Hi, I’m Alan.
I’m a Creative Director and copywriter in Los Angeles. I’ve been doing this job for about 16 years.
Rather than crush your soul with buzzwords (“I’m a strategically-minded lateral thinker who loves brand engagement and dogs!”), I’m going to tell you ten things that I like. And they’re going to be in a list because this is the Internet and there are rules.
Things I Like (Abridged)
- When the person next to you has an idea so great that the whole room gets caffeinated
- Karaoke-ing Prince
- Advertising that rewards your attention
- A brief that has a real, honest to god insight in it
- Clients who respect their audience
- Joakim Noah—everything about him
- When the idea you wrote for yourself is the one that everyone gets excited about
- Greasy gyros
- When the pad gets hot and 30 jokes fall out
- Honorable mention goes to Thin Lizzy in the summer, Paul F Tompkins on a podcast and Kumail Nanjani, Birthday Loan Officer.
In the course of getting old, I’ve also developed some opinions on what makes a good leader in this business. I’m going to share them here because I pay for this website so I get to decide what goes where.
Things that I’ve Noticed that Good Creative Leaders Do
- Get excited by their teams’ ideas
- Know when to do the dishes and when to invent a new kind of dishwasher
- Focus on what’s right about an idea instead of what’s wrong
- Guide rather than order
- Empathize with both their client and their audience
- Trust their instincts but stay flexible
- Make a room laugh
- Own shitty suggestions when they make them
- Understand the difference between making something better and playing with their food
- Improve work by reorienting it toward what’s awesome in the core of the idea
I have my M.A. in English. I’m also a Second City writing program grad, so I have a diploma to prove that I was willing to pay someone to tell me I was funny. And I’ve made stuff up at iO, UCB and on several deeply unsuccessful podcasts.
Want to take a look at my resume?