I know many creative people because I like hanging with creative folks. I meet them when they are on the beach, when they are working or looking for new work. I meet them when I conduct agency reviews. I meet them at events if they come out as well as online.
When I was a puppy one asked me to be his Best Man. Then again he was from Australia and we formed a bond when we were on a shoot on an island in the Caribbean which was supposed to look like Tahiti. The bond wasn’t necessarily from being there but from the fact that on the first day the client told us the island didn’t look like Tahiti. That will send agency folks into a tail spin and the bar.
When I worked in Chicago at JWT there were six floors of creative people. Not six people but six floors of creative people. You wanted to get work done on time you had to be walking up and down those stairs. Face time leads to work on time. Even today.
I also knew how to sell their wares and crafts. Yes creative was and is a craft. A magical elixir. They liked me for that.
Creative people come in different sizes, temperaments and attitudes. Just like most people.
If you are an agency principal and looking to hire a Creative Director, you are not only hiring your future and your partner but also linking your bank accounts. If it succeeds it is all Glory days. If not then the days are not so good.
The results of your search will blend both of your own personal brands and the agency brand into an intertwined Troika.
It can be a weighty choice
It used to start with “Show us your book.” In the Old Normal it could come in a big portfolio. At least 36 inches by 24. You could actually carry it on an airplane. Everybody would look at you and say what do they do?
Every time I took a trip on United when I worked in the show in Chicago reminded me of the rumor that all Burnett employees flew first class. All employees even if you were just there to write a contact or meeting report. Those folks called their moms that night.
I always tried to fly United and they always found a place for my bag even thought I didn’t work at Burnett and rarely flew first class.
I am still carrying a black bag. It has a laptop in in. It didn’t t fit under my seat flying to Chicago on American recently. I was visiting my daughter who is in today’s show.
So how to creative people show you their stuff today? On their own website, or with PDF files on Tumblr or on Instagram?
Is their resume an infographic?
How impressive is their LinkedIn profile? Something you could cut and paste and put in your announcement email to your clients and prospects saying look who we got.
Does their LinkedIn profile offer the promise of a large network that you can leverage for New Business? We all know that strong creative or technology people are the way to grow your business in the New Normal.
How’s their youth game? Are they connected with the creative future or just their peers?
How big is their network of resources to grow and change your agency?
Also how much change are you comfortable with?
How much change are your clients comfortable with?
Let’s walk around the word NO.
If you don’t like to hear things from your account or project people saying the Creative Director wants to write the brief what would you say?
You see, when you are hiring a creative director you are hiring your future.
The future is clear if you don’t look through the rearview mirror.
Connect with Hank on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook:
Watch a video called: I want a New Business Person with a Magical Rolodex.
You may also enjoy this article on Why Finding An Agency is Not an Easy Task.