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Shell

S

Interviewee

189 Art Director

Team Advantages

Team Disadvantages

0, 0

Project Outcome

Unsuccessful

Industry

Transportation

Location

Cape Town

Team Risk Tolerance

Low

Team Dynamics

TeamDynamics_Indecisive

Company

Shell


We were sent down a creative ruse that was very vague. Our client had, Shell had just relocated to Johannesburg and it lost all of it's key brand people so their team was totally disorganized. Without structure and without leadership. And without any experience in working with an agency, really. So, we were working on a brief that was really vague that excluded the most powerful brief points and we went on quite a long, bumpy ride and ended up with the Shell Diesel Revolution. [8901],[8878],[8909],[8910]
Without structure and without leadership. And without any experience in working with an agency, really. So, we were working on a brief that was really vague that excluded the most powerful brief points and we went on quite a long, bumpy ride and ended up with the Shell Diesel Revolution. [8929],[8930],[8931]
You know, creatively. Photographically. Visually. Messaging wise. It was just horrible. (laughs) [8879]
I think the client's total disarray. [8911]
Their lack of understanding of the value of Le Mans leverage, you know. I believe it is sure Le Mans is niche. How many people sit down and watch a race for 24 hours? Nobody. I think it's a fantastic brief point to stand up and say "We're going to be winning this thing three times in a row." That is, if you drive a diesel car, it's an immediate something that you can recognize. Even if you don't, if you aren't into motor racing. [8932],[8933],[8881],[8880]
Failing the Le Mans thing aside. It was nothing of substance that came from the client that we could actually work on. There was nothing that was saying "This is what we're standing for. This is what we're representing" because they're totally ignoring what the rest of the world was doing, so yeah. [8882],[8912]
I think that they were having the difficulty of understanding the context and were sitting there as consumers and thinking "I don't sit and watch motor sports so I'm not going to be interested in this brief point." Possibly. [8914],[8934],[8899],[8935],[8913]
Also, the team had been just totally - totally disintegrated basically. There was nobody taking part. They were trying to put in a new organizational structure I guess and culture. To the point that nobody was actually standing up for a piece of work that worked. It was all 'vote by committee' so anything that was presented, all it required was one person with a reason. No matter how bizarre. To actually kill whatever was presented. [8936],[8891],[8896],[8937],[8902],[8916],[8915],[8938],[8939]
I think even them as a team realized that it's rubbish. It's not something that is generally done. Everybody has their opinion, but then somebody disagrees with them can actually speak up and you can carry a project through with a sense of leadership that can see sense. It's not all that common. It's the first time I've come across it, but it is what was at Shell at the time. [8900],[8903],[8883],[8904]
We were pulling concepts out of the hat and it was that one that eventually got through. [8897],[8892]
I think that the decision ultimately ended up with the client. We presented a number of things and that was where we ended up. [8893]
We had obviously [inaudible 00:39:32] internally what was put forward and strategically we were having problems because we weren't getting much, sort of strategic direction and input from client. They weren't listening to our strategic input. [8918],[8940],[8917],[8941]
Yeah. It was - the brief was "We don't want Le Mans." So to prove the V-Power diesel's power line, which is "more power for longer". We had to ditch Le Mans basically. [8942]
Budget wise, I think we were in budget. Time wise, we were way late. Budget wise, I think they actually cut the budget. [8908],[8884]
I think at that time, really. Desperate and untrusting. I would come from a position where we had good team based trust and relationships with certain people with the client who had left. I think that was really evident - that those people had left and they were champions of agency, kind of thing. We had worked hard at building a good trust and relationship with them. The head of their brand team was an ex agency person so had insights into how to work with agencies. The other key person had, I think close on twenty years experience at Shell. Was really insightful into the brand, what it's nuances were. What it stood for. And both of them had left. [8920],[8919]
Yeah. The head of brand was escorted to the door basically. The woman with really long term knowledge had left under not very happy circumstances. [8921]
I think yeah. The people who had been really strong - had really strong relationships had left and we were left with people who were perhaps threatened by those strong relationships. Or were trying to then in this power vacuum trying to prove themselves. [8922],[8923],[8943]
I think you build on relationships and project for project you do. You build. You grow and you get better. The longer time you work with a person or with a group of people, the better your work gets. The more insightful you are of each other's needs and of each other's targets. [8944],[8924]
