Industry Engagement Essay/Report

Over the weeks of this brief I have learnt many things from the speakers, some I have put into action a lot quicker and some I will put into action later. I feel that these industry talks have complemented my work and outlook towards our industry. It’s something when you constantly hear it from others but when it comes from someone who has experienced it and is in the industry that you aspire to be in, it begins to mean much more. In reflection to the speakers I was shocked at how ‘down to earth’ they all were and passionate towards the industry.

Something key I took away from Stephan Roux’s (Global Creative Director) talk was to remember the importance of networking and socialising with an array of people from different industries. In order to succeed we need to broaden our private and professional relations. I believe this crucial to the industry in which I want to be a part of. In reflection of this I am quite shy and some of our other briefs I feel has personally allowed me to shine and project my ideas as at the end of the day I don’t want to put my name to some rubbish old piece of work. Therefore, I took on board this advice and have started to put it into action.

Another example of some advice that I feel that I have started to put into action is when Cris Mascort (Design Director) highlighted the importance of leaving our own personal comfort zone and that the further you move away from it; the more creative you’ll get. Reflecting upon Cris’ presentation and advise I felt that I could strongly agree that I am ‘trapped’ in my comfort zone and what I believe looks good. That industry talk has inspired me to push myself which I believe I am slowly starting to do more and more within my work. In fact, Alex Towers also mentioned something very similar to Cris; you learn more from something you don’t particularly like and working on something you don’t know challenges you more.

Brian Sheppard’s industry talk about account management and being the jack of all trades linked similarly to Stephan’s talk which highlighted the importance of communication and connections. A key quote I took away from Brian’s presentation is ‘The most basic and powerful way to connect to another person is to listen’- Rachel Naomi Roman. Not that I never listened to anyone before but in reflection and contemplating about this I realised that without truly listening and responding you can never build knowledge, insights and just simply other stuff that you wouldn’t think of otherwise. Since then I actually had a conversation with an old lady at the train station talking about the billboards and how she wishes they were a lot more fun and playful since she waits 43 minuets for her train in the morning. She said ‘I’d rather stare at pigeon shit than them old blocks’. Just gaining this simple insight through a conversation I started to creatively think of a solution as I myself also experience the same when waiting for my train. This proves that since I took on this advice I have gained an insight which I wouldn’t have probably realised on my own without talking to anyone else. This links to somethings that another speaker said, Alex Towers, sometimes it’s about seeing what’s in front of you. Also, there are opportunities just go out and find them.

Not specifically advice but just an outlook and attitude that inspired me was Dave Birss’ outlook and knowledge on the industry is defiantly something to be admired, his way of presenting himself and the presence he has in the room was inspiring to listen to and watch. The attitude he has towards working and the idea process he has is influential. I have started to attempt to put the advice into practise, especially when looking for inspiration for work as he made me realise if everyone has the same input they will all have the same output. I have started to try and find active inspiration and look at things with a different perspective.

Dave Birss presentation of himself and his presence in the room is similar to what Rangatang’s advice was of when you present yourself just go for it, you’re far more than just a name. Their thinking and outlook on the industry to me felt the same they were both a bit quirky but if everyone was like a robot there wouldn’t be any creativity like Alex’s opinion ‘Algorithms work up to a point therefore there’s still room for creativity’

Out of all of the industry talks and what I have taken away from them nothing beat just listening to some funky and quirky ex-students from Ravensbourne (Rangatang) and their advice because they have literally ‘been in our shoes’ and only just a year ago. For me this made them more relatable. Their basic advice of just ‘get stuck in, you don’t know the best place until you find the worst place’ basically sums up near enough all of the industry talks altogether.

I feel that not only has my work benefited from these industry talks but I feel like I have as a person. I am slowly starting to get more and more confident and build connections. Within my second year I aim to have completed a range of live briefs especially those out of my comfort zone to challenge myself and also complete some internships as Stephan Roux and most of the others stated ‘you often have to take any job you can find, even if it’s not what you want. Use it to gain experience’. Stay positive, passionate and motivated and you will achieve what you want. During next year I want to collaborate more and make more connections with students on other courses, to build my network as the saying goes, it’s not what you know but who you know.

Industry Engagement Report


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