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Success seldom surfaces


when creative service


providers are squashed


. . . or does it? 



Show me a writer or designer who thrives on being torturously pushed and prodded to stressful deadlines, and I’ll show you someone who is likely to be a do-nothing PR agent or brain-dead news media person, but don’t expect to find great advertisers, marketers or creative service people thrive in angst-ridden  pandemonium.

With rare exception, creative development work that’s “rushed” breeds mediocrity (and costs more, which makes the engager a double loser!). Truly remarkable talent, it is said by many, is born of free spirit, and ample time.

Do I know exceptions? Plenty. But exceptional creativity is the product of unconstrained imagination and self-discipline. The exceptions I know –ah, including myself (!)– coulda/shoulda/woulda produced more outstanding creations if they’d (we’d) not been pushed, prodded, intimidated, threatened, and time-pressured.

My best writing has surfaced during both

great duress and great relaxation. So

maybe the rule is an exception?


My national boo0k award effort was done at my leisure. Its underperforming predecessor took two years under pressing deadlines. My worst book was written under crushing due dates. My best book –now almost ready to market– was ten years on the drawing board. My best award-winning jingle was done in one all-nighter.

My worst ad campaign took six months to research and justify and another six months to finalize and launch. My national award-winning, record-sales marketing program took three months start to finish. I have a future award-winning children’s book series ready to launch after 40 years in hiding.

And only heaven knows how many hundreds of new business startups have benefited by my rushing attacks on their website content, news releases, packaging, media positioning, and strategic planning. Yet the most successful, sales-productive efforts I have made have come only with major investments of time.

The trouble is that upstart business owners want what they want when they want it and time is not a worthy commodity to offer when they’re sitting on a hot idea and investor dollars.

Neither patience nor perfectionism has ever been a trait of entrepreneurs.

Neither has analysis, which is typically the province of corporate muckity-mucks


Okay, so knocking this subject all over doesn’t settle the issue of business time pressures and the creative product. That, however, is the issue. Pushing and prodding and time-pressuring creative people may not always produce the best or most productive work, but it gets the job done.

Depending on circumstances and the marketplace and the economy (and who can depend on the economy?), a judgement must be made about whether you want to win awards or customers. Without a lot of room for awards on the walls of a crushing economy, the bottom line should be to insist on results, not pretty words and pictures.

Design awards only produce sales for designers. Copywriting awards only produce sales for copywriters. You can stop paying for your creative service providers to get more sales by putting some heat on their abilities to perform for you, the client.

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Hal@Businessworks.US     302.933.0116

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

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