A MESSAGE FROM THE HOME OFFICE
Posted by Fabrick on 01 February 2021
Recent and prolonged circumstances have forced us into working differently over the past year. Being part of an industry that has the capabilities to work remotely, we have found ourselves in the fortunate position of taking to this approach like the proverbial duck to water. We’re also fortunate that we work for another industry that has remained generally buoyant throughout these strangest of times, meaning that it has been keen to sought out our services as enthusiastically as it always has done.
These two pieces of good fortune have not been lost on us and we’ve not taken it for granted. Although our working environment has become somewhat disparate, we’ve focussed on keeping the channels of communication open, as this is essential to our collaborative approach.
As a creative, I’m familiar with the ‘working from home’ process; this concept has permeated our sector since the idea of graphic design was birthed. The image of the designer crawling out of bed, sticking the kettle on, yawning and blurry-eyed; crashing out on the sofa to indulge in just one more half-hour of breakfast television before cracking on, is one that is as old as the Bayeux Tapestry. If such a vision was depicted in the Bayeux Tapestry, the part showing Harold and his unfortunate one-on-one arrow and eyeball interaction incident would no doubt be replaced by a scruffy individual in their underwear, indulging in a one-on-one Lorraine Kelly and eyeball interaction incident.
So no, it’s not an alien concept. But as old as the idea itself is the debate involving the pros and cons of homeworking. As touched on above, to really reach the dizzy heights of homeworker extraordinaire, one must be incredibly disciplined. With home comforts at one’s disposal, it’s very easy to succumb to the alluring dream pairing of sofa and television. However, the very nature of creative design dictates that ideas don’t always come when you really (really) want them to, so a bit of a break from anguished, desk manacled head-scratching could be a wise move.
To have that alone time can be a real boom; to close down all potential distractions and sit (or stand) with sketchpad and pen in a quiet room and allow ideas to flow. Sometimes this can be the best way to crack a brief, an exercise in mindfulness where the head is being allowed to focus on that specific goal.
Naturally, this approach doesn’t always guarantee the bearing of fruit. And this takes us back to collaborative working and how, as an agency, we’ve remained in contact with each other to ensure team involvement in some of our larger projects.
Our recent campaign for long-term client, MEDITE SMARTPLY, is a good case in point. Sandwiched somewhere between LD2 and LD3, we were briefed by the company to create something big for them – a fully integrated awareness campaign that focussed on the MEDITE arm of the organisation. One that took in online and offline press advertising, billboard advertising, P.O.S, online membership incentive packs and radio and television spots. This was very exciting and we were all looking forward to getting stuck in. The television angle was particularly exciting as this was reasonably unchartered waters for us, but the challenge was greeted with unanimous enthusiasm.
The challenge was increased further by the uncertainty of our so-called normal working hours. But of course, this is the 21st century and technology allows us to always be in contact, whichever tier we might be locked into.
And that’s what we did, ultimately cracking the brief and delivering an immediately iconic campaign.
This is one that couldn’t have been tackled by one individual, sitting on their sofa, gorging on a bowl of Cheerios. That said, for my part, there was a moment whilst sitting on my sofa early one morning, that I sat keenly scribbling out a potential narrative for a television ad before recording it into my phone (using my best ad-friendly vocal tones). This was packaged and sent onto the rest of the team where it was met with approval. Naturally, my initial ramblings needed a reasonable amount of tidying but therein lies the beauty of collaborative working. Every last person’s involvement and contribution was paramount to the successful delivery of the final product, from initial discussion of ideas to the creation of visuals onto copywriting and dedicated hands-on account management.
This is a campaign that we are all very proud of and is testament to what can be achieved when we’re all working towards the same goal. So whether you’re sitting at your office desk enjoying the back and forth, good-natured ribbing of work colleagues, or sitting remotely, spinning concepts whilst being semi-distracted by a patented Piers Morgan rant on morning television, keep the channels of communication open, support each other and keep the team spirit alive.
Darryl Hartley, Fabrick