Stop mind reading.

Trying to read the creative director’s mind may be the thing that’s holding you back. The truth may be that your fearless leader has no idea what to do, which is why you’re being hauled in to help solve the problem. Do what you think is right, then present it. The discussion around your efforts may help focus the search.

Most creative directors are just like clients: they know it when they see it. Lay out some options. Trying to use ESP can paralyze your thinking. Follow the input, and your heart, and go make the work you think is right.


David Fowler created long-running advertising campaigns for Motel 6 ("We'll leave the light on for you"), BP ("Beyond Petroleum"), Fanta ("Wanta Fanta"), Claritin ("Claritin Clear") and many others. His forty-year creative career included twenty years at Ogilvy & Mather in New York, as well as stints at Goodby, Silverstein in San Francisco, Ammirati & Puris in New York and The Richards Group in Dallas.