Great teams know and practice the fundamentals. This is true in sports, as it is in business.

In the ad business, the fundamentals are absent in way too many instances today, and to be successful as a marketer, they must never be absent. Clients spend millions of dollars with agencies to grow their audiences and ultimately generate more sales. To help them achieve their ends, we must know and practice the fundamentals, speak the same industry language, and agree upon what success looks like.

Learn from the Best, Learn from the Legends

My desire to fill the knowledge gap for advertising students and working professionals led me to research the careers of legendary advertising professionals. Ultimately, I chose 13 individuals to focus on. Identifying their signature achievements, then stepping back to see the relationships between their thinking and doing, has helped me immensely in my own ad industry journey. I’m hoping that the information I’ve gathered also helps you in yours.

To gain credibility as an industry and make better work—work that performs for our clients—we need to adopt stronger creative standards. To recognize and then consistently rely on these timeless standards, we need to know our industry’s history, where we’ve been, and how we got here.

If you or your team isn’t sure what “1984” means, or why it matters in an advertising context, I will help you fix that by focusing on some of the legendary people who created timeless campaigns, fundamental concepts, and structures that ad pros continue to rely on today. From Ogilvy’s “Hathaway Man” to Burnett’s “Jolly Green Giant,” to Mary Wells’ “End of the Plain Plane,” the workshop covers a lot of important ground.

To provide greater insight into the content available, here I am rehearsing a segment of the workshop:

The workshop is presented live at your agency or place of business and can be structured as a half-day or full-day session. Either way, we will look closely at the work done by the industry’s legends, and then discuss the work and why it matters today.

Fundamentals of Business Writing Workshop

In 2017, XPLANE in Portland asked me to spend an hour presenting the fundamentals of business writing to their entire team. It was a fun interactive presentation and a helpful overview of the fundamentals of clear, concise communications.

Whether you write an email or a white paper, there’s the right way to do it and a sloppy ineffective way. In this workshop, I outline the basics of clear business writing and I help participants connect the dots between their own writing and the actions they hope to make happen.