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What two things help me with my job | Ben Shaw

My friends & family. Their complete ambivalence and lack of excitement about advertising ideas (and especially brand strategy) are a healthy retort to the hot air and headlines we consume on a daily basis in our agencies. Would they really talk about this ‘really PR-able’ idea? Would they laugh at the guff I’ve written in the brand onion? Would they know what the metric I intend to measure actually means? Mine them for insights. Test your proposition on them. Does this line actually make sense? Most importantly they tell me to stop talking about work and actually have a life.

Post-it notes. Nothing is as daunting as a blank page or an empty presentation. Post-it notes are the easy way into starting anything. They are small. You can’t write an essay on them. They force you to put an order, structure and sequence when there is more than one of them. You can move them around. They can be thrown in anger in the bin. You can assemble an entire argument for a pitch in a smattering of post-its. You can stick them where they need to go. I have one on my door, a Korean proverb I learnt from some Samsung work, it reads ‘You can’t cover the whole sky with the palm of your hand.’. Worth remembering.

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