Great planners are schizo

I admit, like many, to suffering from imposter syndrome at times (most of the time in my case). I never trained or worked 'properly' as a planner or strategist at an established creative agency, so I have this constant battle going on in my head, especially when the actual word 'strategy' is in my job title (!).

I have been lucky enough to work closely enough with some very talented people at our own agency, the Google Creative Lab and with strategists in agencies we sometimes partner with on projects. This has given me great insight into how to approach a brief and an audience, especially when combined with my own experience in the industry.

I do take comfort reading things which resonate with how I work, or at least want to work. The fact that 'content' is where I ply my trade gives me confidence though, something quite fun in reading articles or tweets from more established agency strategy people dissing it, or the way the word 'content' is used as this blanket term which covers such a wide range of executions. It makes me feel it's still an undiscovered little gem in the great scheme of marketing and brand strategies.

Anyway, coming back to the point about reading interesting things about what makes a good planner or strategist, I came across this great deck on SlideShare from Heidi Hackemer. It was good to see that many of the observations in the deck resonated with how I seem to work.

I really enjoyed the way the deck was presented, and the points made really spoke to the challenge I sometimes face when you do seem to suffer from spells of split personality on projects. It also highlighted something we are all guilty of which is pigeonholing. We all do it, but if you are what this deck says you are how on earth can people pigeonhole you?

Maybe that’s the point, and that’s the point of a strategist/planner - to be the guy or girl who can’t be pigeonholed, so they made a role which suits them down to the ground. They cover lots of different roles and look at things in lots of different ways. In doing so they are the ones who are able to make something make sense to everyone.

I know many roles I've done in my career never really grabbed me the way this does. It’s a role that is so varied in the way your mind has to work, it really suits a mind that is a little bit schizo.