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May 12, 2008

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Cyma Saeed

Fantastic, value adding comment. I belive every account exec should have had thorough orientation of different departments of the agency and at least a month's orientation with the client, with a desk in their office. That is the only way they can be in the position to ad value and not just volume.

Mike Covert

Having worked account and creative sides in agency life for many years, I too have felt restricted and subject to the speed bump to what agencies are supposed to do best. Couple of thoughts:

In my experience, it doesn't have to take months or a lot of personal to get a solid foundation for creative solutions. The purpose of a brief is to assemble valuable research and insight that helps define the problem in a comprehensive way. It sets up reference points for the creative solutions to stay on track. Without it, I find the goals of a program can get lost in the focus for great creative. If the right hands (i.e. not every account person on the floor) would spend more time contributing to the creative and less time revising nuances of the brief, I think everyone would be happier. Except those agencies selling time and justifying retainer personnel.

I also find, depending on the client, an extensive briefing process can be a security blanket. The perceived rigor helps sell the idea - in some cases, they are convinced the right idea is there before you ever get to present the concept. If the briefing process is done right, it is valuable to that end. It's a road map for strategic integrity. It just doesn't have to be the all-too-often time suck, for which clients also contribute their fair share.

Thanks for the post.

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