How does one define happiness within advertising? Is it winning a new client? Is it getting a promotion? I guess how you interpret that quote is up to you. If you ask me, happiness is learning something new each day from the people you have the pleasure of working with. That is what I have been afforded the opportunity to do.
I’ve been put into a situation not many people can say they have been in – I have interned at FCB Global for three summers now. While most college interns would try different companies or industries, I chose to remain at the same company year after year for many reasons.
For starters, the people I worked with have made all the difference and made my experience so much greater. Whether it’s career advice from Jennifer Comiteau, lunch breaks with other interns or learning on the go with Allison Buenviaje, just to name a few, my supervisors and teams have been nothing but supportive and helpful. I have no doubt interns across the world could say the same things about their co-workers, but something seems different about FCB. Talent and teams are important everywhere, but FCB places an extra-special interest not only in recruiting top talent, but also in keeping its employees happy. Less than a month ago, after FCB Chicago won the Anheuser-Busch account, the New York office had a 2-hour Happy Hour in the office to celebrate.
Agency culture is vital to FCB’s success, and that culture starts at the top with our worldwide CEO, Carter Murray. I had the pleasure of meeting the man in charge in January 2014, just a few months into his tenure. Carter had heard a few stories about my experience as a previous summer intern, and it was clear from our initial conversation that he genuinely cared about my experience here. After a brief chat and quick photo for Instagram, I shook Carter’s hand and thanked him for his time. Shortly after leaving his office, I saw his caption on Instagram saying how he just met a “star intern,” and is trying to convince him not to interview anywhere else when he graduates in 2016. Needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised by his caption, and left the building with a smile on my face.
Now in my third summer, it is safe to say I have interacted with just about every department of the agency. I began my career in the corporate communications and creative departments, where I spent my days publicizing our work to the world. In my second year I moved to New York new business, where I learned the ins and outs of how FCB wins its accounts. Now, after three years, my journey has landed me in a global new business development role. Although my title had the word “intern” in it each summer, the roles differed in many ways. Corporate communications was very writing-focused and structured, whereas creative and new business allowed for a bit more creative thinking and strategic planning. While the various teams I have worked with operated in their own ways and implemented different strategies, at the end of the day, everybody held true to FCB’s culture that we are “brave together.”
Having spent nearly two years in new business, I can certainly attest to Mr. Don Draper’s idea that “change is neither good or bad, it simply is.” Despite the fact that change is constant, I have always enjoyed my time working at FCB Global, and that is the very reason why I keep coming back. While business has its ups and downs, the people I have gotten to know at FCB have helped me grow as a young professional in more ways than I can count, as I enter my senior year of college at American University.
One lesson I had to learn fairly early was that new business pitches do not always go your way. But what I took away is that you can’t let it keep you down for long. You have to be able to move on and grow from your mistakes. Despite the long days, meetings and frustration, the new business process has been a tremendous learning experience for me.
With each summer providing a different experience than the one before it, interning at FCB has been quite the ride. By now, I have met and interacted with almost every discipline in the agency, worked on a wide variety of projects and pitches, and most importantly, solidified my interest in the advertising industry and FCB as an agency. It is rare for someone to intern at the same place for three years, but when the chemistry is as good of a match as it is here for me, there is no reason for me to intern anywhere else.
FCB is a special place to me. I have seen this place grow and evolve into the agency it is today. I witnessed the transition from DraftFCB back to FCB, experienced Carter Murray taking the global reins as Worldwide CEO, and most importantly, have witnessed the work of this company firsthand. To me, that is happiness in advertising: being a part of something that is unique and exciting each day, with people you like, that makes coming to work enjoyable. To quote Carter Murray’s famous Instagram hashtag, it truly is all about #talentaboveallelse.