Why would you want to come up with anything new?
It just gets in the way of doing the same things that your boss did before you, and his before that.
Nothing’s changing, not really, it’s all the same game… write a powerpoint presentation, make a telly ad, put it on telly, repeat every year ad infinitum.
Everyone gets paid, media folk go to lunches at The Ivy, advertising folk go to shoots in Argentina, digital folk go and get their microscooter pimped in Hoxton.
Why rock the boat? We’re onto a good thing here, people…
If you go learning things, reading things, forming opinions on stuff, then go around writing and sharing these thoughts… well, how’s that going to make your agency better?
So, I guess, the IPA Excellence Diploma isn’t helping anyone at all.
I blame the tutors. For a bunch of so-called industry greats, they really should know better. Let’s name names; Nick Kendall, Chris Forrest, Jim Taylor, Peter Field, Gerry Moira, Mark Lund… all guilty, to a man. Especially Kendall, he’s the ringleader.
You’d have thought they’d have just covered the ‘how to get ads made and shown as quickly as possible’ bit, and done everyone a favour. But no.
Six modules, on just about every conceivable topic… brands, people, channels, measurement, creativity and leadership.
They they give you a two months to read endless amounts of brilliant discourse on each area, after which you’ve then got to write a 2,000 word essay on ‘what you believe…’.
And if that weren’t bad enough, at the end of it all you’ve got to craft a 7,000 word thesis on what it all means… where the future of our industry lies.
Frankly, it’s asking for trouble. So unsurprisingly, over the four years of the course it’s produced endless amounts of trouble makers… Faris, Sam, Graeme, Matt, Alex, Chris, Chris, Bethan… the list goes on.
In fact, I was at the graduation last night of the class of 2010 (I mentored Ben Harrison at Rocket this year), and it turns our there are 66 of us who’ve gone through the course so far…
Which is enough, surely, yes? How can the industry expect to stay firmly stuck in the nineties if we keep teaching our best people to think better, more revolutionary thoughts?
So, this is where you come in.
I want you to email Chloe at the IPA (firstname.lastname@example.org), and rule yourself out now.
I dunno, say something like “Chloe, if you were to send out any information about the next intake of the IPA Excellence Diploma in 2011, I would be in no way interested AT ALL. I am happy sitting here in blissful ignorance, because life is easier that way”.
Or, if you’re the boss of a someone who’s looking like they might unfortunately turn out to be brilliant, maybe say “Dear Chloe, I would request that you refrain from sending my charge any information on this course, because they’re enough trouble as it is with all their ‘great ideas’, and I don’t’t want them having any more”.
So please, please, for the sake of the comfortable, easy, unchallenging world we all seek to protect, email Chloe right now.
Of course, you may take a different view.
You may think the the only thing that’s stupid about the Excellence Diploma is that there isn’t a five year waiting list to be on it.
But, you know, maybe that’s just you. And me. And a fair few other people.
Either way, drop Chloe an email (email@example.com). Ask her about the Excellence Diploma. And make up your own mind…