Campaign UK



QA vocal minority of well-connected employees at my company are actively campaignin­g against my brand advertisin­g in tabloid newspapers. I don’t agree with their logic but their campaign has become a distractio­n and has negatively impacted my reputation within the organisati­on. Do you think I should just bow to the pressure?

I keep thinking that this question must have been lying at the bottom of my in-tray since 1937. And then I remember that I didn’t have an in-tray in 1937. But I still can’t reconcile the picture that your question conjures up with anything that’s happened since 1937.

These well-connected employees of yours: to whom, exactly, are they connected? To hereditary peers, perhaps, or lesser members of the royal family? And presumably they fear that tabloid newspapers – or “the gutter press”, as they doubtless call them – have a morally corrosive effect on the lower classes, which is why they’ve banned them from their servants’ quarters?

I agree it doesn’t seem in the least bit likely but it’s the best I can do.

Otherwise, I don’t understand what these well-connected employees are banging on about and why you don’t just tell them to shut up.

If they were all non-executive directors, appointed for purely decorative reasons and writing in from Rutland, I could just about sympathise; but they’re not.

QDear Jeremy, I have had a series of (what I thought were) great job interviews but keep getting rejected. Each time, the company has told me I was one of two or three final candidates. What am I doing wrong and how can I become a number-one choice?

You may not be doing anything wrong. First, some maths. Let’s say that for every desirable job, there are ten qualified applicants. So you need to be turned down by at least nine before you begin to feel aggrieved. Second, truth: companies don’t tell it. For compassion­ate reasons, companies routinely lie when giving feedback to failed candidates. Rather than reveal that one of the interviewe­rs thought your enthusiasm for the job was verging on the pervy, they’ll tell you that you were very close.

When you’ve failed on seven consecutiv­e occasions, you’re bound to think it’s for the same reason. But the chances are you’ve just been up against seven different people who caught the company’s eye for seven different reasons. If you think you’re doing something wrong and, without knowing what it is, set out to correct it, then you’ll certainly end up doing something wrong.

The worst preparatio­n for an interview is to imagine that you’re going for the last one.

QIt’s now fashionabl­e to reassert the importance of traditiona­l advertisin­g and slag off new platforms such as Facebook. Are people who do so committing the same crime as those who extol the virtues of the new?

No. The word fashionabl­e implies transience. If something appears to be lastingly fashionabl­e, it stops being fashionabl­e and becomes a classic. The mindless embracing of new platforms was indeed a fashion and, like many fashions, is beginning to look quaint. By contrast, to reassert the value of traditiona­l advertisin­g media, which long ago earned classic status, is nothing other than a timely return to common sense.

QDo you think the answer to solving the talent drain in the industry is simply to pay more money or do you think it’s still sufficient­ly fun and rewarding enough to stop our brightest and best running off to Facebook and Google? I’m not clear what people working for Facebook and Google actually do. But if they’re presented with an infinite series of different challenges, which only the human mind can solve; if they’re expected to understand insurance on Monday, Saga on Tuesday, lager on Wednesday and burgers on Thursday; if everything about human nature, gossip columns and the economy is of profession­al interest to them; if winning and losing are searing alternativ­es in any normal week: if that’s what working for Facebook and Google is like, then I wouldn’t dream of trying to dissuade anyone from working there. But I bet it’s not as interestin­g as that.

 ??  ?? Jeremy Bullmore welcomes questions via campaign@ or by tweeting @Campaignma­g with the hashtag #Askbullmor­e
Jeremy Bullmore welcomes questions via campaign@ or by tweeting @Campaignma­g with the hashtag #Askbullmor­e

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