As a small agency, moving from one year to the next happens as fluidly as the change of seasons. You realize it once you’re in the thick of it. It’s another year. We made it. Let’s keep going. Until you hit ten. Suddenly you’re struck by the passage of time. You’re past the single digits. Now you’re binary. Damn! There’s a one and zero with you.
Our origin story was born of the fallout of the financial crisis. As 2008 was going down the drain, I found myself out of a job and wondering what to do next. Looking around I realized head hunters were losing their jobs. Clearly it was worse than I thought.
Nothing stirred in Jan and Feb. By March there were freelance offers. Agencies had a new game plan. Why hire back when you can get people to work contract. It was easy to get hired guns for a few days or a few months. And there were enough ex-agency people willing to take anything.
Three of us who used to work together often met up for coffee and to exchange notes about which agency had a gig, and those conversations almost always ended with “let’s open our own shop”. One spring day, we decided, let’s do it. And let’s be really unpretentious and not name ourselves some pithy hipster name with a techie or digital edge. How simplistic or minimalistic can a name be? It’s just us after all.
Us. That’s it. Without a client, a wing, or a prayer, we left the coffee shop elated. A few weeks in, one of the trio decided to pull out for personal reasons. In the meantime, another old colleague wanted in. And there we were. Back as a trinity. Until a few months later one more dropped out. For personal health reasons. And then, there were two.
Where do we go from here? There’s only so much coffee and beer you can drink and dream up witty barber shop or condom creative for award entries. When creatives start an agency, everyone around chuckles into their chins or gins knowing this really isn’t going anywhere. But creatives are typically delusional. We’re trained on that. Why else would we come up with great ideas repeatedly so that they get transformed into drivel with every passing meeting? The ability to walk into a blizzard with the assurance that there’s sunshine after this snowdrift is the only thing that keeps us going. A bit of scotch helps.
And here we are, retelling stories that are ten years old. The only reason we’re still standing is because there were, and still are, some people who took a chance on us who were happy to show up, full of enthusiasm even if it was for an annual report cover that no one bothered to pause and look at. But we gave it our all. We still do. We’re delusional that way.
But really, this longwinded trip down memory lane is just our way of saying thank you. To all of you, who have helped us get here. Thank you. And we think, the best years have just begun ;)