Stephen Wright is Managing Director of AZIONE, a bi-coastal creative agency rooted in public relations comprised of creative agents, big thinkers and storytellers. He possesses more than a decade of experience and proven track record of delivering high-impact results across multiple disciplines within the business and lifestyle spheres. Wright’s leadership has led to the successful execution of national publicity campaigns that resonate with consumers, media and social influencers, secure high-impact, resounding media coverage, and exceed client expectations time-and-time again. Working with a wide variety of clientele ranging from celebrated heritage brands to today’s most beloved startups including, Jaguar/Land Rover, Keds, Marvel Entertainment, Equinox, Cole Haan, MedMen, Sakara Life, Heyday, Sweetgreen, Ritual, Girlboss, Simplehuman, Moon Juice, and more, Wright maintains a steadfast fascination with creative brand building and a precise, yet results-driven approach to strategy/campaign development and execution, business + brand storytelling, executive profiling, and experiential activations.
My Goal of the Day: Bring to mind one aspect of your life that fills you with happiness and gratitude.
My Thought of the Day: An important rule to live by that we often forget is to treat others the way you want to be treated--in business and in life.
My Action of the Day: Newton’s first law of motion reminds us that an object in motion stays in motion. Always continue to move forward and remember that if you put your mind to it you can will anything into reality.
What do you love most about Your City?
Access. New York City is truly the city that never sleeps and one of the few places in the world that you can book a workout class any hour of the day or go shopping for a dress shirt at midnight. It’s also center stage for the world’s most fascinating companies, spanning from pre-launch brands to publicly-traded corporations. As the epicenter of the media world, it’s an ideal home for anyone immersed in public relations who has a passion for what’s next in the industry.
Favorite breakfast meal & restaurant?
Hands down – the omelet and ambiance at Jeffrey’s Grocery in the West Village is second to none. They have the best breakfast/brunch food in Manhattan and a cozy, inviting vibe that draws in a really eclectic crowd—including an occasional SNL star here and there.
What are you doing at:
6:00 AM – My alarm goes off and I spend five to ten minutes oscillating between the NY Times app, Instagram, and Glossy.co to get caught up on the morning’s news before starting my day. I’m usually out the door by 6:30am—gym bag in tow—to make it to my 7:00am CrossFit class, a ritual that I’ve come to depend on to provide intense fitness training, deep-rooted friendships, and mental clarity that really stays with me throughout the day. When I’m looking to mix it up, I also enjoy HIIT classes at Equinox, Barry’s Bootcamp, SoulCycle, and running while listening to a solid playlist on Spotify or podcast on leadership or entrepreneurship.
10:00 AM – On Mondays we have our all-hands internal where I meet with our team to discuss the week ahead. This includes everything from discussing event activations on the horizon, mapping out client strategy, brainstorming larger trend pitches, company-wide initiatives, and more. At AZIONE, we function much more like a newsroom and find that our most impactful successes come as a result of the fervent sharing of ideas and culmination of the team’s collective knowledge across different categories.
This is also when I typically check-in with our co-founders, who are based in Los Angeles and are just starting their day. We are in constant contact, but we always use their drive time in to our LA office located in Culver City to connect on priority items for the day and divide and conquer. We’re extremely in sync despite the time difference.
12:00 PM - Favorite Power Lunch spot/meal?
Our office is in the heart of Tribeca and within walking distance to two inherently different, yet well-equipped power lunch spots depending on your audience. For the more formal downtown lunch meeting, my go-to is Sant Ambroeus in Soho. It’s the perfect setting for a casual coffee or salad while connecting editors with clients or meeting with potential partners. For the post-workout and wellness-minded crowd, I love Two Hands on Church St., which marries a certain Aussie charm with an avo-toast-laden menu making it a warm and intimate spot for meeting with clients or connecting with team members for 1:1 time outside of the office. You can’t seem to make it out of either spot without running into a former colleague, brand founder, editor, or VC, which makes it a fun place to congregate. You never know who you’ll meet or what opportunity might be sitting two tables down.
7:00 PM – My nights differ greatly. At this time, I’m usually wrapping up emails and checking in with our LA team before heading out to dinner with friends or attending client activations. Living in NYC, there is always a new restaurant to discover or fun to be had.
11:00 PM – I usually use the window of 10:30pm – midnight to wind down before bed. This consists of the random Netflix series, podcast episodes (Girlboss Radio, How I Built This, Fat Mascara, and Hurdle to name a few), and reading, which ranges from Fast Company, Chuck Palahniuk novels, or comic books based on my mood. I’ve been reading Marvel comic books since I was a kid, and having once represented them, still love to keep up to speed on the storylines. It’s still fun to escape into that world of fantasy and something I think I’ll always cherish as a hobby and interest.
What drink do you need to get through the day and at the end (and how many)?
I’m addicted to La Colombe iced coffee – pure black with no milk or sweetener.
Most used App/Favorite Instagram Account?
INSCAPE – I was introduced to meditation by our co-founder Leland two years ago and have used it as a tool for stress management, mental focus, and mindfulness. INSCAPE is the best because it serves you personalized playlists and the combination of meditation and breathwork is super effective.
What should everyone try at least once?
Embark on an international retreat with people you’ve never met before.
Where do you enjoy getting lost?
The ocean – During the summer, I spend weekends in Fire Island and always make time to venture off to the beach at night to stare at the stars. When you live and work in Manhattan, it’s easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle of the city and it’s enriching to reconnect with nature and yourself.
My Deed of the Day: Working with a team of more than 35 employees, I make it a point to express gratitude and commend incredible work on a daily basis. Communication is key and sharing positive energy is contagious.
My Daily Tip: Find mental clarity by focusing on your intentions for the day and learn how to block out distractions by putting up a force field between you and the noise of the outside world.