Thursday, May 5, 2016

Honey Badger Do Care

In my early days as a staff copywriter I was told -- on many occasions -- that I cared too much.

I was raised to believe that if I was going to do a job I might as well do it right. So caring too much never made any sense. There were other cliches as well. All equally baffling.

"You need to learn to pick your battles."

"Don't fall on your sword so often."

"I think your works sucks, but don't take it personally."

As I've mentioned on this blog before, that led to a great many heated confrontations. Rightly or wrongly, in hindsight mostly wrongly, I took great pride in my work and what I put on the table.

Eventually the hairs on my head stopped growing. The hair in my ears started. And my skin got thicker. Meaning I became more immune to the slings and arrows aimed squarely at my ideas.

I'm 44 now.
No longer a staffer, but a sniper.
Just a paid mercenary to come in, take the shot, and collect a check.

The wisdom that was wasted on my youth is finally sinking in. I think I've finally kicked this annoying caring habit.

Well, almost.

Last week I was hired to do a job, remotely. I was dealing directly with the Chief Creative Officer. Who was looking for platforms, TV scripts and digital engagement ideas. In other words, my perfect working conditions.

At the end of each day, I would send my progress to the remote location. And at the beginning of the next day I would receive feedback. This is where it gets tricky, because it's hard not to care when the reactions goes something like this (not to violate any NDA's but these are verbatim):

"Great stuff."

"LOL, Love you, Rich."


"FUUUUKKKKKK, these are perfect."

Each of these appreciative quips were followed by a detailed lengthy directive on what was expected next. Orderly, concise, and to the point because it came directly from the top. For one brief week I actually enjoyed what I was doing and had some fun at this advertising business.

I hope that's not going to be a problem.

1 comment:

Warren Eakins said...

That's fantastic. Whoever you're working with is smart and understands how things work and whatever the project is it will most likely be successful. It drives me nuts that things rarely go this way, it's actually easier to do great work when working with the right people. The best of your career could very well be ahead of you Rich, I was 44 when I got the job at Wieden + Kennedy, changed my career and my life. Keep the faith and just keep swinging those elbows.