What does experience count for these days?

28 Jul

I was filling out my profile for a new business pitch last week and I found myself going through the motions: 25 years of marketing and advertising experience working on virtually all types of … blah blah blah.

We lead with our years in the biz under the assumption that it gives us cred. Experience counts for a lot right?

But then I thought: this is a social media proposal.  Too many ad agencies have been hangly grimly on to the tail of this one trying to figure out how to tame it. Do my years in the agency world add up to anything in this new space? Do they position me as someone who’s been through the baptismal fires and can do this stuff in my sleep, or as a doddery all fart who’s all wrapped up in old-school thinking and is doing it out of necessity?

Does experience count for anything anymore?

Do the seasoned veterans bring perspective, maturity and big-picture thinking? Or are we just the generation that found itself increasingly irrelevant with the shift from traditional push advertising to consumer engagement?

Here’s what I think: it all comes down to whether the experienced individual, who’s invested 20, 30 or 40  years of his or her life in this industry, likes the idea of change.

If change is exciting and makes you glad you picked advertising over, say, pumpkin farming, you are no doubt a relevant and engaged member of your team.

If you find the change irritating, confusing and too Gen-Y, you should probably start thinking about a new career before that becomes an imperative.

Advertising has always been a young person’s game. The ante for the veterans just got upped.


5 Responses to “What does experience count for these days?”

  1. variedthinking November 23, 2010 at 4:09 pm #

    Was it because of Taxi ad agency hitches a ride with London’s WPP
    http://www.ctv.ca/generic/generated/static/business/article1806833.html that you thought that you might be getting long at the tooth in the business.

    You might not be Gen-Y but your not over the hill yet.

  2. dougbrowncreative November 23, 2010 at 4:26 pm #

    I’m the guy who was glad he picked advertising over pumpkin farming. Not to worry…I’m going to need to work until I’m 80 anyway to pay for the 20 years after that.

  3. designingrenee November 24, 2010 at 5:40 pm #

    I thrive on change and on constant re-invention, so I found this blog entry pretty darn encouraging. 🙂

    I love a good gourd, though, I must say.

  4. dougbrowncreative November 24, 2010 at 5:51 pm #

    Do you have anything against carving them up and ripping out their guts?

  5. designingrenee November 24, 2010 at 5:58 pm #

    That’s the best part!

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