AdLand Suit is Dan Shute, a Board Account Director at Delaney Lund Knox Warren, a top ten London Advertising Agency. This is where I write about the life of a Suit - which can include pretty much anything. Delaney's didn't know I was doing this, but they do now. They still don't agree with everything I say though. They'd also probably rather I swore less.

Monday, 28 September 2009

An Atypically Personal Post

Last night, as those who have the dubious pleasure of following me on Twitter will know, was spent at a University reunion – or, rather, a gaudy, as my esteemed establishment of learning terms it. And, as is my wont, it got me thinking.

I was at University with some really quite fantastic people. I am in touch with several of them, but not as many as I’d like. And advertising has played a part in that. One of the side effects of working in Adland is the number of brilliant people you meet – and one of the sad facts of life is that there’s only room for so many folk, and working in advertising has meant that more of those slots are filled with people I met in my 20s than is the case for friends who work in other, more lucrative, but less fun industries.

As life progresses, you have to make decisions – sometimes conscious, sometimes inadvertent – about who gets to remain a part of it. And if life does come with regrets, then that, for me, is probably the area in which most of them lie. So if you are a student, be aware that choosing to work in advertising will mean that you lose touch with a lot of the people that you currently feel are indispensable. And that sometimes it’s only human to regret that.


John said...

I'm a graduate who's just started in advertising in a city away from my hometown.

And your final comment is so incredibly, inevitably true.

We don't lead normal lives, so while everyone else from uni does their thing, we're going completely different directions. It's a hard thing to accept.
But we do need to hang on to the ones that matter.

andrea said...

I feel bad because I've probably ignored a lot of people but then again my circumstances weren't as typical either. While in uni some pretty bad things have happened in my life and I didn't expect anyone to be sympathetic, nor could I get myself to go out as others expected me to.

Choosing to work was also a factor affecting my socialising but the few of those who did stick with me were awesome people indeed.

But I think generations have changed - most of the people in uni are great to drink & have fun with but that's where the commonalities between us end :(

neilperkin said...

Interesting though how we can stay connected to people through social networks (particularly our less active ones like Linked In) where once we would have lost those connections forever.

shib said...

Good post AdLand! I'm with John on this one, I'm finding it already, you speak less to your close friends who are off to be accountants and lawyers and end up submerged in the adland world.

Valid point by Neil though, it's good to know that a lot of these friends may only be a click away on various social networks, something that we take for granted!

AdLand Suit said...

The social network point is an interesting one - personally, I'm not convinced by their value in this specific area. I think they provide an awesome means of sharing news with people, and of keeping people up to date with what's going on in your life, but that's not the same as staying in touch. For me, the risk of social networks is that they give the illusion of staying in touch without any of the effort - and as such can leave you less likely to make the effort with people you otherwise might. Ho-hum.

And, Andrea... What to say other than that I hope you're ok, and that the bad things have got better. (As an interesting, and slightly facetious aside, the guy who still runs my college bar told me on Saturday night that takings have never been as high as they were when we were freshers. And the youth of today think they can drink...)

Daan Jansonius said...

Interesting post. I've always been a bit of a nomad so never considered it might be the current industry that's causing me to see less of my old friends. Although it has gotten worse now I have joined Ad Land full time.

And good point regarding social networks.

I've noticed recently I still keep track of what people are doing on Facebook for example (it's not stalking!), but share very little on there myself. Nor do I post on walls, send messages etc. In that sense you are probably right in saying it gives a falls sense of stayin in touch.

And well done on the drinking - I'm sure you'd do Don Draper proud! ;)