Creative Services Week

Having been fore-warned that this would be one of the most important weeks of our training, to be incredibly nice to the Traffic Managers, and to wear sensible shoes, we started this week a little apprehensive, It definitely didn’t help that we were still a little unsure what ‘Creative Services’ even meant.

The reason behind the footwear choice (no noisy women’s brogues for Chris this week) became obvious the moment we realized who and what the flashes were that would stream past our desks throughout the day – Traffic Managers move at speed. Their role in Leo’s (and each agency defines them quite differently, some are even silly enough to try and operate without them) is to ensure that creative work becomes fully functional on time, on budget, and with the greatest of production ease.

Other brands of utilitarian shoes are available.

Their responsibilities, inboxes and to-do lists seem endless. In short, they organize the creative and production work flow. Sourcing budgets and production talent; liaising with almost every department of the agency from art to finance; production, pre-production, pre-pre-production meeting and checking, double-checking and triple-checking with the studio and retouching to make sure everything is progressing smoothly. All of this whilst us pesky account management would really like everything done ten minutes ago.

For the first time the Foundry was separated (sob), and assigned to shadow, stalk, and generally hover awkwardly over the Traffic Managers responsible for Kellogg’s, McDonalds and both Arc and Lime (shopper marketing and experiential). I am fairly certain anyone who works in Creative Services at Leo’s would be a shoe-in for the Diplomatic Corps, given the fierce efficiency, speed and tact with which they operate.

Information architect? Front-end developer? User Experience Specialist? Hypermedia Manager? I thought these were terms for Google employees and in sci-fi novels. However, thanks to an incredibly in-depth ‘introduction’ from the only Digital Traffic Manager at Leo’s, we are now completely au-fait with this kind of techno-lingo. Ish.

Nobody likes Tuesday nights, unless you’re a massive fan of the new series of Geordie Shore (…guilty). But by holding the first of the (hopefully many) grad meals, we may have just turned around the fortunes of this unloved week-day. Joined by our grad-parents, grad-grandparents and grad-great-grandfather (sorry Steven) we had a merry old time out in Covent Garden eating and gossiping over a bottle or three of the house wine. Big thanks to the organizers and to whomever ordered the Limoncello…

Having seen Charlie and Chris present so confidently and articulately at the assessment day all the way back in November, I was not relishing our Thursday task of a ‘business presentation’ in front of them and the inspirational-yet-ever-so-slightly-terrifyingly presence of our trainer Louise. So a big congratulations to Charlie who is now “less camp” and to Chris who is “less monotone”; even if I have become “enthusiastic to the point of frightening”.

The Pre-Louise Foundry

Superbowl XLVI turned out to be a real bummer – where was the humor, excitement and swagger of past years? Rehashing old favourites and yet another canine advert? Not impressed. Dear American advertising industry, Tamar Lawson 5-week trainee-grad says: must do better.

And lastly, an update on our mock-Freeview brief; we (think) at long last we have knocked it into fighting shape. Annoyingly, we overheard what direction the actual brief is taking, sooo we are now going to push it in along a rather different route. Find out next week if this was a disastrously embarrassing decision…

– Tamar


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