One Day @ an Ad Agency!

Wondering what a typical ‘ad-wallah’s day @work is?
Lemme try and capture the madness in the post (there’s absolutely no method to this madness… so stop hunting for one, RIGHT NOW!)

Our days, mostly often begin after 11 am… even though technically, we are supposed to present in the office by 10 am. And we are, physically at least. Then comes the chai, the newspaper, catching up on some gossip, a smoke break thrown in for some inspiration… add another chai to the list, and then we get to our desk! Work still does not begin though! We switch on computer, go on to Google Chrome, login to Gmail/ Gtalk, Facebook… add a few comments, update your status…  THEN we move on to our official inbox! Whoa! 20 pending mails – including one from the boss’s boss.. asking you about last night’s project! Shit! Another smoke break man (PS: smoke breaks also include non-smokers who are there just for the gossip under the pretext of ‘ideating’ ;)
Get back to the desk and decide to get the team together to ideate / brainstorm… blah blah blah! Opppsies! Lunch time already!!! Gotta go… tummy calling! :)
Lunch breaks mostly last for an hour… again coupled with a few snide remarks about our bosses, bitching about that new intern who has just joined us and thinks he’s wayyyy too smart for his age – planning a prank for him, and a whole lotta crass jokes about anything in general! LOL
Ahhhh! After all this fun… gotta get back to work! PS: all that rice in that special thali has made me drowsy. Lets head to the recreation room… catch a bean bag & some 40 winks ;)
PS: this can also be used as a getaway for inspiration ;)
4 pm: Raju gets you chai and you realize its time to get cracking. Quick smoke & chai and you’re back at your desk, team gathering commences! Brainstorming in full swing, yet you cant help notice how your boss can ramble on for hours without noticing that nobody is really paying attention to him! Poor guy!
Oooohhhh.. smart ass intern wants to speak huh, lets snub him! Yeah rite… that idea needs to be shot down :P
Meeting over! Phew…thank god! You’ve got everything you need and you’re all set to work on your copy… when you realize the deadline is impossible (as usual). You start fighting with the Account Executive… after all no day in complete without that fight…just as no meal is complete without Hajmola (aah! the effects of branding ;)
And you finally get your way… even if you interpreted his NO as a YES ;)
Cos the creative guys always get their way ! :)
And as you start working on the copy, you realize its 6.30 already! Oooppsss ~ another nighter… time for some booze, chicken tikka and a whole lotta fun… and oh yes! Work :P
So the work continues all night… which consists of incessant trips to the coffee machine, & the loo, and the design team and to the recreation room, then back to the copy room! Ahhh! Time for the pitch already!! Better freshen up ~ dab on some perfume, oh yea! im done ;)
Now, since the creative guys stayed up all night working on the pitch, and the account executive could well have been renamed Suppandi (or Postman Uncle – cos thats what they reduce their job to).. who could explain the concept better than us? So we tag along for the meeting, looking as sleep-deprived as ever! However, the chances of winning an account also depended inversely on our sleep-deprived look.

So we give it our best shot… walk in confidently and tell the client that he better be going in for our creatives or he is gonna lose out on the best thing ever since cheese was discovered! But, we realize that clients love being difficult. It gives them a high to reject creatives at the first pitch – a chance to show the ‘creative guys’ that you’re not all that smart. The general thought really is “I’m the client and I pay you to tell me I AM SMART! So now go back and work on the silly little feedback I have given you and massage my ego.”
Ugh! Back to the drawing board. But we decide, lets give the client a few changes. After a few fonts changed & a few visuals (& slight copy) altered ~ the brave hearts return. Turns out it does help to include a few client suggestions as long as you can make them believe that the changes made all the difference to the creative and your initial idea remains the same :)
Phew! So basically, we don’t have days~we have days that extend into weeks, before we decide to take a break, disconnect for a day and get back to the next project! The next few days-turned-weeks pass by! The cycle continues ;)
Now, there are a few occasional days where you might finish your work before the deadline (the chances are one in a million) and you are dying to head home ASAP! You pack your bag and make a dash for the door; just then you hear your boss’s shrill voice screaming out that we have a new brief! Deadline: ASAP! Ugh~ Its back to the brainstorming sessions and you have to cajole your mind to get back to ‘work’
There goes that lovely dinner your mom has cooked, that date you probably took months to get in the first place, that repeat of Ugly Betty/ How I met your Mother/ endless reruns of F.R.I.E.N.D.S that you were hoping to watch!:)
In simple words, we have no life or WORK rules our life! Hence its no surprise that we would find our prospective partners at any of the following places:
Coffee Machine / Smoke Break / Across departments / via an email that you weren’t supposed to get / at an award function/ Ad Club Event / Office Party or picnic or drinking session with the boys!
And its good if we find them at our workplace… it will save us the trouble of explaining our overnight sessions @ work! After all, he / she could be a part of that too.. ;)
Ok! I know I promised to let you in on how our day unfolds… and when on to talk about a million other things! But thats just the way we are – we ramble on incessantly… even if we have an audience or not! :P
PS: I did manage to stick to the topic of advertising, no! ;)
Hope you had fun! :*

2 thoughts on “One Day @ an Ad Agency!

  1. More like A Day & A Night @ an Ad-agency. I know all about it – got a few good buddies who are in that hallowed profession.

    I like the MTV-like staccato style you have adopted.

    Write on!

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