While I sympathise with most of the contributors to your feature The media jobs from hell (page 32, 28 September), I take exception to the assumption that any job involving “the North”, “business to business” or “niche trade” is from hell.
The most rewarding and lucrative experiences of my sales career have come from selling space in, among others, the Norwich Advertiser, Anglia Farmer and the Country Gentleman’s Association magazine.
It would be impossible to be an expert in all of the subjects covered in the specialist media, but any salesperson worth their salt should have the skills to develop an understanding of their clients’ needs and the issues they face simply through talking to them.
The fact that Jo Daly found it “difficult trying to explain to a local butcher, who had plenty of customers, why they should advertise” clearly illustrates that she was in the wrong job.
The B2B and regional sectors may not offer the perks of a bright career in London, but many talented and successful ad sales people do not desire a job that involves constant PowerPoint presentations and lunches, and would rather spend time working with business people who can benefit from advertising in the most effective media for them.
I look back fondly at the years of working with some great people whose needs ensured I was always as creative and results-driven as possible. Sorry you couldn’t hack it, Jo.
Libby Campbell, account executive, Starcom Mediavest
I read with amusement your feature on The media jobs from hell. Most people, both those who planned a career in media and those who fell into the job, have one or several jobs from hell on their CVs.
I began my media life as a graduate flogging classified on an embarrassing business-tobusiness title. (A noble profession, but not one I was suited to!) However, the same can be said of most industries, and media is no exception. The fact remains that there are always going to be some managers that can do more to enthuse and motivate their executives.
All sections of the media industry, be they media owners or media agencies, have a responsibility to engage their team-members.
There are a number of straightforward ways in which this can be addressed. Regular training and appraisals are great ways to involve and engage staff, enabling clear career progression.
There may be many media jobs from hell, but there is no job that is always heavenly either.
Everyone has great days at work, everyone has days when they feel unmotivated.
All anyone within the workplace can do is their best.
Managers need to ensure they give credit where credit is due to their teams at all times. If people feel they are a valuable and important asset to their company, they are far more likely to work harder and inspire other to do the same.
Staff need to be aware that they are an essential part of the infrastructure and not just a payroll number.