I recently watched a fantastic Ted Talk by Navi Radjou which brought back a memory when I first started in ad agency world, which happened to be in Papua New Guinea. We were filming an influential sportsman for a television commercial. Weather was dry & hot at the time and for one of the scene’s we had to shoot, this guy wasn’t sweating enough to make the film director happy (visually the execution had to be just right)… Didn’t matter how much water I sprayed on the guy, it just kept evaporating off him… God know’s why, but I had a bottle of glycerine in my little production assistant tool kit, so I thought stuff it, lets rub this crap on the talent then spray water on him. Voila! He had the fake sweat – well executed enough to keep the film director happy… Yes happy days that was.
Key take aways from Navi’s talk that resonates with me as a Project Manager
1. Keep it simple, don’t recreate something that makes it more complex for the client (back then when you’re working for a film director, that was your client, keep them bloody happy)
2. Leverage off existing resources whenever you can
3. Think horizontally, keep an open mind, look at your options, think rationally first – don’t be reactive
As a project manager you wear many hats in the creative, marketing, advertising business, you just have to know the game, have some strategy and be a little creative not just make do, but to make better.