Wednesday, January 16, 2008


Back in the mid-to-late 20th Century, I was involved in the early days of setting up a telecom company. My bit was getting the billing systems going, but I had the pleasure of being dragged into just about every other meeting going, because Biling is one of those issues that affects everything in a telecom company.

I remember sitting in one meeting and being told that most things to do with the Launch would be specified by "The Creatives" who were coming in during the next week from the advertising agency. I was pretty upset with the implication that I and everyone else in the room was as creative as a wet stick.

Well, they came in - sold us a load of garbage about a Russian Glasnost theme and recipes for Borscht and advised us to change the shade of purple we used in our literature.

Total garbage - the campaign flopped big-style and there was never any question of "The Creatives" being held to account. I was going to attach a link to the adverts to show you just how bad they were but there is no trace of them on any of the UK Adverts websites. That bad.

I'm enjoying the EMI saga, where a talented hard-nosed financial guy is shaking his head at the ruination caused by clueless mee-djah types and primadonna "talent", and trying to use business methods to sort out the trouble. I predict he'll fail - no "Creative" is ever going to respect him, no matter how many companies he's turned around. I heard an interview with him where he described his turnaround of Odeon Cinemas as "persuading them that they were in the popcorn business rather than the movie business". I'm sure that kind of attitude is not going to endear himself to the artistes.

Contrast with the football world wheer we have the Newcastle United saga, where a bunch of primadonna "talent" have been so Butt-lazy for so long that they have made the team practically unmanageable. Thankfully in this case the board have brought in Kevin Keegan, who the players must respect even based on his achievements as a player, never mind his achievements as a manager. The fact that he's a hero to the fans and loves Newcastle is no small advantage either. Good luck to him.

Not sure what my overall point is exactly. I hate the fact that people split the world into creative and non-creative, I hate the fact that "creatives" tend not to respect talent outside their area of expertise, and I hate the fact that getting "creatives" to work together is so difficult. Would the world be better off without them, and we just had "people with talent" rather than "creatives" ?

No comments: