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Rolex

R

Interviewee

16 Art Director

Team Advantages

Team Disadvantages

0, 4

Project Outcome

Unsuccessful

Industry

Luxury

Location

New York

Team Risk Tolerance

Low

Team Dynamics

TeamDynamics_Indecisive

Company

Rolex


Yeah, it was good. It was easy. It was easy going. He respected me as an art director. I respected him as a writer. This was the first project we had worked on together and, like I was saying we had two guys above us that are extremely, extremely talented and so he and I would go back and forth on look and writing and then he'd take the writing and present it to the creative director who is the writer. And I'd take the art direction and present it to the creative director who's the art director, and it all sort of just came together in the end. And it turned out to be something pretty great, so ... [1395],[1272],[1271]
So how do we tell this in a way that allows the story to be the story? So why don't we use really beautiful, old historic photography that's true to the era, true to the location, the times? We did this incredibly extensive ... I, personally, in the art buying department, did this incredibly extensive process of researching photography from pre-and post-revolutionary Russia, from all the different countries that he moved from, at the dates, at the times, found all these photographs that were really powerful. A [1396]
Because we want to do some Federer TV, which is something that we don't do." And so I was thrilled about it. [1397]
And I guess the ideas weren't coming together. I think I had one vision as an art director and I think the writer wasn't in line with my vision. And I think everyone else was. So I think we had a bit of trouble going back and forth with the writer on that one. At least I did, personally. [1398],[1399],[1400]
We came up with some really great ideas. I was working with a different partner on this one. We came up with some really great ideas. And again, I'm a tennis player, so I was really passionate about it. The TV spots were all great. We had three individual campaigns. One was about anticipation and how he anticipates better than anyone, that's why he sort of looks like he moves effortly across the court. And the other two ideas were really great as well. And so I would've been happy to have made any of them. And so we went through rounds and rounds of creative and it was big ruling. And I guess the ideas weren't coming together. I think I had one vision as an art director and I think the writer wasn't in line with my vision. And I think everyone else was. So I think we had a bit of trouble going back and forth with the writer on that one. At least I did, personally. [1322],[1321],[1319],[1318],[1320]
So that was a bit difficult. But then we finally got it together. And everyone, internally, loved the work. The account team and the ECD's and senior creatives loved the work. Showed it to the client. They loved the work. Showed it to a few other clients around the world, sort of in stages, different meetings. And Rolex is definitely not an easy brand. They're very conservative, very set in their ways. They don't want to do anything that's outside of their box, which is a very small box. And then, we had managed to jump over all these hurdles and I was really thrilled about it. [1324],[1325],[1326],[1323]
They're very conservative, very set in their ways. They don't want to do anything that's outside of their box, which is a very small box. And then, we had managed to jump over all these hurdles and I was really thrilled about it. [1401]
And about a month ago, we had a shoot with Federer. And, of course, it's Roger Federer, so he has the final say on the work. And I was really excited. They were gonna present the work at the shoot. And I was up all night. I was ready. I was like, "Oh, it's getting presented. Wouldn't it be great if we could shoot it?" I was really excited. And then it all kind of flopped. And they never presented the work to him, and it all just kind of - [1328],[1327],[1329],[1330],[1331]
Well, the account team never presented the work. [1333],[1334],[1332]
I don't know. I think it had ... They said time constraints, but there's been a lot of going back and forth as to why it didn't get presented. So it was a little bit frustrating to hear that we had gone through all of this process and then they didn't even really give it the chance to work. [1336],[1335],[1338],[1337],[1402]
Well, they were at the shoot and that's when they were gonna present the work. And I'm not blaming them. I wasn't there. I don't know what happened. But the last word that I heard was that the client didn't want to present the work at that time because he wanted to do new work and have it more finished. Except this is the work that he had already approved himself previously, and had been through meetings with. So it was kind of like, "What? I don't understand." [1340],[1341],[1339]
So I think if it was a clear no, like, "We don't like the work. We're not presenting it," then I can take that. I can stomach that. But just the sort of lack of answer and explanation was probably the most frustrating and hardest thing to stomach. [1403],[1404],[1405],[1342],[1344],[1345],[1343]
Yeah, it was a lot of work. It was a lot of effort. And it just sort of went nowhere. [1347],[1348],[1346]
The senior client and the senior account guy here. I think they had a conversation and that's sort of where, that's where it came from. [1350],[1349]
I mean, the client's extremely conservative to begin with. But I think this was even more so than the usual just every day work that they do, because he is their main guy. So, in no way, shape or form would they ever want to stir the water there. And I think at one point he had left Rolex and that upset them very much. And then he came back. So now he's back and they'll basically do anything he asks them to do. [1406]
