Posts Tagged ‘Workhop’

the real work of brands

November 14, 2009


Tomorrow I lead 25 TV executives through an all-day brand workshop in Dubai  at the DMI studios.

We’ve never met, but already I know this: they’re managers, directors, art directors, and producers. They’re young, creative, opinionated, curious, and ambitious.They’ll be shy at first, and open up as the day goes on. We will laugh and disagree, we may have misunderstandings.

By the end of the day, they will amaze me.

We spend a lot of time preparing our workshops:  pulling examples, creating exercises, and laying out the concepts that make brands work.

But the miracle always happens in the team work. When the language of the day isn’t job titles or meetings. It’s ideas. When people jump in and try things out. When they don’t fear failure.

What will amaze me tomorrow? I can’t wait to find out.

What’s your best workshop experience?


mini miracles

September 2, 2009


Discard beverage. Take off shoes. Slide computer through xray. Purchase identical beverage a moment later. Board plane. Squeeze computer bag and body into seat. Endure not-so-solitary confinement for hours marked by B movies, salty snacks, and a shortage of fresh air.

By the time custom forms make the rounds and the landing gear has settled, you are under a spell, some metaphysical abracadabra. Poof, a new world is outside the terminal doors: Singapore, Mumbai or Kuala Lumpur.


So many fresh ideas on the other side of the puddle: a different way to deliver lunch, a solution to collecting trash, or package milk. Sometimes dull becomes delightful.

Consider the mind-blowing technique of Keith Loutit, an Australian film maker.

Loutit shoots real life and turns it into miniature. TV1 in Australia was sharp enough to hire him for their image campaign. Magic.

walk in workshop

May 29, 2009

They warned us that the Indians run late. Our 9a session started closer to 9:15. No worries I got to finish my tea. Folks were still trickling in when we received the cue to start.

LB up first. Good morning and thank you. We are Tooth+Nail. We are not dentists. I thought it was a stellar beginning. My turn next and the topic was creative briefs and the key message. I show an ad, you tell me what the key message is. Interactive, engaging and a chance to share great work from around the globe. 



We were about to show our kick-off spot, from Heineken, a funny crowd warming video. Then the power went out. When it resumed our computer was in a coma. I was feeling catatonic as well. LB didn’t miss a beat. She informed the crowd that while the computer was rebooting we would act out the spot.

LB opened imaginary closet doors and shrieked with delight at shelves of imaginary shoes. I  jumped up and down pretending to see shelves of beer. The audience loved it.

The attendees from the morning session returned for the afternoon session; we passed the workshop litmus test. In fact, they had to add more chairs.

Three and a half hours later we ended the workshop by playing the spot we intended to open with. The audience shrieked. You’d almost think they were in a closet sized refrigerator filled with beer.