The Second-Best Advice I Ever Received

My new creative director called me into his office, and I knew it wasn’t going to be good. I had just uprooted my family and moved a thousand miles away to start my dream job. The only problem was, my dream job was anything but and everything that could be going wrong was going wrong.

After I took a seat, my creative director leaned back in his chair and said two words, “Do better.” That was it. No anger on one hand or words of encouragement on the other. Just: do better. Meeting over. In advertising, simple is always better. This advice is no exception. No matter your job, you can always do better. Creatives can always push to do better work. Account people can always find ways to better serve their clients. And agencies can always build better cultures.

“Do better” distinguishes the remarkable agencies from the good ones. But what I like best about these words is that they go beyond the office. In life, we can all do better. We can be better husbands and wives, parents and children, neighbors and friends. It takes effort, but the results are worth it.

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