Monday, May 20, 2013

The bigger picture includes a dinosaur.

This week I took charge at home, I became strategic director of “Project Dinosaur”. I delegated each of the tasks to the appropriate staff members to ensure that the brief was fully met.

The team got to work, researching facts and figures from books and iPads. There was no T-Rex detail left uncovered before they took off to Officeworks and returned with poster paper and glue sticks, feathers and clag.

As official team leader and ‘owner’ of the end result of the project Popps got to make all the final decisions. Her handwriting became the font of choice.

Project Dinosaur now sits on a cabinet waiting for the day it is due at school.

It doesn’t look exactly like I thought it would.

Of course it doesn’t. I am not in Grade 1 and the creative ideas are not mine.

In a marketing capacity this happens all the time. You receive a brief, or more likely you chat with the people who need some assistance and write a brief up for yourself. You get brainstorming with ways to best meet the end goal, you write up timelines and in your head you start to picture how this will work. You make rules of what will and won’t be allowed, what will be acceptable.  You get excited about how good this campaign is going to be. You share the ideas with the marketing comms team if you have one and fine-tune everything. 

Then you present your project to the project owners and someone wants a change. The image apparently is just not quite right. They forgot to tell you that Hobnob Smith now wants the brochure to include a little bit of extra text, only half a page or so, can that just be squished in? Of course there is no money to print up an extra page, just make the font smaller, just push the heading over, just cut the lot and send them all to a website that we might (hopefully) have built soon.

Some days it feels like your client won’t be happy until you use comic sans.

Before you know it the project just must be printed, due dates can’t be pushed any further. Not always, but lots of times, you admit defeat. The marketing team roll their eyes at being beaten again by those higher up the corporate food chain and you all laugh that it doesn’t really matter, not like anyone is going to get hurt with poor marketing design.

This last month I have been working on some big projects with big budgets, big audience and multiple departments. The big picture is looking good, but it isn’t all to my liking.

And this is ok, because out of all my projects the only one that really truly matters, is Project Dinosaur.


  1. Oh, I used to get so irate, when I worked in government, about this sort of thing. Being the so called Project Manager, but in reality being the dogsbody, who put everybody else's ideas together into the final document. So frustrating. But you are right. If only I had a Project Dinosaur to give me perspective.

  2. Go project Dinosaur!

    Writing is a bit like that. You put together what you think is a fantastic piece and then the editor gets their teeth into and turns it into something unrecognisable! Not that I'm complaining at the moment...any published piece is welcome at this stage!

  3. THaT is a beautiful way To keep THings in perspeTiVe :) (my TH and V HaVe died and will only leT me Type in CapiTals. (opps add THe C Too!!!!)

    1. Caz, that is really funny, I couldn't work out what was with the letters...I think you should leave it that way, makes it more interesting!

  4. I find this really hard when working in teams (control freak alert!). Love Caz's comment too - we once had a broken 'E' key on our family computer and had to copy/paste every time we wanted an 'E'. ANNOYING!!

  5. Sounds great, the home dinosaur project, the work - tough, i kind of like working solo!!
    Now my lovely, you won the LEGO giveaway on my blog so if you could please email me . . . . . . your delivery address (street for courier) & i'll organise the delivery to you. Congratulations, love Posie

  6. You really make it appear really easy with your presentation however I in
    finding this topic to be really something that I believe I would by no means understand.
    It sort of feels too complex and extremely extensive for me.
    I'm taking a look forward for your subsequent submit, I will attempt to get the hang of it!

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  7. Got to love the project manager "unmanaging"

  8. Stupid frozen IPad. I say well done Hueys. But mostly good for you Popps! Pictures? Please? Thanks! Denyse

  9. love love love this. I have many project dinosaurs that I should really pay more attention to instead of getting worked up over the other crap. Thank you for helping me with perspective.

  10. I can so relate, Claire. This is just what I needed to read this week. x


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