109: The Secrets to Creativity, Branding, and Loving Your Work, with Advertising Legend Alex Bogusky
During a creative career filled with awards and recognition, it took Alex Bogusky a while to realize that none of it mattered unless he loved the work.
“You could win the Grand Prix at Cannes—the next day you’re going to go into your office and look at the same dude across the office and try to think of something. It doesn’t feel any better; it didn’t make you any smarter; it doesn’t make anything any easier,” Bogusky says.
He did, in fact, win the most prestigious award at Cannes Advertising. Actually, under his leadership, the firm Crispin Porter + Bogusky won in all five categories, and became the world’s most awarded advertising agency. Bogusky himself was named Creative Director of the Decade by Adweek magazine, and Fast Company has called him both the Steve Jobs and the Elvis of advertising.
Looking over his many endeavors, Bogusky is a hard person to pin down. There’s a friendly, surfery quality about him, but he’s also gained a reputation as a perfectionist and ferocious supervisor. He’s worked for both car companies and Al Gore’s climate change initiative. He’s overseen iconic ad campaigns for junk food, and the most successful youth-focused anti-smoking campaign in U.S. history. Having left the agency six years ago, he’s now focusing on work with a social responsibility component, supporting multiple creative agencies and a startup accelerator.
But for all of the goals he’s achieved, Bogusky says the happiness he’s found in his career comes from loving the journey—that practice of sitting down with other people and thinking really hard to solve a problem.
“I’ve found that I had to learn to love the process and forget all the goals. Because the goals, as you achieved them, they didn’t really change anything.”
In this interview you will learn:
- How to embrace change and use it to fuel your creativity
- Why you need to listen to voices outside your startup and what it could mean for you
- When and where advertising and branding comes in for a business
- How to find opportunities to upset the status quo
- How you can start loving the journey regardless of its highs and lows
- & much more!