Dear Lisa Greenberg,
Thank you for taking the time to check this out. I know you're busy, but I wanted to do something that would show you what a great asset I would be to your team. Here's a little bit more about myself, so you can understand why you should hire me. I've made a list of 50 reasons why I should work at Leo Burnett:
- I am incredibly passionate about my craft.
- I was born to be creative. I knew I wanted to be a creative since I was a child. I used to sketch the characters from the Archie comics and post them around my room. I had stacks and stacks of them. I would restart and try again to make them look the best they could possibly be. From there I started making little comic strips. Drawing comics was one of my favourite past times as a child.
Hitting a roadblock makes me work harder. I'll be up all hours of the night trying to work through an idea I have in my head. Then I'll take a break but come right back to it. I try to look at the problem differently and find new perspectives. I don't give up and that is why I wrote you this list.
I am so eager to learn as much as I can. For my entire career I’ve been searching for mentors and people that will help me evolve. Learning can be scary as you must step out of your comfort zone, but that is something I fully embrace. For example, I’m currently trying to learn hand lettering. I’m completely out of my element, but it doesn't stop me from practicing and trying to be better.
I will go to great lengths to make sure my work gets made. Trust me. I once talked an older gentleman, at a shop on Queen Street, into lending me his opaque steel blender for an online video. I also spent an evening driving around the GTA looking for different paper towel samples to make sure I had the right one for a shoot. I went to over a hundred different restaurants, gas stations, stores, bathrooms; you name it, gathering samples.
I love to create and build things. As a child I had a huge LEGO collection. I was constantly building things and rebuilding them again and again to see what I could create. The possibilities were endless.
I complete all my projects from start to finish. I love the process and make it my own. I come up with the idea, build the design and look, and then retouch, typeset, and make the final layouts. I am in love with my craft.
I'm a jack-of-all-trades. First and foremost I'm an Art Director, but when I need to I will be an account person, project manager, writer, producer, etc. Whatever it takes!
I'm a type fiend. A lot of my past time is spent looking at typography and different ways to create type. It's one of my favourite things to do and it's what keeps me inspired.
I know the difference between centred and visually centred.
Design is my foundation. I base everything on this. I love graphic design so deeply and it exists in everything I do. Outside of advertising, I have my own clients and a few of which I’ve created their brand identity. This is one of my favourite aspects of design as you get to create a unique visual language. I try to bring design into advertising every chance I get. That is why I'm so thrilled you have a real design department at Leo. You're the only agency that has this figured out!
Advertising has always had my heart. When I was studying at YSDN, a lot of my classmates were interning at Design shops but I chose the advertising route. I interned for 6 weeks in my 3rd year with Israel Diaz at Y&R. I learned so much in those 6 weeks that I knew advertising was my home.
My mind works in a very logical way. I try to rationalize things and put myself in the other person’s perspective. I want to see things from every angle and understand where they’re coming from. I think in a very organic manner and that’s what gets to those great ideas.
I’ve always been coming up with ideas. When I was younger I was quite the prankster. April Fool’s was one of my favourite days. I would spend weeks coming up with different jokes for my family and friends. Every year was different and a challenge I looked forward to.
The best work creates disruption. Creative that affects mediums is my favourite kind. That is why I loved working on Honda, we were always figuring out ways to play with the Out Of Home board itself and use it as the message.
I love watching human interaction with a piece of creative. That moment of realization when the ad goes somewhere they didn’t expect. When everything clicks into place. That’s my favourite part!
Strategy plays a leading role in my process. I love to chat with planners and pick their brains. The idea should live and breathe in the strategy. The relationship between planner and creative is an important one.
Every brief is an opportunity. Some projects can be less fun than others, but I believe every brief has a chance to be something great. Sometimes a client asks for a banner ad but they really need something else, such as an online video. This solution would answer their business problem. There’s always an opportunity, you just have to find it.
I've been told I have a knack for selling big ideas. Pitching a concept can make or break great creative. If you’re passionate about your idea and you believe in it, others will too.
My career and portfolio are very important to me. I will always strive to make my work be the best it can be.
I do things outside of advertising. My favourite past times are Yoga and Boxing, my version of yin and yang. These two opposing interests help me fuel the energy that keeps me going.
I am passionate about making the world a better place. I love advertising that can make a difference in world issues and get steps closer to eradicating them. That's why my TV spot "The One That Got Away" was very important to me, as it openly discussed the social issue of domestic violence. When this project was completed, I was more interested in how many women it helped vs. how many awards we won. If we can change the way people think about social issues then we can change the world.
Increasing the percentage of women in advertising is very important to me. At "See It. Be It." you mentioned that you encourage your female staff to find their voice and ask for the things they want. That’s when I knew you were the right person to work for.
I'm not afraid to take on many challenges. My first TV spot was "The One That Got Away". When we shot the spot, my Writer and my Creative Director were away. I was alone for the casting call and wardrobe, and had minimal supervision on the shoot day and the final edit. It was my first shoot, done all on my own. It was very scary but so very exciting. I formed a great relationship with Yael Staav and I didn't shy away from the challenge. I was very happy with the outcome.
