Celebrating work that works

Having just finished judging the North American Effies in New York, I can't help but feel inspired by the work, and confident in the future of our industry

The work always inspires. Every show I judge introduces me to new ideas that make me envious, and eager to do increasingly better work for my own clients.

But it's the discussions with other judges that inspire my confidence in the future of our industry. Packed with CMOs, CEOs, presidents and a wide range of other senior leaders across clients and agencies, every point of view is represented. Client. Planning. Creative. Media. And at the end of individually reviewing the work, we all discuss it.

Some things we were all in violent agreement on. Others brought passionate and opposing points of view. But all of it brought robust and intelligent conversation that added to the experience.

We don't all define "great creative" in the same way, but we do all recognize that good work should WORK for the brand. It should move the needle. The beauty of the Effies is that the effectiveness of the work outranks all other variables.

What was perhaps most interesting is that great creative work didn't always work the best. But the things that worked the best? They always had great creative. That's a brain twister to think about, but essentially great creative is always a critical component of great work, but not all on its own. Of course we have award shows for great creative work, too. And we could all point to the things we knew would win big there. But a bit more alchemy is involved in creating campaigns that also actually make a difference for a brand, and therein lies that beauty of the Effies.

Therein also lies my confidence in the future of our industry. Because every single one of the judges I met was invested in the process, and in recognizing only the work that really delivered results.  And they discussed it with such fire and passion, that you couldn't help but be a bit humbled by it all.