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Category Archives for Culture

5 Ways To Make An Agency Creative Feel Like An Award Winner.

“Inside the mind of a writer is a truly terrifying experience.” – Robert DeNiro at the Oscars, March 2014 Ouch, Bobby. As creatives, are we that insecure and in need of constant praise? Really? Well, maybe we’ve got the confidence and passion but like anyone, we do need to be recognized. That’s where many agencies […]

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Every Growing Agency Needs A Coach Thibs

Sometimes we place so much emphasis on the first year of a business as its most challenging, we don’t always consider that the real challenges to come happen in Year 3, 4 or 5 – when tough transitions need to happen. When they do, your people on the ground can’t necessarily see the grand vision […]

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Of Blackhawks, Parades and The 5 Levels of Employee Retention

  You don’t get to celebrate a sports title coming to your city every day, every week, every year and in some cases, every few decades. That’s why as I took a few hours out of my day to savor the importance of celebrating this moment with the NHL champion Chicago Blackhawks’ Stanley Cup parade, […]

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Conversations with Your 22-Year-Old Self

I was taking a look at my very first Advertising portfolio the other day. Have you done that recently? It’s a fun and a bit humbling trip down Memory Lane. You should try it. There they were, a collection of ads that were decently written but from an art direction standpoint…a total mess, really. I […]

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Panera Cares baking up an evolved business model

“Being an entrepreneur is about seeing opportunity. It’s easy to write a check. But the real challenge for corporations like us is…what if we could solve some of these core problems too?” – Ron Shaich, Founder, Chairman and Co-CEO, Panera Bread Co. Sometimes when entrepreneurs talk about giving back to the community, it can feel […]

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Let’s Truck In Some Sanity, Shall We, Restauranteurs?

The strangest thing about the food truck debate in Chicago is why it’s taken so long to resolve, considering every other town is doing it. The second strangest thing is why brick-and-mortar restaurants are this upset about the prospect of a food truck parking nearby. Why? If they looked a little deeper into who their […]

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Why HR Deserves A Voice In The Branding Discussion.

I just finished Michael Lewis’ fascinating book, “Boomerang: Travels in the New Third World” about how international economies such as Greece, Ireland, Iceland and Germany dealt (or in some cases, never dealt) with the global financial crisis. What I learned was that my assumptions about fixing the economies of the world were way too simplistic […]

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Is there such a thing as a Chicago ad person?

Lately when I’ve thought of what sort of people Advertising produces, for some reason my mind turns to clothing styles to spot this species in its native habitat. For example, you have the Creative Director, he of the thin glasses, goatee, jeans and blazer. Tends to refer to many things as “crap” and how we […]

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You’ll Never Have Enough Time. Thank Goodness.

This blog post would be better if only I had more time to write it. But the window I have to write it is now. And I like that. Because it mirrors the nature of a crazy, fun and manic business we chose to be a part of. The “Hurry Up and Wait” state of […]

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Maybe You Don’t Need a “Tricked-Out” Office.

I’m writing this post from a Starbucks, where I just had a meeting. Tomorrow, I’m having a one-on-one at a Panera. When not at either of those, I can be seen at Caribou Coffee or Einstein Bagels. Seriously, I should just replace my regular office address with those 4 logos. I know it’s a cool […]

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