I submerge myself fully into my projects. When I worked on my Upper Canada Mall branding project, we went to the mall and interviewed mall employees and shoppers. I like to put myself in the shoes of the target audience and live their experience. The best way to solve business problems is to understand the business and experience it as fully as possible.
"Strength in perseverance". That phrase really rings true with me. My last boss used to tell students the story of how I got my job. I knew I had to work for him, so I would text him every few weeks for almost a year reaching out to see if there was any opening at the agency. Until one day, it paid off.
I worked for Dave Crichton. He really liked me and believed in my work. That's one of my accomplishments.
I’m not afraid to fail. Getting to the great ideas can come with a failure. It’s a part of the process and it’s not something I shy away from. Trying something different involves risk and potentially failure. Without taking risks there are no great ideas. Failing makes you better. It’s progress. I think you learn a lot from the ideas that don’t work. But that doesn’t stop me from getting back up and making it better.
I'm incredibly curious. The world is a very interesting place, there’s so much to learn and so much to see. I'm constantly trying new things, talking to new people and striking up conversations about topics that interest me. People watching is one of my favourite past times. You can learn so much from people.
You and your team inspire me. http://www.leoburnettdesign.ca/ is my main source of design inspiration. Seriously, this is the first resource I check out when I'm stuck and need a hit of inspiration.
I knew I belonged at Leo since the beginning of my career. When I first met Anthony I was two years into advertising. I was so nervous to meet him because he was number one in Toronto. I was pleasantly surprised to discover he is the most humble person I've ever met in the business. This was so shocking to me and yet so amazing. I've always looked up to him and he speaks very highly of his team. It was so refreshing. He gave me tips on how to make my portfolio better and then sat on the phone with me and walked me through the changes. I admire how deeply he cares about sharing his passion. The world needs more Anthonys.
I trust my gut. This is what tells me if I’m on the right path. So far it hasn’t failed me and has even saved me from some potentially terrible situations.
I know my worth. Isn’t that half the battle? Knowing that you can do it and believing in yourself to get there. This makes us stronger and builds us up to doing great things.
I’m a little “ragey” too. I loved at "See It. Be It" when you said you were known as being "ragey". That's a phrase I've been called a few times, and I understand passion and where that comes from.
I speak my mind. My beliefs and values are very important to me as a creative and as an individual. I stand tall for what I believe in. My integrity is everything to me.
I love when people are direct. I’m part Italian and they are very direct people. That's how I was raised. I would rather hear exactly what you’re thinking and what’s working or not, in order to get work to the best place it can be.
I’m humble. I’ll never lose this quality because it’s who I am. That’s why I related so much to Anthony.
I’m open-minded. I’m not one to shy away from feedback or criticism. I love showing my work to people I trust to get their opinion. I’m always working to make things better.
Collaboration is key. I’ve learned how to work with account people, not for them or against them. They must be excited about the project, and the creative that's being put forward. They really have to believe in it. The account team has to live and breathe creative, as that’s how the good work gets sold. It’s better to work with them than against them.
I’m a good listener. Actively listening is much harder than it looks. It's so important to hear and take the time to understand people when they tell you what they're looking for. It's such a big part of the process.
I’m hungry. I want to lay down roots and grow at a place just like Leo. I want to make great work. It’s who I am.
I’m as persistent as they come. Ask Fernando he was getting tired of my emails (just kidding Fernando is great).
I’m hardworking. When I was a Designer I knew I wanted to be an Art Director so I went to great lengths to make that happen. To make this transition, I spent nights making spec ads to prove I could think on the scale of big ideas. And here I am, many ads later.
I’m patient. I know good things take time and I wait for them. I’m also patient with people, as it can take time for them to see things from my perspective.
I find opportunities. If there’s something I want to do, and the agency isn’t doing it or doesn’t have that client, I go out and find it. “The One That Got Away” was one of my first tasks at my last job. There was no brief. I saw an opportunity and we found a way. There’s always a way.
I am devoted. At my first job, as a junior creative I worked on every single pitch the agency had. I kept requesting to be on pitches because I knew there was so much to learn about advertising, and I was genuinely excited to come up with ideas. Even if I didn't have bandwidth I stayed after hours because I wanted to learn as much as I could. Ask Kerry Reynolds, he saw me there day and night!
I am dependable. When the going gets tough I'm in it for the long haul. Even as a freelancer I've always made myself available and I'm always there to see things through. I am someone you can count on.
I'm adaptable. As a full-timer and freelancer I've gotten the opportunity to work with many different writers, account people and creative directors, and I've always fit in with the culture. Working relationships are very important to me, so I always make it a priority to get to know the people around me. These are the people that will build you up and help your agency succeed. One Team, One Dream.
I've basically met all of the Leo team. I'm almost part of the family so we should really make it official!
I’m a great Art Director. I’m really good at what I do and I love doing it. My portfolio speaks for itself and I know I would excel on your team. I put my best foot forward every day and I know the work we would make together would be amazing.
Thank you for taking the time to read this list and I hope it helps you understand why I belong at your agency. I’m open to both full-time or freelance.
I’d love to hear your thoughts so please click here to email me back.
Looking forward to hearing from you!