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During my twenty years of creative firm experience in the New York City area, I've found that agencies and creative firms benefit strongly from clarity of process and a defined workflow (not too complicated and not too simple that we become lost). It's this clarity that makes projects successful and less stressful when we are all working the long days in creative land.
Process in an agency should be considered a baseline for what should happen. Culture is the environment. Creativity happens when people are able to use this baseline in an environment that allows for building new ways of looking at problems. These connections can happen any where inside and outside of your organization, they are new connections amid the chaos that allow for innovation, creativity, craft & design for the idea at hand.
DISRUPTION OF THE CREATIVE AGENCY
For years people have written about the demise of the advertising agency. They’ve predicted that digital, crowdsourcing and co-creation would radicalize the way agencies work; that advertising agencies would become irrelevant as conventional newspapers.
If the last few years have taught us anything, it’s that while the media, channel or “platform” advertising encompasses has shifted, the need for big creative and strategic thinking — hasn't.
Advertising agencies haven’t disappeared,
they've evolved into a wide range of creative firms.
Sure, the times have changed and so has the technology,
but cycles in advertising are nothing new.
Agencies begin small and nimble, some get big, and a few even bigger.
Then they get too big, and they buy a bunch of smaller places to try and remain relevent.
And then a few frustrated creative people (who think they can do better) quit and start their own thing.
Then, hopefully, they beat the odds, they get big, and maybe too big and the cycle happens all over again.
We iterate. We evolve. But we will always rely on big ideas to disrupt.
What's your big idea?
Ed currently runs Makr Consulting — an organizational development consultancy that specializes in creative organizations and internal brands. Makr focuses on the people, process, and cultural development that drive creativity and innovation in organizations.
Recently, Ed was the managing director at Plus, an independent ad agency in New York. Before Plus, Ed was a full-time executive level consultant for various agencies in the NYC area. Prior to that he headed the Production department for Taxi NYC. During that time he built the entire department from the ground up at the agency's inception into New York, where he has produced a wide range of integrated projects from traditional to the unconventional. Ed's contributions led to award-winning work which helped contribute to Taxi being named Small Agency of the Year by the AAAA's, two years in a row for 2007 and 2008.
During his career, Ed has been on the management teams of several agencies, running operations and numerous integrated production, studio, project management and IT departments for agencies in the New York City area. His background includes; Vice President, Director of Production for Cossette Post in New York, Creative Services Director for Lois EJL/USA (George Lois' last agency), six years as VP, Studio Services for Ambassador Marketing and stints at Wieden + Kennedy, R/GA and Stein Rogan & Partners in New York. Ed occasionally teaches classes in Quark, Illustrator and Photoshop at various art schools and colleges throughout NYC and NJ. Ed has also taught classes at the Morris County Community College. Prior to starting his career in advertising, he studied at the Rochester Institute of Technology, with concentrations in traditional animation and organizational management. Ed continues his studies at RIT and is enrolled in a part-time graduate program focusing on organizational development in the creative environment.
Ed was also on the panel for the 2008 NPES Print Outlook Summit and for the APA of New York, "Let's Talk Legal" discussion.
There are times when agencies can benefit by stepping back and looking inward. We work so hard on outward-facing projects, we often forget to work on our inner selves. I offer agency-wide cultural, core competencies, work-flow and best-practice assessments. I focus my time on how to increase efficiencies, improve agency culture and how to make the agency more profitable. I'm here to help you develop the teams and culture that will move your agency forward. To learn more, visit Makr Consulting or email me directly.