A Rule in Youth Baseball I Incorporate Into My Advertising Life.

Friday February 20, 2015

written by Nick Pipitone

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Here’s the understatement of the century: as ad professionals we tend to get emotionally wrapped up in our work.

Ya think?

A majority of the people I work with on a daily basis are intensely passionate people who love what they do. We’re always thinking about the work in between the other things life calls us to do. But the desire to create great work is pretty much something you never turn off.

The emotion is a double-edged sword, fueling nearly equal amounts of positive excitement and gut wrenching doubt.

Because of this emotion we, on occasion, tend to fly off the handle when someone criticizes the work. There are no shortages of opinions when it comes to advertising. And, inevitably a squeaky wheel is going to say something you are not going to like or agree with. It could be your creative partner. A planner. Account exec. Client. Possibly even your Mom.

It is in these moments when we are in our most irrational state. While some of us in advertising fail to recognize this, (and thus fly off the handle) my son’s baseball team has a way of handling emotional situations that could make a lot of sense for all of us.

It is written in the rules of the 6th Tool Baseball School that, if the coach makes a decision you take issue with involving your child, you must wait 24 hours to contact the coach about it. They won’t even listen to you if you try to talk to them before the 24 hours is up.

The emotions you feel in anything involving your kids are some of the most intense emotions you will ever feel. Which is why you need time to take a deep breath and calm down before you act. Still, when you see your kid get taken out of a game or get admonished for making a dumb play, you want to defend them on the spot.

With the same intensity, we ad people want to defend the work on the spot too. Most times, it doesn’t pay off.

Wait the 24 hours, talk about it, and let cooler, and more rational heads prevail. You will come at the problem with a clearer head, and likely get the outcome you want, without losing your mind.

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