Know Your Role…the Account Role AND the Creative Role

The Account Man and Creative Man

First I wanted to title the post “Account Guy and Creative Guy”, but deeming it so would rightly offend the women out there doing their thing.

So I oblige.

We are in our second year, and if I say so myself, we are doing quite well for the environment we started in, and for the state of the marketing industry in Charlotte. Why have we done so well? Regardless of talent, networking and external forces, I think it narrows down to one thing: Chemistry.

Chemistry (n): “interaction between people working together; specifically : such interaction when harmonious or effective” <a team lacking chemistry>

In the agency world, there are people who can create something out of nothing (creatives), and there are those who make sure that the creating continues to happen (accounts). Although there are people who can do both, it was way more efficient to let the better person take charge of the specific role. And when that relationship is defined, it is then even more important to ensure that relationship is not changed unless explicitly agreed.

Account Folks: Leave the creativity to your creatives
Of course since this group brings in the business, they naturally have the inkling to suggest and even try to control the creative parts of the account.

Fight the urge! It’s not your job.

The account folks, however, are very important when it comes to the account. You are the ones that search and find the organizations that fit your creative strain. For example, our work would not fly in a conservative atmosphere, so I would never attempt reaching out to those people. But a client that is young, liberal and ready to change the status quo…now we’re talking!

Our job is to set our creative folks for the optimal chance of success. We need to know how our creative group works so we give them accounts they’ll put their hearts and minds toward.

Creatives: Let the Account Peeps Build the Business-
You all demand creative freedom, and that your work be judged not by how long it took, or what the client suggested, but how you feel the work encompasses what the message was created to bring out. Fair enough, deal.

But concentrate on that, and the account folks will keep your plate full.

There will be times that there will be a difficult account. If the account folks brought them in, there must be some symmetry of philosophy, or else the client wouldn’t be there. Like in all business, emotions can get caught up in work, and that’s okay. It’s awesome to take pride in your work. But focus on the work and don’t tell the client to leave because they didn’t like something you did. Let the account people mend the wound, direct (or re-direct) the thinking, and you’re back doing what love- doing golden creative.

Yet, Don’t Be Afraid to Mix
There will be times that combining both groups proves to be dynamite. Some clients/accounts need the power of both accounts and creative. Also, the individual skills both possess should never be overlooked. Though roles are defined, talent, in the marketing world, rules the conversation.

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