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IHAVEANIDEA.ORG > ask jancy >  I’m a junior catching flak for “junior” mistakes

I’m a junior catching flak for “junior” mistakes


After a year of freelancing I’ve finally started my first real full time job as a junior copywriter.
My bosses are happy with my headlines and concepts, but they get frustrated with my inexperience in executing the ideas. For example, while making a direct mail piece I was scolded for burying the call to action in some body copy. I was told that was a very junior mistake and I needed to work on it.
Any ideas on how I can learn to be less junior without pissing off my bosses? I’ve read lots of books on concepting (including yours), but I can’t find anything on the nuts and bolts of how to successfully put and ad, or campaign, together. Any thoughts? Any books in the works?

intro Im a junior catching flak for junior mistakesPresumably, your bosses knew your experience level when they hired you, so why are they all over you now? Did they think you were more senior than you are? Junior mistakes are part of being a junior. Making them is of how you learn. Your bosses are responsible for your practical education. That includes learning how to execute stuff. We hope, for your sake, that you have good, generous senior people in your department who can explain and demonstrate how you should go about things. Run your ideas and copy by them before you show it to your creative director. Think of your senior people as your safety net. If there are no official associate creative directors or group heads that you can show your work to, adopt someone. Most senior people like to share their experience and won’t want to see you fall on your face.

Only experience will make you less junior. But keep your eyes and ears open and use all the learning opportunities that come your way. We’ve known people who were still junior at 5 years and people who were virtually seniors in the same time.

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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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