The Millennial: Start-up or step up?

by Faheem Chaudhry (@FaheemChaudhry) From graduates to those who have been in the industry for several years, many youngsters in advertising often find themselves at a crossroads: should they work at a small/specialist agency or one of the bigger players in the game?

Millennial Ad-Grad: Why we’re ambitious and impatient

by Faheem Chaudhry (@FaheemChaudhry) As millennials (generation Y) currently work themselves up through our organisations, they bring new dynamics and challenges for our leaders and managers to deal with. So what are these differences and challenges, and how can managers today deal with the mentality that millennials bring to the workplace?

Millenial Ad-Grad: We need to write the new rules

by Faheem Chaudhry (@FaheemChaudhry) It’s time we write the new rules. It’s time to rethink how we orientate ourselves in the ad industry. We’re in the midst of our own revolution — the consumer revolution. So let’s take a moment to zoom out a little, and focus on what is really going to drive remarkable change for organisations and businesses in the years to come.

Millennial Ad-Grad: The millennial workplace

by Faheem Chaudhry (@FaheemChaudhry) For creative businesses of all shapes and forms, consistently conceptualizing and executing the most original and unique work is a day-to-day goal as client organisations remain under constant pressure to differentiate and reinvent themselves, simply to stay relevant.

The role of technological progression is without a doubt at the heart of this, as opportunities for creating business value are taking different sizes and forms. While the world may be changing, the primary reason for success will always be rooted in the same dynamic. People. Recruiting and retaining the top talent will always be the core competitive advantage of any creative industry leader.

The Millennial Workplace

We’re all becoming increasingly familiar with the differences between millennials and previous generations. We (millennials) were born in the digital age, have grown up in an era of immediate gratification and are geared towards working under constantly changing expectations, pressures and time constraints.

In creative industries specifically, the world’s leading organisations are adopting new and innovative ways of bringing the best millennials to their boardrooms.

More and more business leaders are realising that the work space and atmosphere determines the ways employees work and the way their imaginations explore. The more inspirational the workplace, the easier creative blocks are overcome and new ideas and territories are explored.

So what are the core characteristics of the creative workplace? And what are millennials most attracted to about them?

Millennial Ad-Grad: Marketing lessons from Brand Obama

by Faheem Chaudhry (@FaheemChaudhry) Arguably one of the most memorable arrivals to South African shores in recent years was that a few weeks back of US President Barack Obama – the man who during his first presedential election captured the imagination of the world through his message of hope and change for all. While President Obama always has and always will have his fair share of critics, I found myself captivated by his trip, his message for our country, simply, by brand Obama.

As disciplines, politics and marketing are social science cousins. In fact, politics is marketing. It’s about projecting and selling an image, talking to human aspiration and bringing people together through common interests and shared values.

But what underpins brand Obama? And what we as marketers can learn from his brand?

Millennial Ad-Grad: Why we choose the ideas business

by Faheem Chaudhry (@FaheemChaudhry) I’m sure some of you are familiar with a brilliant documentary called ‘Art & Copy’. It opens with an insightful musing by ad-legend Hal Riney:

“The frightening and most difficult thing about being what somebody calls a creative person is that you have absolutely no idea where any of your thoughts come from really, and especially, you don’t have any idea where they are going to come from tomorrow”.

It had me thinking. What Riney spoke about may well be the greatest challenge for ad-folk, and especially for young people entering the industry. There’s an air of uncertainty that comes with solving a new business problem with the right creative thinking. But I like to believe it’s also our primary driving force. Its unpredictable nature excites us,inspires us and is the reason that when the right ideas are born, they effect change in business to levels that other business services simply cannot reach.

Millennial Ad-Grad: How to impress in post-recessionary adland

by Faheem Chaudhry (@FaheemChaudhry) ‘Never waste a good recession’ were Warren Buffet’s witty words of advice during the financial downfall of recent years. While this sort of philosophy has become synonymous with his unrivalled investment and business success, many business leaders will argue it’s easier said than done as they still fight the battle to full financial recovery.

As the next generation entering the advertising game, we are entering the industry at a time when marketing budgets are under the spotlight and need to prove their full worth in the boardroom.

This has certain knock on effects on an industry where ad-employment isn’t exactly available in abundance to young people. And for those beginning their first gig, it’s pretty tough out there.

But fear not, my friends. Being in an industry at such a time simply means a greater responsibility on the shoulders of those who will carry it forward. It’s an opportunity to take ownership of the current dynamic, and help steer it to calmer waters. But what are clients and advertising bosses looking for from their next generation? And what will we need to be well versed in to reach advertising stardom?

Here are my thoughts as a member of the next crop.

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