Aug 12, 2006
Two of my great friends are working today. It's Saturday, dammit. What is going on? One of them has been working the weekends (and not in a let's get drinking and partying way) for almost a month. The other one? Tomorrow is his birthday and he's at the agency right now. Why can't ad agencies avoid this? How can organized dudes and dudettes find themselves working because some douchebag didn't program his work schedule right?
When I worked at a bigger agency, I did my best not to slack too much and get my jobs done in time so no one could stay late nor even put a foot inside the agency on a weekend. It didn't cost me that much. I took only one hour lunches, never took breaks if I didn't really need them. Leaving at six was a true joy.
The only time I worked the weekends? When either my boss had no clue of what he wanted and dragged us with him, or... it was an Account Exec that had forgotten to do stuff and well, since most don't give a rat's ass about us and our families, time, or whatever we want to do, he set presentations and meetings asap because he wanted to catch up. Brilliant. What assholes, right?
Since I started out on my own, I have never, ever missed a deadline, even when my clients ask me for, basically, a miracle. And in all that time, I have managed all of them very well. If something cannot be done in an unreasonable time, I will be the first to tell them the magic word: later. Nope. Not a no, by any means. I never say no. I just say... Later. And they have discovered that when I give them a time table, the work is done great and with almost no errors. Only slight revisions come my way, and it's usually that I forgot a minor detail or that they forgot it as well.
Some people tell me that it's the day to day that fucks them over when a presentation is coming. Maybe. But if you organize your team correctly and prioritize, then trust me, there is always a way not to work the weekends. I've seen day to day stuff that can actually be moved to a later day, giving you more time to work on rush jobs. The clue to sucess in this is just team work. Everyone should know what is going on, what is needed, what clients should wait and what clients should be moved up the line.
I always say my ad agency is like a hospital. If you come with a tooth ache, and one client comes in labor, trust me I will bump you up, take care of the baby and then yank that painful bastard out and even give you a lollipop when you leave. Damn, if more agencies thought like we do, we would all be much happier people.
Um. But then... we wouldn't need this blog, now do we?
Posted by Me at 5:18 PM