Rut Busters: What do you see?

By Dave Huerta, VP/Associate Creative Director @ NYCA

In every agency it’s the same story. Buildings filled with problem solvers doing their best to meet shrinking timelines, while providing their clients with their freshest thinking.

As you can guess, shrunken timelines and fresh thinking don’t get along great. Let’s just say they’re not friends. They don’t even like being in the same neighborhood. And rarely will anything good come about when they’re forced in the same room, let alone brief.

So being the super smart and evolved communicators we are, we naturally kick into high gear. Faced with no time, our brains do a quick search of all the solutions that have worked in the past and finds the one that best matches the problem in front of us. (Probably has to do with some left over fight or flight issues.)

Anyway, it’s awesome for meeting a timeline. But not awesome for creating unique and effective work that addresses a unique communication challenge. It leads to patterns and ruts where you end up with the same solutions to completely different problems.

At NYCA we don’t like ruts. They’re not good for agencies or clients, so we’re doing an internal series of rut busters in the way of visual teasers, thought provoking questions and brain contorting challenges. Just different ways to keep our minds open and seeing problems from unexpected directions so we can continue to provide our clients with unique and effective grow! work.

And it’s not just for the creative department. The Rut Busters are for every NYCAer whether you’re the President, in accounting or part of the cleaning crew.

Who knows, it just might reveal which senior account person will be our next jr. art director or writer.

Here’s the first rut buster and what NYCAers’ saw.

What do you see?

3 Responses to Rut Busters: What do you see?

  1. efficientcom says:

    “heartbeat” is my favorite answer.

  2. Actually, I respectfully offer different interpretation with regard to your main point: In the 1st Gulf War, there was a big problem with logistics & supply – getting soldiers and equipment and supplies working in unison. The top logistics general had so many incoming requests, he created a system where any request had to be submitted to him on a 3×5 inch note card, thereby forcing all to be excruciatingly brief. With so little room to write, the ideas were crystallised to the essentials. To the surprise of many, the crystallisation process forced clear, concise thinking. (Moving Mountains: Lessons in Leadership and Logistics from the Gulf War by William G. Pagonis and Jeffrey L. Cruikshank)

    Je n’ai fait celle-ci plus longue que parce que je n’ai pas eu le loisir de la faire plus courte.- Blaise Pascal (I would have written a shorter letter, but I did not have the time. Source: Provincial Letters: Letter XVI (English Translation))

    kind regards,


  3. I’d like to offer this video on this subject taken from a Pixar leader

    I love NYCA Insight..


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