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Opinion on most stressful role in an agency? Had this debate today with friends 🙃

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Taking the C-suite out of it, I have to say creatives. I’m not saying my job doesn’t have its share of stress and sleepless nights. But a creatives livelihood is based on the currency of their ideas. They pour their heart and soul into projects and throw it in front of (seemingly) an execution squad every time they present to clients. The day-to-day job is physically exhausting but I’m sure the emotional and mental strain of the entire creative process is absolutely draining. And if you aren’t selling in ideas, you aren’t growing in your role or delivering on your job. Man, that’s tough. I have a tremendous amount of respect for my creative teams and try to do my part to ease that stress.

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likeupliftingsmart
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HI I LOVE YOU

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A parent

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i get what you mean. but being a parent isn’t an agency role. that’s like me saying bi-polar, clinical depression and severe anxiety. that’s not the role. that’s my own personal shit. has no bearing with my actual role at the company or what is expected of me. disability or not.

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I’ve been working for a long time and account is awful- the abuse, blame shifting, politics, clients berating you bc they can’t do their job and the hours are inhumane BUT creative have it the worst. The industry has changed and ideas are not valued that much anymore... yet our creative teams still approach briefs with hope and passion. They have shorter timelines, more deliverables and typically leaner teams so fewer resources. And after the 10th client presentation they are still explaining, with passion, how the idea works in a Facebook post... creative wins the vote from this account person.

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Is CD5 secretly an account guy?

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likefunny
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Head of new business. Or new business team

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I agree. Whenever anything is going wrong we all point to new business and ask why we aren’t winning anything. As if it’s the new biz teams fault

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C-Level is stressful? Come on. Making $500k+ ungodly bonuses. If they’re let go they get huge severance packages and can easily find new jobs anywhere they want? C-Level is not stressful guys. They might work a lot but they’re not worried that their 10 year old car has $1,500 worth of repairs and how you have to dip into your savings to pay for it. Don’t feel bad about c-levels stress. They’re the most grossly overpaid people on the planet

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likehelpful
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@ Google — are you responding to VP Director 1 or SR AM 1? I assumed the latter but was curious nonetheless

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Junior employee with an over-the-hill manager clinging to their job so they can coast until retirement working on an account with a new, impossible-to-please CMO.

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It was a reference to a previous team I worked on, and the manager told me straight up how difficult it is to find a job at 50+ and that he really just wanted to coast and take an early retirement package if they wanted him out, but that he would have to sell me out if anything went wrong to save himself. It was a weird dynamic. It actually worked out well for me as I got great experience.

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Administrative assistants who work for people who travel constantly and think their admins are on call 24/7. They should make double whatever their salaries are

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Hell of a question. Unfortunately there may not be enough mutual perspective to find consensus. For instance, Account could make a claim because many things fall squarely on our shoulders. Conversely, we often determine deadlines which pressure our teams, etc. Vertically speaking, it’s hard to argue against CEO taking the cake here

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likeuplifting
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Wow! Can I work with you lovely creative partner 😍

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I’d hate to be account. Always stuck between a rock and a hard place

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likefunny
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that is what i am saying. you have clients passive aggressively yelling at you. then when you have to deliver that message you’ve got creatives just outright aggressively yelling at you. going to take a hard pass on that. i’ll be over here googling the difference between a faun and a satyr and figuring out if it is actually more logical that it should be a centaur.

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Business development. Especially at a holding company level. No one likes you but they're all forced to begrudgingly work with you. 😥

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Creatives. The lack of control over our own time and work is incredibly stressful. Not just talking about late nights and crazy turnaround times, but also we have no idea if we are going to be asked to do something completely different than what we’re working on in 15 minutes because someone else thinks it’s more important. Also the stuff someone said earlier about basically working on ideas every day and putting them out there even though we know 95% will die.

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All of C suite

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Different types handle stress differently, right? Writers, for example (broad example) are easily stressed. Art Directors are reflexively defensive, and therefore handle stress well. Account and Strat people handle stress by assigning it to others.

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funny
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No one has mentioned production. Just an observation

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they are built to never be stressed out.

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New biz director

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Managing Director. You’re the fall guy. Not senior enough to be impervious to client losses, but senior enough to bear the burden of responsibility for what goes awry. P&L rests firmly on your shoulders. Client relationships are your ballywick. Talent acquisition and retention is your problem too. It’s a lot of shit to be responsible for, and much of it really is beyond your direct control.

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unless you an account person. and you think it’s your own role. you are lying to yourself and lack empathy.

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The CD is the hardest role in an agency. To use an analogy they are like a Captain in an army given a mission to go capture some important hill. They have to command the troops, draw up battle plans and execute them and please the brass without getting killed from all the bullets flying. It's crazy.

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