Winter 2020 | Volume 01


Why advertisings’ worst nightmare is the best thing that ever happened

Written by Jeannette Bohné,
Creative Director, BBDO Berlin, Creative Academy '18

Advertising: isn’t it just the best industry in the world? A magical space where you get paid to have ideas; where grown-ups are celebrated for letting their inner child come out and play. It’s a place where careers can happen overnight – or more precisely over a Gold Lion.

I love advertising. When I became Creative Director at an international ad agency in Germany, I secretly cried some tears of joy. For some years now, there’s been something slightly different. Suddenly, I was fighting with 10 other agencies over one junior copywriter. Suddenly, my team no longer screamed “hell yeah! I’m in!” when I asked them to stay longer to work on a sales promotion. Suddenly, old colleagues switched to companies like Deloitte or Netflix and, suddenly, even that one copywriter quit to work for a start-up.

I was scared. Terrified. Why are these companies stealing MY talent? Well, because they can. While some of us are still nostalgic about the glory days of high production budgets, the next generation of creative talent wants more. They are looking for self-realisation (surprise: it’s not designing a 50% off sticker) and they are much more aware of needing a healthy working environment. One that allows you to spend time with friends and family – and even more importantly, one that allows you to have a career no matter your gender, sexuality or age.

Of course, other companies investing in creative talent is actually the best thing that ever happened to all creatives. Never have there been more possibilities for writers, designers, strategic thinkers and all other creative unicorns to put their brains to work. And that is a reason to smile.

So, what’s next for advertising? Can we still win incredible talent? I, for one, will do everything in my power to make my team a safe space where all creatives feel welcome and where they have the freedom to have a life outside the office. When I sit in an interview I won’t ramble about the beer fridge – I will talk equal pay, shattering the glass ceiling and personal growth.

And if this doesn’t work? Well, then Disney can expect my application.