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ADVERTISING CULTURE

People talk about ‘Culture’ in Advertising as if it’s a collection of loose-cannon ethos held together by the intense desire for competition and success and well, they’re not wrong. It IS exactly like that. It’s intense, stressful, often quite competitive and quite demanding. Ideas and innovation need to come at a furious rate and people need to learn to evolve to the best of their abilities. But once you’ve adjusted to its’ ebbs and flows and are primed for besting challenges, it can be one of the more rewarding careers that are out there.

There are plenty of people who are into the fringes/transitional periods of other careers and become curious about advertising. QUORA is filled with “Will I be a good fit?” or “Am I suited for it?” threads that detail long, passionate discussions where people argue and go back-and-forth on their own personal beliefs and feelings. It can be quite amusing and entertaining to read various perspectives. Most of which have a certain amount of biases and conformations attached to it.

Then there is the matter of the very nature of ad professionals. That is, the sort of people you meet in the workplace. Mercuriality is the name of the game. They are not mellow, middle aged shells but extremely experienced, weathered, opinionated and (yes) brilliant people. They’ve achieved their current position because they’ve made a career out of sorting good from the bad and not suffering fools to the point where it starts getting detrimental. You need to keep up. It’s part of the work philosophy.

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But it’s also great in many ways. Especially if you’re young and hungry for new experiences. You get to work daily with people who are NOT jaded and even at their worst can offer you valuable life advice. Or career advice. Every day is different. If what worries you most in life is stagnation and loss of challenge, then you needn’t worry. You’ll be more than provided for in those two categories. There is an ebb and flow to the work that makes every day challenging as well as dealing with stakes and pressure that makes the job, despite its intensiveness, highly rewarding.

There is also a negative perception about advertising in the world. Most people are aware of the stigmatic perception that a large number of people often quit the advertising field. And this somewhat becomes ingrained with the nature of the work itself. It’s hard to argue with this and whilst a good portion of it may be true, it is also quite a narrow minded view that doesn’t quite do justice to the profession itself. It’s not exclusive to this particular job, it’s more to do with the overall process of communication itself.

Which is to say, the communication process itself is pretty volatile. It can swing either way any time. Sometimes things are smooth and effective, other times they are rushed and haphazard. Learning to navigate through these waters won’t always be comfortable and pleasing and more often than not, you will be tasked to step outside your comfort zone. It is pretty much a given that you will stumble a few times. But in my humble opinion, that is no reason to quit or give up. This sort of passive, backward thinking only enhances negative traits in people and should be avoided. Few things can be as rewarding as meeting your personal objectives and in this field, you get to set a lot of them.

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You get flexibility and the ability to think inventively on how to meet goals. You get to be more efficient in everything: from creative endeavours to interacting with clients. Multi-tasking is exciting and very challenging and success in this field will bring you a lot of confidence and self-growth.

You get to see results of your efforts. In a much more tangible way than most other professions. And that’s a great thing. For the uninitiated but driven, this alone should be enough for them to make the leap of faith.

It’s like what David Bowie said “I don’t know where I’m going next but I promise it won’t be boring”.