• Charlotte Alford

Day 1: Shit, I've forgotten my glasses

Updated: Jul 23

""The best strategists are comfortable with ambiguity" Said... someone I can't remember"



There is nothing like driving over 400 miles in a bashed up Clio at 2am on a Saturday night, only to realise that you have left your glasses on your bathroom sink. Luckily, I only need them for reading, writing and general sight. Apparently "organised" needs to be removed from my CV.

I would really appreciate it if shops had a section called "Smart Casual". What is it? When did smart become too smart? What does casual even mean? Are Converse that have been slightly super glued back together deemed too casual? (Asking for a friend) Can I please get an Oxford dictionary definition with sample outfits? Also, is that an insight?

Apart from my slight visual impairment and constant need to run to the toilet every ten minutes to reapply deodorant, so I didn't stress sweat through my overly smart outfit, the first day of bootcamp went very well. The quote you see above was from Sara Tate's, CEO of TBWA, talk. A woman I instantly admired from the first use of a Schitts Creek gif. However, the minute I read this quote, I became slightly uneasy; Ambiguity is not something I have ever been overly comfortable with. Or maybe it has been. I'm not sure.

I have always liked facts. I have always liked knowing rules, if only to work out some loopholes. I struggled in school when I had to learn stuff for, what seemed like, the sake of it. I would constantly be saying "I don't get why though", "why do we need to know this?", "yes, but what's the point?". Shout out to Mr Whiteside who managed to drag me through Higher Maths. (Although, in my defence, I have never once used Sin, Tan or Cos.)

To me, strategy seems like the opposite of ambiguous. There is always a wealth of facts, figures and reasonings behind an ad. Lydia Jones, of St Lukes, spent the afternoon with us deconstructing ads. I'm not sure if it is a requirement for women in advertising to be intimidatingly impressive, but it seems to be an overarching theme. Although the focus was insights, for me, it seemed to reinforce this idea to me. Why did McDonalds show an ad with people of all different backgrounds eating in their restaurants? Because research showed that people were embarrassed to admit they ate in McDonalds, yet stats show that everyone does it. Simple. Logical.

Or I guess it isn't.

Why did Cadburys show an ad of a Gorilla passionately playing the drums to a classic Collins tune? No clue. No clue at all. But it worked. More than worked. So why the fuck does it matter?