in 64 markets, each contributing to a culture that values connection, belonging, and the power of differences. Our expertise spans the entire customer journey, offering deep insights in communications, commerce, consultancy, CRM, CX, data, production, and technology. We deliver end-to-end solutions that result in revolutionary work. 

The Executive Director Client Engagement has full responsibility for the talent and performance of the Client Engagement teams and for the health of the clients serviced in his/her specific VMLY&R office, in partnership with the Chief Client Officer. The Executive Director oversees practice operations including talent development, client team staffing, training, business planning and partnership management. 

The Executive Director is also very involved in current clients and new business prospects, partnering with senior executives at major VMLY&R clients to ensure their business goals are met. He/she works closely with colleagues in creative, strategy, and technology to ensure that clients are able to take advantage of the full power of the agency. 


  • Manage the overall agency practice for his or her office, directly supporting the Chief Client Officer in Client Engagement vision and operations
  • Proactively identify opportunities for practice evolution
  • Engage with C-level clients across the business, developing, maintaining, and strengthening senior level relationships with key clients
  • Expert in understanding and addressing clients’ business problems, and determining how to strategically engage, grow and integrate complementary VMLY&R practices to deliver a vision and solutions to address them
  • Lead extensive and critical engagements with clients
  • Support/provide strategic direction related to client and project challenges
  • Responsible for transparent business and outcome communication to all audiences: internal, external, and clients, as appropriate for each group
  • Engage with other department leads and office leads to enable the capability of the department and execute the agency’s mission and positioning
  • Serve as point of contact for agency and client senior leadership
  • Support new business opportunities for engaged clients and prospective clients
  • Support organizational resourcing based on client needs (communicating, managing, executing) and oversee the management of department head count
  • Responsible for interviewing and making recommendations to hire at the Director levels as well as oversee resources acquisition for all levels junior
  • Model desired client partnership and business leadership behaviors
  • Actively engage in the professional development of direct reports

Required Skills

  • Deep understanding of agency and client financial management practices
  • Strong interpersonal skills and ability to resolve conflict with productive outcomes
  • Bias for action
  • Ability to effectively work across departments with diplomacy and a firm understanding of other’s roles and perspectives
  • Able to view problems in context at the system level and align solutions with the strategic direction of our clients and company
  • Proactive, adaptable, and flexible
  • Life-long learner with demonstrated commitment to continuous improvement
  • Strong attention to detail
  • Excellent organizational, presentation, and presentation development skills
  • Demonstrated ability to operate under tight deadlines with complex business/technical solutions
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Ability to provide proactive and assertive leadership in problem solving, managing financial success of projects, and reducing waste
  • Ability to manage multiple high-level engagements effectively and efficiently
  • Actively contributes to team and department culture
  • Ability to concurrently lead, nurture, and grow multiple clients

Required Experience

  • Minimum of bachelor’s degree or equivalent (marketing, business, communications); graduate degree a plus
  • At least 15-20 years of experience, including large-agency interactive and client-side experience
  • Extensive experience in team, resource and large departmental or functional management of 50+ individuals
  • Proven performance in leading and building effective teams and practices to their best results

The base salary for this position at the time of this posting may range from $155,000 to $390,000. Individual compensation varies based on job related factors, including location, business needs, level of responsibility, experience, and qualifications. We offer a competitive benefits package, click here for more details. 

At VML, we are committed to fostering an all-inclusive work environment that is both rewarding and career-forward. Our Inclusion, Equity & Belonging initiatives, alongside the VML Foundation, reflect our dedication to giving back and making a positive impact in our communities and beyond. Our people are the heartbeat of our organization—creators, doers, innovators, makers, and thinkers—who drive not just marketing, but meaningful experiences that resonate in every action and interaction. 

VML is a WPP . For more information, please visit our website, and follow VML on our social channels via Instagram, LinkedIn, and X.  

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