Just when I thought I had finally grown accustomed to 97 Degrees West, I rediscovered an age-old struggle—local clients. While there’s always a learning curve when it comes to working within different industries, local clients pose their own unique set of challenges—from dialect and slang to local references and regional specialties. Is it frustrating? Absolutely. Is it hard to understand at times? Certainly. But that’s not to say it isn’t fun. Learning new things is one of the best perks of being a Copywriter. It’s also how we manage to stay fresh and relevant in our craft. At least, that’s how I look at it anyway. Besides, you never know when this new information may be of service down the road. It just might come in handy again one day.
Another thing I realized is that you should always consider how many people you can connect with before taking a position. In a larger office, you have a much better chance of finding a close-knit group of friends you can relate to on a personal level. At a smaller agency, you have less people to turn to and that could spell trouble for your work life. But, it also means that each of those relationships carry more weight. That’s why, on my first day at each new stop, I always try to pinpoint at least one person I can lean on—someone to help me learn the ropes, navigate the 'office waters' and of course, find the best bars and restaurants. I would say that of the 10 agencies I’ve visited thus far, only about 3 of them lacked a person like this. I consider myself rather lucky, but I know this is not always the case.
Office friendships can make all the difference, because when you have someone to talk to—who can actually relate to what your talking about—it’s a wonderful thing. So, if you’re ever interviewing for a new position, always ask for a look around and try to meet some of the team you’d be working with. It’ll give you a sense of how well you fit into the environment and how much you’d enjoy working there. After all, the best work comes from happy creatives.
Lastly, I want to thank Kristen Humphrey from The Creative Group for grabbing lunch with me the other day. We had a great chat about Austin's future and she was even kind enough to connect me with some of her colleagues in Seattle, San Francisco and LA. It's just one more reason to get excited for the west coast! I can't wait.