Alex Bogusky, I think I love you.

July 1, 2010

By Michael Mark, Creative Director/CEO @ NYCA

(I wrote this after seeing Alex speak last year, but was told by smart people at my agency not to post it – “too weird.”  On the news that Alex’s doing something new, I wanted to thank him, encourage him and hopefully not scare him.)

Alex Bogusky, I love you.

Here’s why:

Your delusional positivity philosophy.

Your constant poking at everything, including your agency, your clients, the industry, the work, the media, the culture, your hair.

Your biceps.

Your comfortableness with yourself.

Your response to my email. When I wrote, “Thanks, you did some good for our agency group,” you replied: “Love it. Have a great three days.”

Now let me parse this dense, complicated poetry.

First: “Love it.” Love: Pure joy, exuberance, connection. “It” is more subtle, rich and could refer to the time you spent with the group because we were good listeners, intelligent and appreciative. “It” could be the love for what you are doing now, or more generally, a love of life!

Following this grand emotional expression your words snap into reality, connectivity: “Have a great 3 days” – the 3 days! You tuned into my immediate situation, this specific reference to the time I was scheduled to be in Aspen. You could have jotted off a generic “thanks, enjoyed it” but you connected with my life. And right there – the combination of the emotional with the pointed, every day made a deeper, personal connection.

Alex, you are a great communicator: All with 7 words. Elegant, mystical.

I love that about you.

And also how you live in the moment so you bring those around you in it. And we’re all there in it, vivid and electric with possibilities.

As the industry trades write our obituaries you innocently, knowingly, amusedly ride your bike by the graveyard, wondering why the gloom when there’s so much fun stuff to do.

So it seems, I really don’t know you.

I just love you.


The hypocrisy of growth

June 18, 2009

By Michelle Edelman, President @NYCA 

I heard Alex Bogusky speak this week at the AMIN network conference. Once you get over the fame and the looks, he really is just a sweet and well-spoken, kick-ass creative guy. 

He said he joined Crispin Porter back when it was 16 people and he was a senior Art Director. It’s now 1,000 people. 

He said he loves when Crispin ‘gets small.’ When the agency opened up a location in Boulder, the plan was to take 50 people. This was energizing to him. CP+B has just acquired a small digital shop in the UK which is also 50 people. The nimble entrepreneurism and we-can-do-anything optimism of a small team is what he craves.

growthThat’s what we have at NYCA and it’s so funny – we seek growth. We long for new challenges and to explore the horizon we know is out there for us. 

The irony is that at a certain size, we will no longer be small. And we love the feeling that small brings. Our teams are like little schools of fish, supporting each other and swimming to protect each other and the marvelous ideas that get pinned up every day. 

It’s an unsolvable puzzle: how to get bigger without giving up our smallness. Let me know if you solve it and we’ll write a book.