I met Colleen DeCourcy at a conference in New York. She gave one of the best presentations about how to think about digital and I had to talk with her afterwards. It was 2009, I think, so everyone was really trying to figure things out. She had some great thoughts and I've always tried to keep up with her thinking as much as one can.
Here's a great Q&A that's chalked full of great advice for people working in the industry, or wanting to one day.
What is the biggest obstacle you’ve overcome, as it relates to your industry?
Creative people really love comfort and repetition. We have this conceit that we don't, that we’re free spirits. But most truly creative people have managed to find a way to push everything else away, to make space for their own ideas. It’s a process of elimination and discipline. Creative people are really very set in their ways. It’s called “being sure.” It’s necessary.
This whole idea of perpetual change and discomfort, which Wieden has always embraced, is at it’s core a kind of creative trauma. So, the chaotic, changing world shouldn’t be taking us off our game, but it really makes things hard.
What motivates you?
Fear. A Fear that I would be invisible and that I would start and finish my life and no one would ever know. It's not ego. It's not that I have to be important. It's that I have to matter. When you combine that with a lot of curiosity and the curse of being easily distracted, it’s a bit of a shit show really. Still, it keeps me going. It makes me work hard.
What advice would you give to your daughter at the start of her career?
Get up everyday and commit yourself to something that doesn’t feel like it’s taking more than it gives.