The risk for Rolex on this? Well, I think in our minds it wasn't that big of a deal. You present the work, if he likes it or he doesn't. But I think in their minds, Roger Federer is their golden child. So they're very cautious of how they use their time with him and how he feels treated, and how all that sort of pans out. They're extremely walking on a very thin rope. Only certain people are allowed to talk to him. Only certain people are allowed to be in the room and say anything to him. So I think, with this particular one, they were probably ... I mean, the client's extremely conservative to begin with. But I think this was even more so than the usual just every day work that they do, because he is their main guy. So, in no way, shape or form would they ever want to stir the water there. And I think at one point he had left Rolex and that upset them very much. And then he came back. So now he's back and they'll basically do anything he asks them to do. [1351],[1353],[1352],[1355],[1354]
They had set a budget, but it's basically, if Roger likes the idea, then we'll make the idea. [1356]
Were actually really tight. Because there's only a very small window of time that he allows people to even be in his life. I get he's a professional athlete. He's very disciplined, very strict training regimen. And, as a tennis player you play year-round. There's no definite season. There's the Grand Slam series, which sort of ... I would say, January through the end of the summer, you're not gonna get any of his time. So you kind of have like a four or five month window - [1358],[1357]
Where you schedule everything. And we had the shoot scheduled. But, we were finalizing these ideas in, probably, June. So that's already cutting it close anyway. So it looks like we'd have to present it, and then start shooting immediately. And then editing. And then have it all ready to roll out during the tournaments this year. So it was pretty tight. I mean, it was a matter of six months. [1360],[1359]
Yeah. Which also could have contributed to not presenting it. Because I think one of the ideas we'd talked about it, it was a bit complicated. So for us to actually shoot it and execute it in a right way, we would've needed two days of his time, which was more ... He'll give you an hour and a half. If you're lucky. And that's when he's not busy. So we would've needed about two days. So that's something we would've presented now and then shot in September. [1361]
Not shoot it yet. It was to present the idea, to see if he was on board with it, to see which one of the three he wanted to shoot. [1362]
And then they didn't even show any of it to him. [1364],[1363],[1365]
Not that, we didn't get a chance to do it. [1407]
And maybe they were being nice. Maybe they were being nice to me. I don't know. Who knows what happened? [1366]
It was good. We came up with some good ideas together. I got a bit frustrated at the end. And I think he could sort of read that, just because the ... He's not a tennis player. I don't really know if he's done very much athletics in his life. I think he has other interests, which is perfectly fine. But I just think the language that was being used and the way we were talking about things just wasn't what it should have been. And maybe I was just being particularly difficult. [1369],[1368],[1367],[1408],[1409]
We're both stumbling. [1371],[1370]
And then we had another guy came in who was much better, who is not still here as one of the creative directors, and he's a senior writer. And then things sort of came together, except we were up against such a tight window, to go through all that in the middle of it just made things a bit more stressful. [1410]
Being a bit difficult just because I was so close to the work and I had a lot of heart for it. And I really wanted it to be something great. And it just wasn't quite coming together. And there was a couple of ideas that I really loved, and they were more art directional, and so I didn't want to see them die because the writing wasn't working out. And we were sort of in an interim little period there for awhile where there was no senior writer on the project. So he was just a junior writer. And I'm just a junior art director. But there was no senior guidance writing wise, and so we had a freelancer come in who was just sort of a total flop. And then he was gone after a week. And then we had another guy came in who was much better, who is not still here as one of the creative directors, and he's a senior writer. And then things sort of came together, except we were up against such a tight window, to go through all that in the middle of it just made things a bit more stressful. [1374],[1373],[1375],[1372]
But there was never any ill will. It was just sort of a bit of frustration. It could've gone either way. I'm sure he was frustrated with me, too. It's not a big deal. But there was a bit of tension. [1376],[1377],[1411]
I think the inspiration came from my own personal experience as tennis player, and playing on the pro tour, and knowing what it's like to be out there on the court and knowing the sort of the things that you go through and the things that are going through your head. And the things that really frustrate you when you play against someone who's just really damn good. Just thinking you've hit an unbelievable shot, an unbelievable back hand, and then having it come back better. It just kind of gets to you a little bit. And there's just nothing you can do. So I think that's where a lot of it came from. Just my own ... [1412],[1378],[1413]
As usual. Rolex sort of is what it is. It's very ultra-conservative. [1379]
It's not like anyone was really pointing the finger or blaming, it was just sort of how it happened. But yeah, I think there was a few very frustrated conversations between myself and some of the account people, and the older creatives and the account people. And between all of us. I think it was just a bit of frustrating project. [1414]
