It's hard to decide which genius quote best represents the seemingly mundane decision I made to open up the NY Times Classifieds section on a Saturday afternoon, instead of the usual Sunday morning. At first I thought it might be Seth Godin's "If the way you see the world isn't helping you make the changes you seek to make, consider seeing the world differently," but then there's always, "We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them," famously attributed to that Einstein guy. Rich, from Haldane, was presumably right when he told me, "You'll never get that dream job, by answering an ad in the newspaper," but he never said I couldn't at least first find that job in the newspaper. Staring into the abyss of job listings for Advertising, Art Director, Creative Director, and Designer positions throughout the NY-Metropolitan area felt absolutely hopeless, to the point where the pages themselves began to blur together and I could no longer focus. It was time to turn the page, both literally and figuratively, and to look where anyone else, who might possibly have similar skills to mine, would not look.
As far as I know, the ad only ran that one time, in that one paper, in that one section: Marketing Positions. The listing's heading read, Creative Marketing Manager, and it stood out on the page like it was printed in red. The copy went on to say, "We're looking for a hand with big ideas.... An out-of-the-box thinker.... A creative with business acumen and CPG experience." Everything they were looking for was everything I could provide, and all I had to do was, as instructed, "Send your résumé to Human Resources c/o Firmenich Inc. in Princeton, NJ." Before ripping it out of the paper, enthusiastically and perhaps a tad prematurely over-confident, I ran to tell Chris I found THE job. They were looking for ME, and I not only knew how to get it, I knew how not to get it. The first thing I didn't do was reply to the ad. Knowing full well that my competition was still busy looking for their dream job under Advertising listings, it also seemed obvious to me that anyone with a traditional Marketing background would clearly apply for the position just as it asked - by mailing their credentials to a P.O. Box. The very box the ad was blatantly asking candidates to think out of.