Bogusky, the Tim Burton of advertising, gives career advice


If you work in advertising you know Alex Bogusky as an icon, chief of Crispin Porter + Bogusky who does aggressive things with hamburgers. Bogusky dreams up campaigns with a disturbing psychological bent designed to yank the media. He has cool hair, a motorcycle with a rack for a mountain bike on the back, and draws the kind of love-hate idolatry that only an industry obsessed with eating its young can muster. If you see an ad that gives you a nightmare, but a warm fuzzy nightmare like you’re almost drowning and kind of enjoying it, CP+B probably did it. We’re reluctant to write about him for fear it looks like we’re kissing his ass.

Yet … Bogusky just posted the best career advice we’ve ever read. Check it here. A snippet:

Be honest. Be respectful. Be good. Set positive goals for yourself that can benefit lots of people. You’ll have lots of support because what’s good for you is good for them. Some people think they have to knock somebody else to get into a top spot. I’ve known people that thought they needed to knock me down to get up the ladder. It rarely works that way because there is infinite room for success and you’ll just get distracted from your true goals.

Don’t exaggerate. Don’t complicate. Very humble versions of success can lead to a wonderful life adventure. You don’t have to make it seem grand for it to become grand as it becomes reality.

Simplify. I think two sentences should be enough to hold your life’s professional dream.

It’s beautiful stuff. Via Darryl Ohrt.

4 thoughts on “Bogusky, the Tim Burton of advertising, gives career advice

  1. I was VERY impressed by Bogusky’s piece too.

    Never met the guy, but unlike many industry “celebs” he seems like he gets what his status brings to the party, but he doesn’t believe the hype. This piece is a good example: it’s not a “here’s why I’m a genius” piece, but rather something very user focused.

  2. After reading this piece on Alex Bugusky I checked out there site and was very disappointed.
    not with their site but who they do business with. very hard to take advice from someone who talks about honesty and helping people, when you sell Coke, Pizzas, Burgers and lots of other products that are proven to be so bad.

    if you are going to talk principals, at least have some yourself.

  3. Good synthesis. Alex is the real deal but his original post was loooong. He has always been consistent. No BS. Do what you believe. Don’t let other shit get in the way. Good stuff. In our business, not always easy, but always worth trying.

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