Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Inside the creative mind (part 1).

 What truly sets advertising apart from most other industries is the presence of Creative People (as opposed to creative people, which you can find in any number of businesses).  After all, how many other white-collar businesses do you know that would put up with not one, but an entire department of haphazardly dressed, temperamental and and chronically late employees?  Having gone through this phase, I remember well how our very jobs were the justification for our behavior -- pressured by constant deadlines, we had to be given a certain amount of leeway, lest our creativity wither under the crushing burden of conformity.  Or maybe we were just trying to get away with whatever we could (most of us were in our twenties so you can add immature to that list above).  

Just one example (I have others that I'll get to eventually):  At one ad agency where I worked, there was an art director named Larry.  Now Larry was typical in that he'd work late into the night perfecting his craft with nary a word of complaint, but felt little need to roll in at any specific time each morning.  Although the business day officially began at 8:30 a.m., most days, we straggled in on our own erratic schedules.  However, one day, an account executive walked into Larry's office, informing him that he'd be needed at a client meeting the next day at 9:30 a.m.   "Nine-thirty?!" Larry snapped back, "I'll have to get up early!"

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