Talking to Markus

With his personal goal of traveling to outer space before 2050, Markus Dunke’s present focus is on pushing our agency to new heights as part of the management team and studio lead at Strichpunkt Stuttgart. Having lived in more than ten countries while spending over a decade in Asia, he strives to combine culture, strategy and creativity to stay one step ahead of the game. Before Markus came to Strichpunkt in mid-2016 he worked as a senior partner for the London-based strategy agency Truth Consulting, where he advised global clients such as PepsiCo, Heathrow Airport and Barclays. Before that he led the Beijing office for the management consultancy globeone, where he had a strong focus on strategic consultation for major automobile brands like Volkswagen.

SP: Markus, what makes a brand great for you?
Markus: When you don't think about your relationship with the brand, when it's just there as a part of life: From Spotify, Instagram to Tik Tok, Coke or McDonald's, from Nike to Louis Vuitton, Zewa or the Rügenwalder Mühle.
SP: What can Germans learn from the Chinese?
Markus: It’s interesting to think about “what country A can learn from country B?”. But when you do that you have to think in terms of cultures, not in terms of national borders – which is crucial when you’re looking at countries like China or India. So what can we learn from Chinese culture? There’s so much, but there’s one thing that really stands out: courage. The courage to try new things; the courage to just get started and set things in motion; leaving your comfort zone and committing to radical change. The development of Weltmeister Motor is a perfect example to me.
SP: What do you think characterizes a successful project culture?
Markus: Clarity, openness, personal responsibility. As long as those three things are given, there’s not a whole lot that can go wrong. We’ve had so many great projects and great clients, I’d like to give a shout out to all of them here “Thank you!”.
SP: What kind of clients excite you?
Markus: The focus is always on the topic and the task. For me, enjoyable projects and topics always depend on two parameters. First, the collaboration between the client and the agency. And second, the pursuit of excellence, the drive to create something outstanding and unique together.
SP: Are there any specific brands that you would like to work for?
Markus: Everyone with ambitious goals. With people who enjoy what they do. Everything motorsports-related, whether it’s manufacturers like BMW Motorrad, KTM, Triumph or organizers like Dorna, these are very dear to me personally.
SP: Why do you like coming to work in the morning?
Markus: Because it’s awesome.
SP: Why should we be optimistic about the future?
Markus: We live in really exciting times, at the intersection of globalization and digitization, wealth and poverty, pandemic and politics. There are so many interesting and pressing issues and challenges for us to tackle. Let’s get to it!
SP: What does courage mean for you personally?
Markus: Courage needs fear, which you have to overcome. That's why an inspiring vision should always excite and thrill you - but also scare you a little bit.

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