21 suggestions for a successful advertising career

  1. Find the right place to gain as much experience as possible in the shortest amount of time. This may mean a hot-shop independent agency, a large multinational or hopping jobs every 2 years depending on the available options you may have.
  2. Work somewhere that’s worthy of your time and talent. Don’t settle for any job.
  3. Put more effort into your job than expected and do it cheerfully.
  4. Become the most positive and enthusiastic adman in the agency.
  5. Be forgiving of yourself and others. We’re humans and we make mistakes even when we only have good intentions. Don’t allow such mistakes make you lose sight of long term goals.
  6. Be generous with your contributions to the team’s work. Do not try to take credit for every idea you came up with.
  7. Persistence, persistence, persistence. Great work never just falls into your lap. You need to work for it, refine it, perfect it.
  8. If you clearly see you’re going into the wrong direction with your strategy do not be afraid to stop and rethink everything even if it means you have to start everything from scratch.
  9. Discipline yourself to save money on even a modest salary. This will give you the freedom to change jobs when things go bad and will allow you to take meaningful holidays that refresh your mind and body.
  10. Commit yourself to constant improvement. Technology and the industry is developing really fast. You have to keep up.
  11. Commit yourself to quality. Do not ever settle for something less than your outmost best. Perfect your work till time allows.
  12. Your professional happiness isn’t based on the number of awards or how much you make, but on the relationships you have with your colleagues and clients. Treat them with respect.
  13. Be loyal to your clients and your agency. It will be appreciated even by the competition.
  14. Be honest with your work. Never lie or mislead the consumer. If you do you will feel miserable about your profession.
  15. Be a self-starter. If you identify an idea take charge and go for it.
  16. Do not blame others. If you’re unhappy about something take the initiative to change instead of whining about it.
  17. Be decisive even if it means you’ll sometimes be wrong. Timing is everything in advertising.
  18. Be bold and courageous with your work. When you look back on your professional life, you will regret the the things you didn’t do more than the one you did.
  19. Do not overestimate the value of formal education. Most successful adman never had formal advertising eduction. Real work experience is more valuable than any education.
  20. Eat healthy, do sports. Your mind and body are your only tools available to you. Do not abuse substances. Save them for those critical special times when you really need a boost.
  21. Don’t take all advice for granted. Pick what’s useful for you. Make up your own rules and change them at your will.
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