Tuesday, February 4, 2014
I love clients
If you read this blog regularly (that would be three people, my wife, my former art director partner and Jeff Gelberg) or even if you just stop by infrequently, you might get the notion that I hate clients.
You would be mistaken.
In fact, while I was employed as a staff Creative Director, I got along extremely well with clients. OK, the smart ones.
I like to believe it's because they knew that despite disagreements or the look of disgust that would occasionally, and uncontrollably, seize my face, I was always most concerned about doing good work.
You might even be surprised to hear that many of these former clients are friends on FaceBook. Or connections on linkedin.com. And that I still maintain contact with them after all these years.
You see, while I fought for good work, I never yelled at a client.
Never had any kind of outburst.
And never, ever, though I often threatened to, gone all Gerard Finneran.
The fact is when I hear or read about the debaucherous behavior, the full-throttle temper tantrums and massive client departures that have brought down other Creative Directors, I begin to wonder why I was ever pink-slipped in the first place.
I never did drugs on the job.
Mostly because I'm a control freak.
I never drank to excess on the job.
I'm half Scottish and that line is somewhat loosely defined.
And I never chased skirt on the job.
I own a mirror.
That is not to say that I was without flaw.
I wear my faults as a badge of honor. To this day, the piece entitled "Why I Sucked at Being a Creative Director" is still the most popular post on this blog.
Of course, it all worked out for the best. Thanks to a good Jewish work ethic, I stay busy and earn about as much as a CD. But I don't have to sit in the painful meetings, CDs have to sit in.
The kind of torturous meetings where a Mitt Romney-lookalike CEO and owner of a multi-billion dollar company once looked across the table and said...
"What you've done here is nice. It's clever. But I think a better visual would be two businessmen shaking hands. That says success. Bring me back something like that."
That guy was a Grade A AssClown.
And knowing what I know now, I'd say that straight to his face.