I sometimes am asked to speak to different kinds of students about their career options. It might be U Vic or Royal Roads undergrads, or high school students. A while back I had a really challenging gig: speaking to my daughter’s Grade 2 class. Man, I was nervous.
When you’re talking to little kids and everything comes down to your ability to hold their attention (or they will start wiping boogers on the kids beside them), you have to get real, real fast.
Why is advertising a good career and why would Grade 2 kids give a crap about something so far down the road?
Because it’s fun.
I showed them a direct marketing piece I did for Telus. When you open it, a few dozen little bunnies fall on the floor. The entire class scrambled to scoop them up in this gigantic, screaming, midget moshpit. A hilarious, chaotic moment.
It wouldn’t have worked on the U Vic students, who are so blasé about bunnies.
The kids asked me so many questions:
> Do you have rabbits in your office? (No, but we have dogs.)
> Do you work in a zoo? (Yes)
> Does Lola – that’s my daughter – give you ideas? (She gives me all of them.)
> Would you rather be a doctor? (I couldn’t have dogs in the office if I was doctor!)
> Is that ketchup on your face? (Yes, um, actually. Hmm.)
They agreed that it was a COOL job and I walked out of that classroom realizing what a killer career choice I have made.
If what you do for a living seems exciting to kids, it will probably be exciting for adults too. And that makes for a good long-term job.
A few weeks later I was asked to speak on a panel to U Vic students about career options and, for a change, I knew exactly what I wanted to talk about.