Chris Grindem

Adjunct Faculty Executive Director, The Utmost Group
MBA & BA, Marketing, Michigan State University

View some of Chris Grindem‘s work

Chris has been involved in advancing the measurement of branding and marketing messaging activity for decades. He knows that for creative entrepreneurs, the goal is to measure its ROI, so that marketing can be evaluated like other mission-critical investments.

He believes the emerging cohort of creative entrepreneurs will be the ones to solve this issue. And at CCS, Chris wants to be at the forefront of educating, equipping and mentoring them.

Professional Experience

Chris says:

“I am leveraging 40-plus years of ad agency, corporate marketing, entrepreneurial, and higher education experience to serve the greater good. It’s why I formed The Utmost Group and teach in the Creative Entrepreneurship Program at the College for Creative Studies.

For me, these passions answer the existential question, “What do you want to do when you grow up?”

Professionally, my areas of interest include creative services, messaging efficacy, creative and social enterprises, and nonprofits.

I am an active member in the Detroit start-up scene, and enjoying hosting the best and brightest local entrepreneurs with my students. There’s no substitute for this sort of direct access and exchange between near-peer enthusiasts.

I’ve worked with ad agencies including Leo Burnett, Doner, and J Walter Thompson. Corporately I’ve worked with Goodyear and the Eli Broad College of Business at Michigan State.”

At the College for Creative Studies, Chris teaches as an Adjunct Faculty within the Concentration in Entrepreneurial Studies.

Significant Publications, Presentations and Exhibitions

• Awarded Silver Effie for effective marketing communications with Kohl’s launch in New York City.

• Awarded RAC Gold for innovation and marketing with PayLess Drugs campaign.

• Awarded WPP Atticus for excellence in original published thought.

• Published 12+ articles in leading publications, locally, nationally and in Europe.

• Published 100+ Utmost blog posts and co-created content with others.

• Delivered 30+ speaking engagements locally, across the US and abroad.

• Selected as a professional services provider for Motor City Match awardees.

• Conduct branding, marketing and IMC workshops on a pro bono basis to a wide variety of education, association, entrepreneurial, startup and incubator/accelerator organizations in Detroit and throughout Michigan.