A view from the bottom
A view from Joshua Dixon

A view from the bottom

Being a northerner down south can be hard at times. Usually, I'd buy a packet of crisps for 60p; now I'm overwhelmed with made-up-stick-an-extra-pound-on-variants, such as pomme de frites slices at £1.80!

But one surprising thing I’ve noticed down here is that, even though you start "at the bottom", you can still work at the top so long as you show talent and a good work ethic.

The week pans out with the larger projects from last week continuing, while time is delegated to pitch work for a beverage brand that I’m helping another Publicis agency develop a UK strategy for. I have a video recording for the pitch on Thursday with the senior account director (who hasn’t done an awful lot of work but is talented enough to speak off the cuff – git).

Unusually, I have a few reactive briefs (that’s what we call the "given to the accounts team too late" briefs, the "f*ck, why haven’t we done this yet" briefs or the "we’re just hard-pressed for time" briefs).

I’m also working with a senior planner on a digital strategy for a product relaunch in China, Taiwan and Russia. This has been a massive learning experience into other markets’ digital and cultural nuances.

Finally, I’m also developing a positioning strategy for a new Barratt London development in Aldgate.

What really matters this week, though, is the softball league match between the (hapless) Publicis Lions and the (awesome) Publicis Cubs.

The week unfolds.

The pitch video gets nailed and sent over to our sister agency.

We head up to Altitude in Aldgate to get a feel for the development: the views are breathtaking and we can see The Shard in the distance along with "the Gherkin". I head back down and head up to my ivory tower of thoughts to develop a differentiating positioning for the development.

I’ve done at least another 30 PowerPoint slides on the "brand that shall not be named" digital strategy and share the thinking with the senior planner who tells me (sarcastically): "Just a few minor client tweaks to the brief. China is now Japan."

I manage to knee-jerk the reactive briefs with some insightful points to help springboard the creative.

And, finally, the big day – the Publicis London Lions v the combined Publicis Chemistry and Blueprint Cubs, like The Rumble in the Jungle of Muhammad Ali and George Foreman. The players take to the field, cigarettes and cans of beer in hand. The Cubs look ready to… well, go on a night out, more than anything.

They look ready to fight, to win more than money – this is for pride.

With Eye Of The Tiger running through my head, the Cubs smash home a well-deserved victory. We all head off for victory drinks – though not my own victory (I don’t play, I cheerlead). We’re a team and that’s the best thing about being at the bottom – real unity that knows no position.

Joshua Dixon is a junior planner at Publicis Chemistry

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