I think that (laughs) that inherently we always try to do something better. I think that if we've done something well that gives us a springboard to actually go on and do something better from there and if something's gone wrong, then we can build in perhaps processes or ways of dealing with those clients that will actually make work around the problems we've had before. I think that's inherent nature of what we do. [8925]
I think that's aside from personal and personality clashes which obviously do the opposite. If you can't work together, that's clearly an issue. I think that different clients have different ways of working and different expectations and it's really understanding what those are. And how you work with them. [8888],[8926],[8894]
If they don't have the experience of working with an agency and an agency's processes then it's a question of almost, spoon feeding them a bit more. Given creatively, they're not used to seeing a scan to represent an idea. Doing a digital scan so they can see some sort of better visual representation. Just doing little things that will help them along the line of building trust. [8927],[8885],[8889]
( laughs) I think that there needs to be some sort of conflict resolution put in place. I think it is really dumb. I think that, you know not really from a creative point of view because we can stand back and get on with the next project and ignore it but I think from a client service point of view of when people are needing to work with those clients on a daily basis. It can be really destructive and I don't know what the solution would be there. [8945],[8946],[8905]
People not answering phone calls. Being rude to each other. It's - once a person has totally lost respect for another human being, it's really difficult to move into a space where they have a positive interaction. They've set them - when people expect somebody to be a certain way then, to a large extent, those expectations are fulfilled. Not necessarily by people doing those things. It's a self-fulfilling prophecy that you expect something to be and you create your own affect I guess. [8947],[8948],[8906],[8907]
Great. We've worked together as a team for a long time. We understand each other's strengths and weaknesses. It's good. The agency was set out to service Shell business and to a large extent the people who've - that long term exposure was working on that. On the project. [8890]
Planning was good. The difficulty really was that the strategic objectives kept changing and there wasn't - not necessarily from our strategy department, they were a bit lost as well because the direction kept changing. But yeah. We worked really well with our strategy department again. [8949],[8898],[8928]
I think that as far as engaging consumers that project was a total waste of money and time. Really. It was something that should never have happened. It should never have gone through. It was a total act of desperation and I'd be happy to never see any of their work ever again. (laughs) [8887],[8950],[8886],[8951]
I think everything. Our initial - I couldn't say our initial idea because we had quite a few good ideas that didn't fly. I think our relationship with clients. The design and work itself. The photography. The - I think everything could've been better, really. [8895]
Reference Tags
[8901] Indecisive leadership,[8878] Inexperience,[8909] Internal changes/challenges,[8910] Vague goals,[8929] Indecisive leadership,[8930] Vague goals,[8931] Vague roles,[8879] Reactive devaluation,[8911] Internal changes/challenges,[8932] Alignment,[8933] Empathetic disposition,[8881] Inexperience,[8880] Irrational escalation,[8882] Reactive devaluation,[8912] Vague goals,[8914] Communication issues,[8934] Dismissive,[8899] Empathetic disposition,[8935] Forceful conflict about ideas,[8913] Vague goals,[8936] Alignment,[8891] Avoiding conflict about ideas,[8896] Avoiding conflict about relationships,[8937] Indecisive leadership,[8902] Indecisive leadership,[8916] Insufficient Feedback,[8915] Internal changes/challenges,[8938] Lack of organizational encouragement,[8939] Lack of resources,[8900] Empathetic disposition,[8903] Indecisive leadership,[8883] Irrational escalation,[8904] Lack of trust,[8897] Resilience,[8892] Yielding conflict about ideas,[8893] Yielding conflict about ideas,[8918] Communication issues,[8940] Dismissive,[8917] Insufficient Feedback,[8941] Vague goals,[8942] Reactance,[8908] Appropriate resources,[8884] Planning fallacy,[8920] Internal changes/challenges,[8919] Trust,[8921] Internal changes/challenges,[8922] Internal changes/challenges,[8923] Trust,[8943] Win-win conflict about relationships,[8944] Empathetic disposition,[8924] Trust,[8925] Trust,[8888] Communicating ideas across domains,[8926] Trust,[8894] Win-win conflict about ideas,[8927] Communication issues,[8885] Inexperience,[8889] Trust,[8945] Alignment,[8946] Reactance,[8905] Unresolved relationship conflict,[8947] Irreconcilable differences,[8948] Lack of trust,[8906] Lack of trust,[8907] Unresolved relationship conflict,[8890] Trust,[8949] Appropriate resources,[8898] Resilience,[8928] Vague goals,[8887] Hindsight bias,[8950] Reactance,[8886] Reactance,[8951] Reactive devaluation,[8895] Yielding conflict about ideas

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MADISON BARNETT
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