Imagine a career VIP pass. One that gets work of a higher calibre. You have some trophies in your office. You go to the really good industry parties and travel to award shows in exotic locations. You are the person who made your brand famous. You are the one that made that thing that people talk about happen. Companies compete to hire you.  You have a legacy. You are something of a legend.   

All you had to do was be nice. Brave and nice.  

Anyone who’s spent a minute in the business has an asshole client story. Starring that person who makes you cry and gets work that’s just good enough and safe enough to keep the yelling and abuse to a minimum. On Creative Airlines they will forever fly economy. At the back of the plane. Next to the toilet. But hey, fuck those guys, let’s talk about the VIPs up front.  

Be it spiritual, maternal, fraternal, romantic, meditative, or marketing, the most powerful force in the universe is love. Let love promote you to VIP.  Be genuinely excited to be working with the teams – yours and theirs. Inspire, encourage, guide, and radiate good vibes. Tell the truth. Have everybody’s back. And most of all, trust.

Bravery is just another kind of love. Love for yourself. Belief in yourself. Belief in the people who are helping you and the ideas that are being created, to the extent that you are empowered to defend them with a song in your heart and smile on your face. And a touch of selective hearing.

Do you think legendary work was created by people who hated each other? No! If you haven’t seen the Netflix documentary “Dude Where’s My Jet?” about an 80’s Pepsi campaign that went astray, well it’s pretty good. Kind of a by-the-numbers narrative featuring the little guy who takes on Madison Avenue and the corporate stooges at Pepsi. But what I noticed in the interviews is the genuine affection that still exists between the long-retired clients and creatives about 37 years later. Say what you will about the cola wars of the 1980’s (if you were even born then) but those were damn good ads. Clearly made by people who liked each other.  

Which brings up another point. Getting into the client VIP also means working with an agency with a matching culture. Where people go to work for the love of it, not the fear of it. It’s not utopia, everybody has bad days but the whole thing won’t work unless there’s that goodness on either side of the equation.  

We have a client who is about to launch a new brand. Everybody in the agency is so into their success. Every account person works harder for them, every creative on the team thinks about them when they could be thinking about something else – like whether they already put in the conditioner. It’s because the client loves our work, and we love that client right back. Simple as that.  

They will get our best. Maybe we’ll all win some awards, sell a shit ton of product, make a brand famous and get our client that VIP pass. One thing’s for sure, we’ll do it for love.