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Your project will fail without this person

No matter how genius the concept, how legendary the agency is, or how massive the budget is, your campaign is doomed to fail without a very specific person in a very specific role.

Who is this make-or-break individual? It's not me, the brilliant creative director, as much as I'd love to take credit. It's also not necessarily a high-ranking manager or executive, although having organizational heft can help. The key attribute this person needs is an innate fighter spirit.

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I'm talking about the internal battering ram who will demolish any resistance and inertia trying to shut down bold, new creative ideas. This person is the human offensive line, paving the way for the running back of creativity to burst through and gain major yardage. Without the Fighter absorbing those bone-crunching hits, the best ideas will get tackled for a loss.

Every company has natural forces aligned to instinctively reject anything too risky or unfamiliar, even if the organization supposedly values innovation. It's human nature to be skeptical of drastic departures from the norm. 

Whenever an edgy concept arises, the typical knee-jerk reaction is, "We've never done anything like that before." People unconsciously compare new ideas against the blended average of all the brand's prior work, and anything too divergent gets dismissed as laughably off-brand.

It's like when your favorite artist drops a new song. That first listen, you think, "I don't know about this...it kind of sucks." You're judging the fresh creative against the established archetype in your brain. Only after giving it a few more listens do you realize the song is actually amazing.

That's where your fierce Fighter comes in – your protector who willfully breaks the established mold. While others default to risk-aversion and sanitizing ideas to death, your Fighter recognizes the value in making calculated, strategic gambles on creative frontiers.

This role is more about personal mindset than job title or rank. I've seen many junior staffers embrace that Fighter mantle and vehemently carry the torch for bold visions.

Find your risk-tolerant defender and equip your noble protector with full armor and weaponry to slay every boring objection. Mandate that your Fighter uphold a brand-elevating philosophy where leaving your stale comfort zone is the expectation, not the exception.





Picture of Guy bauer, founder of umault

Guy has been making commercial videos for over 20 years and is the author of “Death to the Corporate Video: A Modern Approach that Works.” He started the agency in 2010 after a decade of working in TV, film and radio. He’s been losing hair and gaining weight ever since.

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