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Q&A times

Jereek asks:

"What was your overall experience like getting your first job?"

Hi Jereek. Nice to comment with you.

Work is slow today, so I'll give you the long answer. 

Little bit of background on me:

I'm from suburban Canada. I played competitive tennis my whole life but somewhere deep down inside me I always wanted to make ads for toilet paper. Just kidding, I wanted to write the next great Canadian novel and then sell out in L.A. by age 25, but I did occasionally see an ad on TV that would make me say "I wonder who thought of that."

And so I ventured out into the world (a small, private university in the middle of nowhere) on a tennis scholarship and majored in journalism and marketing. It was fun for a while until I realized I really, truly hated journalism and marketing. So I panicked, spinning out into a void of self-doubt and sadness. Where had the young, carefree creative writer I once knew disappeared to? Had I lost all childhood innocence? And why hadn't the care package my mom sent two weeks ago arrived yet? It was trying times.

But then finally, one day it happened. I got up the courage to walk up and tell my journalism professor I wanted to take a creative writing course and he said, "cool, the creative writing prof is over there. Go say hi." So I did and he gave me a class syllabus and then he mentioned he ran an advertising club and I could do creative writing there, too. Then I graduated and I realized copywriting was my long lost soul mate and that I really truly wanted to write toilet paper ads, like, for real, so he said you should go to portfolio school. So I applied to Miami Ad School and VCU and I chose Miami Ad School. Just kidding, I didn't get into VCU. Might have had something to do with my GMAT scores that I may or may not have studied for but anyways let's move on. 

Miami Ad School has a crazy internship program where you can intern all over the world. So I applied and was accepted to intern at Ogilvy Tokyo then JWT Australia and then voila, Droga5 NYC. I'm glazing over a few details here but I have a meeting at 5pm. I should mention, though, I met my AD partner at Miami Ad School and we traveled together and we had matching portfolios and it was beautiful. It also helped us get an internship at Droga because he was a great AD and coded / animated our portfolio like magic so word to the wise, if you find a partner you like, stick together. 

We worked our little butts off when we got to Droga, because it's awesome here and we were like, uh, no we aren't leaving. Ever. But I'm Canadian and he's Indian and we both needed visas so we worked twice as hard to ask for work and get noticed. And somehow, it worked. It wasn't easy and there were tears and sweat and exhaustion and way, way too many burritos but in the end, we made it. 

Details of getting a Visa as an international student will be addressed in another post. So will interning, because even though it sucks and you're broke for a while it's still a great way to get that foot in that door. Also, free dinner. 

k bye for now. 

10 ways ad agencies differ from typical office jobs

I had a regular office job once. I was some sort of number-crunching marketing person (can’t really remember anymore, must’ve blocked it from my memory), and let me tell you the ad office life is quite different from the reg office life. Apart from the passive aggressive fridge letters and accidental reply-all emails.

Here are the ad life perks:


  1. Endless Free Food!


They do it so you stay at the office longer, but whatever. It’s free and it’s (sometimes) delicious.


2. If you aren’t busy, then leave

There’s none of that painful watching of the clock and dashing out at 5:59pm. If you have nothing to do, most of the time you can just go. You’ll have plenty of all-nighters to make up for it.


3. Procrastination is completely accepted

[Morning email about a task that will take 20 minutes to do.] “Hey, can you get this done by today?”

“hmmm. I’ll try.”

*7 hours of Youtube and 20 minutes of work later*

“Here you go! Sorry it’s so last minute, I was super swamped today.”

It’s all fun and games until you’re waiting on someone else’s procrastination, though.


4. Most of the work is as fun as a dog rolling in a ball pit

The procrastination might be real, but when you do get around to doing some work you realize how fun it is. Which is a lot nicer than opening Excel and wanting to die.

ball pit.gif


5. The Parties, though

So much drinking, so much networking, so many shiny trophies, so much fun.


6. Youtube videos and Buzzfeed are “research”

Yup. I have taken inspiration from at least 2 Buzzfeed articles in my time, as sad as that may be. 


7. Lots of weird shit. Always.

You know it’s an ad agency when you walk in and see a giant Babybel Wax sculpture in the hall. It’s as horrifying as it is impressive.


8. Email Lyfe: Gifs on gifs on gifs

Creative department emails are like Saturday morning cartoons: bright, loud and oddly satisfying when you’re hungover.

email lyfe.gif


9. Desk toys aren’t reserved for the creepy IT guy

Kinetic sand, dolls and little plastic cars from whatever kid’s brand you’re working on, inflatable donuts and a lot of other weird shit lives on a creative’s desk. And nobody will judge you for it.


10. Social Media sites will NEVER be blocked. Like wtf is that anyways.

Srsly. It’s a free-for-all Facebook frenzy. Go nuts. 


All gifs come from Young Shits does not reserve the rights to any of these gifs.