Why The Ad Industry Is In A Talent Rut And A Prescription For Change | Co.Create: Creativity \ Culture \ Commerce

The advertising industry is in transition. This is the most auspicious period in recent history, yet it’s also the most disruptive. An agency either has the right 21st-century talent, or it doesn’t. Employees either understand digital, or they are actively pretending that they do. Agency talent stays far too long or turns over within the predictable 18-month cycle.

The current transitional time has shifted the spotlight from what we know to what we need to know. Tinkering and agile processes are valued. The prototype gets more attention than the brief. Big-idea people are no longer the singular hot commodity. Employees who understand platforms, media, technology, trends, data, and “how to generate and make ideas” are the new model for talent.

It’s no longer just about great ideas. It’s about great ideas that get made.

Understanding technology, embracing new talent, making things and not just imagining things, evolving traditional agency practices, and leveraging new ways of working are redefining 21st-century agencies’ competitive advantage. Yet many agencies remain stuck facing big questions: Where do you start? Where do you invest? The industry struggles to evolve, react, and fully embrace the new rules for retaining (and attracting) the brightest minds.

On the subject of “Gen Flux,” a recent Fast Company article reminds us that “The vast bulk of our institutions–educational, corporate, political–-are not built for flux. Few traditional career tactics train us for an era where the most important skill is the ability to acquire new skills.” Or as Alvin Toffler says, “The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.”[ii] For many years, agencies have under-invested in reeducation in the workplace.

We expect talent to leave, and that’s okay. But is it really?

via Why The Ad Industry Is In A Talent Rut And A Prescription For Change | Co.Create: Creativity \ Culture \ Commerce.

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