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Never stop improving

creative, OMB , One Minute Briefs, BURN, marketing, advertising, learn, improveFor anyone who doesn’t know (where have you been hiding?), One Minute Briefs is a community of creatives that respond to live briefs on twitter, every weekday.

There’s only one rule – you have one minute to create an ad.

Run by Nick Entwistle and his seemingly endless Bank of Creativity, the briefs range from speculative ads for random day-to-day items (think toilet plungers, vegetarian sausages and mouthwash) to real client-set briefs with prizes up for grabs.

With over 9,000 followers and counting, it’s a veritable feast of creativity and every single brief produces brilliant ideas. And yes, every brief also produces sh*t ideas – but that isn’t the point.

The point’s to open yourself up creatively and abandon the fear of failure that stops so many great ideas from ever seeing the light of day.

Not everything is going to be amazing. Most of them are going to be terrible.

But you only spent a minute on it, so there’s no pressure.

I first got steered towards OMB by my MDs at BURN.

As a young creative, they want me to hone my craft and improve every day. My Creative Director even teamed up with me on my first OMB brief.

They appreciate that tackling a new creative brief every day is only going to make me better at what I do. Your mind is a muscle. Ignore it and it’ll atrophy, exercise it and it’ll grow.

And more than that – they know that looking at other people’s ideas is a great way to discover new ways of thinking. There are so many OMBLES (yep, that’s what we call ourselves) that have made me a better creative. Not because I’m trying to compete against them, but because one day someone will have looked at a brief in a way that I didn’t even think about – and I’ll remember that for the next one. And the one after that. And the one after that.

Everything I learn from One Minute Briefs, I bring to the table in my agency briefs. It’s a learning experience. And it’s FREE.

So I was both surprised saddened to read yesterday that a talented OMBLE has actually been banned by his employer from entering One Minute Briefs.

For the life of me, I can’t think why. We only do it when time allows anyway – it’s not like there’s a stack of paid work sat in your inbox and you’re ignoring it so you can write an ad for pencil sharpeners. So to ban it completely seems extreme.

Most companies are happy to pay to send their staff to training courses and improvement seminars etc. etc., so why would you stop your creatives from becoming… more creative?

BURN has identified new business opportunities, won new clients and just last week won a Chip Shop commendation – all as a direct result of the work our creative department has done during down time. And it’s worth pointing out that that Chip Shop commendation came from an idea that was originally a One Minute Brief submission.

Personally, I’d encourage all creatives to have a go at One Minute Briefs as often as possible. If you want to be a better creative, it’s the best way to improve.

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The pains and the gains 18 months on

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