Control Freaks

Years ago, as a student at the VCU Adcenter, I remember Jelly Helm admitting to our class that he was a little bit of a control freak. He said that if you asked the rest of the faculty, you'd find most of them were control freaks, too.

But the thing that's really stuck with me, is that Jelly believed that having control-freak tendencies was probably a big contribution to his success.

"Control freak" has negative connotations. Who wants to work for a tyrant and an ego-maniac, right? The thing is, I don't think Jelly is a tyrant or an ego-maniac. He just really cares about his work. He doesn't stop at "good enough."

Embrace your inner-control freak. Nourish it. You can be a control freak and still be nice and humble and respectful and open to other opinions.

But if you're an art director, have an opinion about the copy your partner's writing. If you're a writer, weigh in on your partner's layout and typeface. It's you're ad, too. Because when you show your book around and have to explain, "Yeah, my partner wanted it this way, but I didn't really agree," what you're really saying is, "I put this in my book, but I don't like it, so there's really no reason you should either."