Guru is a collaborative crew of experienced big ad agency expats, impact, purpose and brand strategists, design and systems thinkers, connection-creators, artists, writers and designers with an insatiable appetite for constant learning, growth and innovation.
“Who’s Who in the Guru Crew?” is a new series that will introduce you to the beautiful humans who comprise the “Guru Crew,” as we call ourselves.
We’re kicking off this series with Project Manager Amanda Kauffman. Amanda works closely with our heroes at REBBL, Clover Sonoma, The Love Serve Remember (Ram Dass’) Foundation, MAHA Global and Wee Yogis. She’s an extraordinarily talented woman who manages curveballs with grace and inspires teams to achieve more.
We are so grateful for the positive, can-do, joyful attitude that Amanda brings to every situation. And — spoiler alert! — we are very excited for what the fall will bring for her family this year.
You may have met Amanda here. But read on to learn more about this super woman.
Guru: What drew you to your role at Guru?
Amanda: I love that Guru is more than your typical ad agency. It’s a collective of individuals authentically trying to do good in the world. Our core mission of spreading joy so closely aligns with my personal life mantra that I’ve felt at home here since day one.
Guru: What inspires you most about the work that we do?
Amanda: I am truly inspired by the people that surround me at work everyday, including Guru employees, partners and our clients. Their unique talents, creative thinking and strategic output all come secondary to the fact that every person I work with is a wonderful human being. I feel fortunate to be surrounded by colleagues who genuinely care for one another, others and a sense of greater good in this world.
Guru: The role of a guru is to be in service of others, and help them move from darkness toward light. What does this mean to you?
Amanda: I find personal purpose in bringing light into the lives of others and have always been inspired by the gurus in my life who have led from a place of servitude. (We are) Guru takes a unique approach to the world of business by bringing these values into the everyday workplace practice. This creates an environment where I feel deeply rooted in the work we conduct for our clients, which is always grounded in spreading light in the world.
Guru: What fills your human tank with inspiration?
Amanda: Exercise (there is nothing that gives me greater clarity or peace of mind than a long run), being outdoors, being with family… and desserts!
Guru: What is the most unusual extracurricular activity that others wouldn’t expect that you participate in?
Amanda: Every October I visit Salem, Massachusetts with my mom – home of the famous Salem Witch Trials. We walk the trails of witches past, go to group spell castings, get an annual psychic reading, and shop for crystals! It’s a tradition I look forward to every fall and makes me feel connected and grounded to the magical spirit of the world around us.
Guru: What is the one activity that is woven into the fabric of your identity?
Amanda: Surely smiling has been woven into the fabric of my identity since birth. I try to always maintain a positive attitude and uplift those around me.
Guru: What is one stop along your path (planned or unplanned) that helped shape the person you are today?
Amanda: The one stop along this life journey that I believe was woven into the destiny of my being to shape the person I am today stemmed from my life detour (three consecutive ACL tears as a high school athlete that changed my college soccer plans and led me to attend Franklin Pierce University), which is where I met my husband, Cody. He is the yin to my yang – and my greatest complement. We vowed to push each other to pursue personal goals and in our nearly eight years of marriage, that hasn’t faltered. He makes me better and I couldn’t be happier for our family to be expanding this fall when our baby girl arrives.
Guru: We are so excited for you! Describe an experience where you felt most free, alive, inspired and full of purpose?
Amanda: I find incredible inspiration walking along the beach in Naples, Florida in the early morning or mid-afternoon after a thunderstorm. It’s a full sensory experience and that sensation bridges this world and beyond for me. The setting in Naples allows me to disconnect from the usual everyday to-do list and feel a greater sense of belonging by focusing on the meaningful relationships in my life.
Guru: What is the best vacation you ever took, and why?
Amanda: When I was six years old my parents woke my brother and I early one morning and told us to come downstairs. When we got to the living room, it was full of suitcases and they said, “We’re going to Disney World!” We screamed for joy, laughed and probably even cried. When we arrived in Florida, the second surprise was that Nana and Papa were there to explore Disney with us! That vacation remains my favorite for two reasons: (1) The moment my parents told us about the trip was full of the magic that Disney represents for a young child – a spark of pure joy; and (2) I was able to share this “life-changing” experience with my loving family.
Guru: What is your number one, top movie or show recommendation?
Amanda: My all-time favorite show is Grey’s Anatomy. Although, my husband can’t understand why I love a show that constantly leaves me in tears, I seem to connect so deeply with the characters that I can’t help myself! Shonda Rhimes is just brilliant.
Guru: It’s summer time! What cocktail will you be rocking for the next few months?
Amanda: All mocktails for me this summer, which means a classic margarita with salt on the rocks … hold the Patron.
Guru: What is the one book that you will never take off your shelf? Why?
Amanda: NIV version of the Holy Bible. I love keeping my Bible on my nightstand because it reminds me that regardless of what chaos the world has shown each day, I can take comfort in the closeness of God.
We hope you’ve enjoyed getting to know a member of our Crew a little better (we certainly did!). Stay tuned for the next guru featured in the series.