Tag Archives | david ogilvy

Why A Good Waxing Saves Careers

There’s a real message in hot wax to help smooth successful and happy careers. It all starts with self-examination. Take a look, and thrive. Here’s how.
In Greek mythology, Daedalus advised his son Icarus to be bold enough to fly but not to fly so high that the sun’s heat would melt the wax of the wings he had fashioned for him.
Thrilled by his initial aerobatic successes, Icarus ignored his father’s advice and paid the ultimate price – a sobering demonstration of unjustified self confidence and the abuse of power.
He blew his moment in the sun, and fell victim to this wonderful adage:
“…. Today a peacock, tomorrow a feather duster.”

Why I Told My Work Colleague I Loved Him- And I Meant It

I was taken by surprise this week. Shaking the hand of a colleague at a meeting’s end, I looked him in the eyes and said: “Arthur- I love you.” I meant it. And, he did not immediately phone the HR department ‘hotline’ for urgent counsel. Here’s why. And why it made me feel so energised.

I am struggling to do up my business shirts these days. No excuses. Just binge eating under pressure. But I’ve turned the corner (fingers crossed), and have started exercising again. While ambling around a park last week, I was listening to, aptly, Meat Loaf. One of his most famous lyrics jolted me…. when Mr Loaf suggests ‘… two out of three ain’t bad.’ And the jolt was the realisation that, quite simply, it’s not true.

Here’s why. I had an intriguing meeting the next morning- with a ‘dynamo’ younger colleague I mentor (he mentors me too), who was seriously thinking about taking a client-side senior role. I was not sure how to handle the meeting- what to say- and it was Mr Loaf who gave me the answer. He reminded me of this deep truth:

Look In The Mirror- Can You See This Fatal Flaw?

We were celebrating our client’s triumph in the most hostile takeover in Australian corporate history when its Chief Executive sobered the mood with a warning that has stayed with me ever since. It is a massive ‘watch out’ for businesses and ourselves. Do you suffer from this fatal flaw?

When client Campbell Soup Company launched a takeover bid for Australian biscuit maker Arnotts in 1991, the newspaper headline screamed : ”US Cookie Monster Wants To Gobble Our Arnotts.” So began a hugely emotive and aggressively fought takeover war, which ended with Campbell’s gaining control at the last gasp against all expectations.

The celebration cocktail party was in full swing a few weeks later, all the advisors and client executives in fine form, when Campbell CEO David Johnson (coincidentally- an Australian), gave us this chilling warning during his speech. “Enjoy the moment, “he said, “but be very careful. Because, remember this…..”

10 vital habits of client service ninjas

To grow successful careers in services firms or deliver to your internal ‘clients’ in a world class fashion, we have to recapture and relentlessly implement an attitude sadly missing from many in business today. Without it, we will fail. Here it is, and the 10 Vital Habits of the very best professionals I know.

Winning clients is far easier than keeping them. Chuck Porter, the founder of iconic agency Crispin Porter Bogusky, told the 2010 Cannes Creativity Festival his secrets to building a great agency. “Hire Client Ninjas” was a key point: talented executives who live and breathe delivering outstanding service and value to the client. Keeping clients is the key to building a big business.

Here’s how to do it.

The holy grail of consulting – do this and triumph

“We have to become a partner with our clients.” Dream on, says I. In 27 years working on clients, not one has ever viewed me as a partner: always as a supplier. Here’s why, and here’s how to become an indispensable supplier.

Becoming ‘partners with clients’ gets talked about a lot in agency world, but it has never happened to me. We’ve had deep, enduring client relationships, but none crossed the line to true partnership. Why do I say that? I always knew that if we stuffed up two times in a row (maybe three at a pinch), we’d be out. That’s not partnership- it’s a supplier relationship.

Our mission has to be to become our client’s most valuable, most indispensable supplier. To achieve this, we have to become TRUSTED ADVISORS. Here’s how.

Why putting yourself out of business is smart

The most dangerous threat to the success of our businesses and careers is a great last result. It breeds complacency. FATAL! We have to relentlessly work to improve: or we will be overtaken and will soon fade into history. Here’s why, and how to do it.

Never rest on your laurels. John Chambers, a great Cisco CEO, famously said: “Stay paranoid.” David Ogilvy talked about “Divine discontent.”

Remember this- we are only as good as our next result.

To grow successful, thriving and sustainable careers and businesses, we have to remain ‘divinely discontent’ and ‘paranoid’ about our capabilities, our edge, and our competitors. Here’s two great ways to do it.