Doing shit work is easy when nobody gives a fuck

Trivago campaign in the underground

I have a theory.

That it takes just as many people to make a great ad as it does to make a shit ad.

Obviously the quality of those people is imperative, but it’s also about passion, ambition and pride.

Once you combine all of the above, and you have a bit of luck, you have a fighting chance.

But.

The process requires everyone playing for the team.

Everyone having the same agenda.

It’s like a chain. Only as strong as its weakest link.

That’s why it’s so hard.

I have been lucky enough to work in some great agencies where the quality of the work was paramount.

CPB and Chiat/Day printed iconic posters to remind all staff that every piece of work is an opportunity to be creative.

I still have a Chiat/Day t-shirt on at home that says ‘Good Enough is Not Enough.’

As I said, doing great work is fucking hard.

In comparison, doing shit work is fucking easy.

It’s a fucking a walk in the park.

You start by not giving a fuck.

And when you don’t give a fuck, everything is easy.

The Trivago poster.

Oh that poster.

Pause.

Posters are a fantastic medium.

They are public.

A chance to stand out.

It’s about being bold.

Keeping it simple.

In my book they are the perfect goal scoring opportunity.

I believe a great poster can make your career.

Now back to that Trivago poster.

This is living proof of what happens when you don’t give a fuck.

In fact, this is what happens when lots of people don’t give a fuck.

The planner didn’t give a fuck.

The planning director didn’t give a fuck.

The account manager didn’t give a fuck.

The two account directors didn’t give a fuck.

The young creative team didn’t give a fuck.

The creative group head didn’t give a fuck.

The creative director didn’ t give a fuck.

The PA didn’t give a fuck.

The ECD didn’t give a fuck.

His PA didn’t give a fuck.

The MD, CEO and fucking chairman didn’t give a fuck.

The owner of the agency on his yacht didn’t give a fuck.

The designer didn’t give a fuck.

The head of design didn’t give a fuck.

The artworker didn’t give a fuck.

The CFO didn’t give a fuck.

The poor unfortunate who put teas, coffees and biscuits in the meeting rooms for all the meetings to discuss this work, didn’t give a flying fuck either.

The project manager didn’t give a fuck.

The head of opps didn’t give a fuck.

The data people didn’t give a fuck.

The consumer insights people didn’t give a fuck.

The qual and quant researchers didn’t give a fuck.

The photographer didn’t give a fuck.

The casting agent didn’t give a fuck.

The marketing manager didn’t give a fuck.

The marketing director didn’t give a fuck.

The photographer didn’t give a fuck.

The casting agent didn’t give a fuck.

The make-up and wardrobe didn’t give a fuck.

The casting agent didn’t give a fuck.

Even the dead-eyed model didn’t give a fuck.

Phew.

So many people, with so few fucks to give.

The only people who look like they gave a fuck in this sorry affair are the media people.

It’s a sweeping statement, but in my experience most media people only seem to give a fuck about making money, and because I see these bloody posters everywhere, I assume the media company made a shit-ton of money.

If only just one of the above had stood up and said, ‘No! This is fucking shite! We cannot let this fucking shite out the door!”

Perhaps things would have turned out differently.

Everyone, both client-side and agency-side would have something that they were proud of.

Perhaps, if that shitkicker stood up and shouted ‘No! This is fucking shite! We cannot let this fucking shite out the door!”

The TV work would have been a bit more interesting too.

A career in advertising, for clients as well as agency people, is all about recognising the opportunity and then taking it.

Instilling, passion, belief, vision and ambition into everyone.

Making the most of the chances you get.

Any poster is an opportunity.

We should use this poster as an example.

A living example of “Good Enough is Not Enough.”

Let’s move on and never let it happen again.

Dave Buonaguidi is the co-founder of St Luke's and Karmarama.

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DB

Dave Buonaguidi

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