While most other Toronto agencies had big money, an established name, or both behind them, Anderson built his successful enterprise from virtually nothing. Rather than wading into the local market he looked for opportunities outside Toronto. Instead of spending the early days developing women, he found his niche with men. The agency's success, really, is the result of his Anderson's ability to see the bigger picture, and that is exactly how he approaches the women's board today.
"You don't want to find a girl that's going to be a star and not know what to do with them. Girls, when you take them on, you have to spend more time and be on top of the hair. You need to constantly tell them what they need to do, how they need to do it, where they need to go and how they need to get there. You have to constantly be there and nurture them."
And this is the evolution of NAM. Despite the fact he built his reputation on men that still provide the star power, it's actually his women's board that now pulls in the most billings. "I have many, many strong guys working internationally. My immediate goal is to have the same number of girls. This is a woman's industry. If you get one name, the world is at your beckon call. I would like to have at least five or six top girls - if they become supermodels, great, but if they just become name models, that's good enough."
Jenn Simpson in
Fall '06 Strut
As for future plans, Anderson is now looking at expanding his reach. "I want to be a voice in the industry. That's where I want to see my company get to. The same way I have helped my models achieve their dreams I want to be able to do the same for others. I want to share my wisdom and what I've learned in my life."
You see, Anderson is somewhat of an idealist. He believes in a fostering a cooperative environment where all of the "legitimate" agencies set down some common criteria. "If you can live with this criteria, we're in business together. If not, then you're not a part of this business. That's where the common voice will come from. That's where agencies will come together."
"I feel agencies need to start coming together as one unit, with one voice, instead of a bunch of voices, where nobody's listening. As agents if we all talk and work together we can all get a better result. All I want is my piece of the pie. The pie is big enough for all of us... I just want my piece."