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What you need to get ahead in advertising

2009-07-01 17:25
Attention to detail. I once missed a spelling mistake when proof-checking a brochure. It went to print – all 5000 copies. I threw up.

Curiosity about everything and anything. Why do they use those kind of apples to make that cider?

People skills. You need to have ideas and deal with all kinds of characters. But if you're better at being charming and getting stuff done, as opposed to actually creating it, rather go into PR.

A childlike approach to the world. I still bounce on jumping castles and play in mud (usually at rock festivals).

A sense of humour. Take the job seriously, not yourself.

. A great idea means nothing if you can't sell it your client.

A thick skin. You must put your heart into it to get the best work, but that also means your heart gets crushed when work is bombed. I have cried in the bathroom many times, it's my little haven of tiled calm. Find yours.

Despite all this, I love advertising. I get paid to think "What if?" and to wonder what makes people tick. I get to work with incredibly talented individuals and on multi-million rand campaigns.

I get to create stuff. Yes, it's to sell something, and sure you have to schmooze to get the idea produced, but at the end of the day you have a tangible piece of work, sprouted from the fertile field of your strange little brain. And it's work that people remember and admire, if you've done it right.

Oh, it's also a helluva lot of fun.

Apart from writing copy and pretending to be important, Amanda also tweets @amandasevasti and blogs

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