Why is it that so many creative directors are nuts?

Why is it that so many creative directors are nuts?

I know of a junior creative team that showed their director 25


He gave each concept a two-second review, saying ’no’ to 22 and ’maybe’

to three of them. He told the team to ’work on these’ and then returned

to playing a video game. The two left his office confused. Being

impetuous youngsters, they returned to ask for further clarification.

Their mentor said: ’A good ad makes my bum tingle.’ So, the team set off

with the brief to produce work that would please an arse.

Then there’s the creative team who succumbed to the begging of a suit

and produced some in-store posters for a clothing client in record time

- about three-and-a-half hours. The account team nearly wet themselves

with joy over the quantity and quality of the work. The team’s creative

director was too preoccupied with lunch to review the work before it

went out. The client, however, showed more interest in the team’s effort

- they bought 11 out of the 17 pieces presented.

When the team’s mentor finally reviewed the work, he called the pair

into his office to deliver his inspiring speech: ’This is shit.’ The

fact that they had helped preserve an already shaky relationship with

the client by responding quickly to the brief with work that the client

liked was irrelevant.

Obviously these two examples are in no way indicative of creative

directors in every agency. They are merely examples of nuts.

I don’t believe creatives should be treated with kid gloves. Just the

opposite. Sometimes they need a kick in the pants. Sometimes it’s right

to raise your voice. But an unwarranted kick in the bollocks, just

because you can, indicates a person with a personality disorder, rather

than a creative genius.

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