Some time ago, an account team member told me that a particular task was a waste of their time. They also referred to it as “dumb shit” that gets in the way of their “important work”.
I’m going to admit that arrogant statements like these irritate me for a variety of reasons. A couple of the main ones are:
1) In this particular time in the US when millions are out of work, anyone with a great job in their career should not look down on any thing they are getting paid to do.
And 2) The mentality that completing certain tasks (that, btw, are actually part of one’s job) are beneath one’s value makes that person toxic to a team.
In a team, everyone steps up to the plate to achieve a larger goal. When one member complains about what they have to do or refuses to step up, everyone on the team suffers. However, if everyone is willing to do what is necessary, the project is completed on a more pleasant note. When you are able to see that EVERYTHING that is done for a project, campaign, or initiative is important, you provide more value to your agency. No agency needs an arrogant team member making things difficult for the agency or client.
When I was working as a graphic artist at a newspaper designing ads, my boss told us a story of his very first job out of college. He was a photography major, and wanted to go to exotic places and take breathtaking photos. His first job though was taking pictures of toy dinosaurs for a bank. He hated it and complained. His boss at the time told him that he was an asshole for not seeing what a good opportunity he had, and that instead of complaining, he should be figuring out how he could take pictures of the dinosaurs the most innovative ways he could. And that’s what he did.
This story has stuck with me since my sophomore year of college. The message I’ve integrated into everything I did for work after college. The payoff is a better mentality, and a better motivation to see opportunity in every task (no matter how “beneath me” some may deem it) I get. Which means, I can provide better ideas and be a source for future innovation…
That team member who referred to certain aspects of working at the agency as “dumb shit” is no longer at my agency. Was it just their attitude? I doubt it. I do believe it was how their attitude affected their work.