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Pam Fujimoto on How Having Kids Makes You A Better Creative Director

How Having Kids Makes You A Better Creative Director

I never would have thought that making small versions of myself could actually help me in the already-demanding world of advertising. But then I had kids (two at once), and I started to learn how these two worlds aren’t always at odds, after all.

YOU’LL BECOME A MASTER OF TIME MANAGEMENT.
You know how they say if you want something done, give it to the busiest person in the room? That person probably has kids. If you want to see your kids, you’ll learn how to be a lot better about how you use your time. You’ll make decisions faster. You’ll sit around and bitch less.

YOU’RE A MOM, AND YOU UNDERSTAND OTHER MOMS.
And consumers are moms, and clients are moms, coworkers are moms, and people have moms, and it’s a mom-world, apparently.

IT’S YOUR JOB TO GET THE BEST OUT OF OTHERS.
It’s not all about you anymore. A CD’s job is to get the best out of creative people, to give them the tools, skills and encouragement to make great work. To give them structure, create opportunities and give them the behind-the-scenes support to help them grow. Sort of like at home.

CREATIVES ARE SORT OF LIKE CHILDREN.
I used to joke that I have toddlers at home and toddlers at work, but the ones at home are better behaved. Is this a broad, insulting generalization about creatives? Yes. But I include myself here when I say that creatives share some qualities with children, good and bad:

They love seeing what they can get away with.
They can be bribed with food.
They don’t always play well with others.
They need praise and encouragement.
They throw tantrums when they don’t get their way.
Their social skills are undeveloped.
They need deadlines or they won’t get anything done.
They are very entertained by poop jokes.

Learn to manage the tenuous world of child-adults and you can navigate any situation.

KIDS FORCE YOU TO TAKE A BREAK FROM YOUR CRAZY STRESSFUL JOB.
Having kids doesn’t give you less to do, obviously. But sometimes it makes you have to do something you wouldn’t otherwise, which is to take a healthy break from work and do something completely different. Being a parent means you don’t have the option of working 100 percent of the time. I schedule downtime. I look forward to weekends where we have nothing planned. Which is what you need when you’re a workaholic like me.

This week, we launched the Women in Advertising Scholarship at WONGDOODY. If you’re a woman with advertising aspirations and you’re ready to embrace a career that pushes you creatively and throws unforeseen challenges at you daily (much like raising kids), we want to help you get there. Apply here to be considered for a $5,000 tuition scholarship towards a creative career in advertising.

Pam Fujimoto
Executive Creative Director, Los Angeles

Tags:
thought leadership / pro bono