I Can’t Stand Agency People.

By Pat Pujolas, Brokaw Creative Director

I recently had the opportunity to present a piece of strategy work to some colleagues at a renowned global agency. In doing so, I got to see firsthand what it’s like to sit on the other side of that table and feel what the client feels, if only for one meeting. Let me tell you, it stinks.

1. Agency people cross their arms a lot

You know what I mean. They wear black turtlenecks and slump down in their chairs. They cross their arms tightly. And they look as though they might be constipated. In fact, as we moved through the PowerPoint, I tracked a direct correlation between the ascending slide number and the depth of the agency’s furrowed brow. Wish I were kidding.

2. Agency people apologize too much

When it came time for feedback, the agency folks were decidedly engaged, but always prefaced their remarks with an apology or a defensive remark. Worst of all, they kept repeating, “We all have the same goals here.” But I have to wonder how the ensuing discussions on “keeping it simple” or “not over-thinking things” helped to advance our actual marketing objectives.

3. They’re a bunch of know-it-alls

I wrote this at the hotel after a few drinks. I was wondering how other professions would fare if we challenged them as we do an agency. So I told the bartender that his martini had too much vermouth. He shot back, “You don’t drink many martinis, do you?” So I folded my arms and said, “I’m sorry, but I’m just another guy with an opinion. Sometimes, less is more.”

Like I said. I can’t stand agency people.
Editor’s Note: Editor wishes to inform O-News readers that we at Brokaw aspire to be the anti-agency. So if you ever see any of our employees acting like, well, agency people, please let us know and we’ll respond immediately. Or right after our next meeting.

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