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IHAVEANIDEA.ORG > ask jancy >  What’s the route to becoming a CD?

What’s the route to becoming a CD?

What is the normal route to become a Creative Director? I know that there isn’t one set path, but do you find that more CDs begin their career as an Art Director or a Copywriter? And what do you think would be more beneficial?

intro Whats the route to becoming a CD?Once upon a time, there was a sort of normal route to the creative director’s position. He was usually a copywriter (never a woman, of course, and art directors were clearly of a lower status—the “wrists”.). Today’s normal, and there really isn’t one, would be to see a writer or art director boy or girl (more likely boy) that has the skill set to have moved up the ladder to associate creative director/group creative director (so many silly titles) get their shot at the big title when timing and circumstances are “right”. That person needs to be not only talented as a creative, but also a good manager of people, a natural leader who is good with clients and coworkers. They’re ready to make a big change—the CD job is far removed from the comparitively simple exercize of creating ads. This is a new, big challenge. They’ve most likely piled up many awards on their journey, so have a profile in the community and a strong reputation. It doesn’t much matter if their background is in art direction or writing, although more writers seem to get the spot, still. Today many agencies employ co-creative directors; the job is typically one of crushing weight, and two heads are often better than one. Or at least, two people tend to stay sane longer.

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About Jancy

'Jancy' is Janet Kestin and Nancy Vonk, Co-Founders of Swim, a unique “creative leadership training lab for advertising creatives and marketers.” Prior to Swim, Jancy was globally renowned as the Co-Chief Creative Officers of Ogilvy & Mather Toronto, a position they held for thirteen of the twenty years they were a creative duo at the agency. Over the years they've racked up Cannes Lions, Clios, One Show pencils and CA credits, and have lead their shop to two Cannes Lions Grand Prix and a Grand Clio. They've judged CA, Cannes, D&AD, the One Show, the Clios and other prestigious award shows. Creativity named them two of the top 50 creative people of 2008. Known for their outspoken, no-bullshit style and a passion for mentoring juniors, they're ready to give you advice if you're ready to take it.

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