Well, we kind of understand each other, but I think it got to the point where the writing just wasn't coming together, and so the idea wasn't coming together. So I think everyone was feeling a bit tense and a bit frustrated just as a whole group. [1415]
Well, we kind of understand each other, but I think it got to the point where the writing just wasn't coming together, and so the idea wasn't coming together. So I think everyone was feeling a bit tense and a bit frustrated just as a whole group. It's not like anyone was really pointing the finger or blaming, it was just sort of how it happened. But yeah, I think there was a few very frustrated conversations between myself and some of the account people, and the older creatives and the account people. And between all of us. I think it was just a bit of frustrating project. [1380]
There was times where I was really frustrated with the ECD just because ... I think I always had a really clear vision of what it was, and then the vision kept changing and people kept changing it. And in the end, nobody really knew what the idea was. [1382],[1381],[1383]
The idea was changing internally. Well, and the brief was sort of a moving target. Now that I think about it, they had the initial brief and it wasn't very specific, it was kind of broad. And then we present work and they'd be like, "Well you have to do this." [1384],[1385]
And we'd be like, "Well, you know, you didn't say that anywhere." And then we're like, "Okay, we'll do this." [1386],[1387]
And then it's like how many ideas can we cram into this? And so it was a bit of a moving target, but in the end, we were like, "Okay, this, this, this. That's it. No more." And then once it started to sit still a little bit, we still had a bit of trouble getting the idea to sort of work as a good idea. And so it was all just a bit frustrating, a bit tedious, and everyone was a bit burned out at the end of it. But the work was good in the end. The result was good. Everyone was happy with it. The print was really nice. It would've been nice to make. And then I think that was the icing on the cake, that everyone had been through all of that agony to try and pull it together, and then it didn't even see the light of day. [1388],[1390],[1389]
But the work was good in the end. The result was good. Everyone was happy with it. The print was really nice. It would've been nice to make. And then I think that was the icing on the cake, that everyone had been through all of that agony to try and pull it together, and then it didn't even see the light of day. [1391]
You spend months and months and then it just, at the last minute, gets the ax. [1394],[1392],[1393]
Reference Tags
[1395] Trust,[1272] Great example - Productive innovation norms,[1271] Trust,[1396] Creative Confidence,[1397] Believes one has a hopeful path,[1398] Alignment,[1399] Better than average,[1400] Unresolved relationship conflict,[1322] Communicating ideas across domains,[1321] Forceful conflict about ideas,[1319] Indecisive leadership,[1318] Reactance,[1320] Self-relevance effect,[1324] Risk compensation,[1325] Conservatism,[1326] Believes one has a hopeful path,[1323] Peak-end rule,[1401] Status quo bias,[1328] Dismissive,[1327] Indecisive leadership,[1329] Lack of organizational encouragement,[1330] Peak-end rule,[1331] Self-relevance effect,[1333] Dismissive,[1334] Lack of organizational encouragement,[1332] Peak-end rule,[1336] Dismissive,[1335] Indecisive leadership,[1338] Lack of organizational encouragement,[1337] Peak-end rule,[1402] Internal changes/challenges,[1340] Communication issues,[1341] Insufficient Feedback,[1339] Reactive devaluation,[1403] Alignment,[1404] Communication issues,[1405] Insufficient Feedback,[1342] Insufficient Feedback,[1344] Negativity bias,[1345] Peak-end rule,[1343] Reactance,[1347] Negativity bias,[1348] Peak-end rule,[1346] Reactance,[1350] Dismissive,[1349] Man blaming man,[1406] Risk compensation,[1351] Authority bias,[1353] Communication issues,[1352] Conservatism,[1355] Great example - External Influences,[1354] Yielding conflict about ideas,[1356] Appropriate resources,[1358] Planning fallacy,[1357] Unbalanced workload pressure,[1360] Planning fallacy,[1359] Unbalanced workload pressure,[1361] Planning fallacy,[1362] Yielding conflict about ideas,[1364] Dismissive,[1363] Lack of trust,[1365] Trust,[1407] Internal changes/challenges,[1366] Insufficient Feedback,[1369] Empathetic disposition,[1368] Forceful conflict about ideas,[1367] Indecisive leadership,[1408] Irreconcilable differences,[1409] Selfish motivation for the project,[1371] Avoiding conflict about ideas,[1370] Forceful conflict about ideas,[1410] Internal changes/challenges,[1374] Forceful conflict about ideas,[1373] Indecisive leadership,[1375] Lack of organizational encouragement,[1372] Self-relevance effect,[1376] Forceful conflict about ideas,[1377] Indecisive leadership,[1411] Irreconcilable differences,[1412] Creative Confidence,[1378] Self-relevance effect,[1413] Solitude disposition when stuck,[1379] Conservatism,[1414] Internal changes/challenges,[1415] Irreconcilable differences,[1380] Indecisive leadership,[1382] Indecisive leadership,[1381] Lack of organizational encouragement,[1383] Micromanaging,[1384] Indecisive leadership,[1385] Micromanaging,[1386] Indecisive leadership,[1387] Micromanaging,[1388] Indecisive leadership,[1390] Lack of organizational encouragement,[1389] Resilience,[1391] Optimism,[1394] Lack of trust,[1392] Peak-end rule,[1393] Trust

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MADISON BARNETT
I get my inspiration from the fictional world. I’m a social geek. Completely exploit 24/365 catalysts for change whereas high standards in action items. Conveniently whiteboard multifunctional benefits without enabled leadership.
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