Saturday, 5 January 2013

bye bye h

what a climactic end to the year! in the same month that i acquire my master's in the art of advertising (Em M. MA) i have also come to the end of a three month placement at one of the world's most notorious agencies.

i really enjoyed my past few months at bbh. really enjoyed them, they flew by and i'm sad to have left.

i entered into bbh through their home grown scheme along with three other 'home growners' and was placed on the second floor in sprint (the office is divided up into six, sprint, mint and penthouse - it makes sense once you're in there...) my first tasks included researching how people are using nfc for barclaycard and delving into social media for virgin media. we were lucky enough to be given talks by both charlie rudd and jon peppiatt in our first week who gave us a sense of what bbh is about and the kinds of attributes they seek in the people that work there.

in my second month, as building work began and the agency transformed into a submarine, i was kindly taken under the wing of the research department on the premise that as a junior strategist the way that i could be most useful would be if i can find things quickly. richard helyar and his team opened up google a new for me as well as giving me a clear breakdown of their tools, including tgi, sysomos and warc. during this second month we also got a talk about insights from jim carroll (as mentioned in a previous post, a man who evokes huge respect), he explained the importance not only of condensing thought but also expanding it, setting tasks which may be worth a post in themselves.

throughout our time there we had the homegrown team, including abi and rishi, to go to with any concerns or queries and many other people were also generous with their time to have a coffee and impart their advice. i never took for granted the power of the minds in that building, as well as how nice everyone was. the old paradox of being good and friendly really holds true there (at least in my experience).

in my final few weeks i worked on a weekly digital zeitgeist for audi and a mobile thought piece for nick fell, which i'll be posting shortly. i also shadowed the prodigy that is tim jones. i helped him and the virgin media team on a commercial strategy and got to go to my first focus group.

the great thing about doing my placement at this time of year was that i got to go to the company meeting in the guardian building and the office christmas party. the less great thing is that it's not the best time for hiring and although it had always been made clear that there wouldn't necessarily be a job available, it would have been the perfect end to the year. i shouldn't have drunk so much of the kool-aid but this hopefully won't be the absolute end to my time there. as i said to john hegarty on my last day "i hope this is more 'au revoir' and not 'adieu'", yes, i actually said that to him. goals for 2013 include working on my inner monologue and being less awkward around advertising legends.