My boss has zero leverage in the company, and therefore creative always goes to shit because someone in another department thinks they're far better placed to make creative calls, and my boss can't do anything about it to defend the work. It's taking a toll on the work, team's mental health, and overall morale. The company values are no longer aligned to my own, and it's no longer the job I was sold in on during the interview process. What do I do?

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Leave.

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If the creative lead is being overruled by non-creatives then something is seriously wrong and you should leave. That place will never succeed if that’s the culture.

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Metaphorically, I am this boss. There may be a couple of points of failure: I don’t have the title, the clear scope of expectations or accountability, the relationships, visibility of what’s in simultaneous motion in a complex network, and/or I don’t have the budget. It’s also likely that I don’t have executive sponsorship. How am I going to get that? Luck, bribery, flattery, blackmail, charisma, cogent argument, holding the frame, and measurable success in execution. Influence is the hardest part of the job. I probably want to quit too. Help me build the argument, make the connections, sell the ideas, and gain the influence. Manage-up. That’s part of your job. If I quit, it will be your job with all the same challenges.

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I think I worked at your company. It WON’T improve. Without a domineering creative leader, the work will always be subject to an overly democratic system where everyone’s voice in the room holds equal weight and death by committee is always the outcome. You have to leave.

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If you really are misaligned in values, then you should just leave. HOWEVER if it's possible that you just feel this way because of the current development, I suggest you have a candid conversation with your boss about how to address the situation productively. Not about his role or responsibility - but as a team, what can the two of you do to help elevate the stature of creative in your team. I know a bit about this since everyone seems to think reading a GA chart qualifies as analysis... I've always found success in tackling those instances head-on and challenging them in a respectful way that is about elevating our collective work - not about territorial mapping. I've personally shared a tonne of opinions on creative <FROM MY VANTAGE POINT>. I do so often, expecting my creative team to take the nuggets I'm sharing and fold them into their work to improve the net output. I do the same when strat and creative share analytical insights with me/my team. Is it possible you just need to refocus the lens they're sharing with or your boss is receiving with?

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“...and my boss can’t do anything about it to defend the work.” That says it all there. Time to quit! When a company won’t trust or doesn’t have confidence in the creative lead, he/she probably won’t be there much longer either.

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Seems like you know what to do.

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