David Ogilvy’s Advice

David Ogilvy is known as the father of advertising. He founded the ad agency Ogilvy and Mathers. Here’s some advice he gave to his employees republished in the book The Unpublished David Ogilvy, via Quartz. Our city government could learn from it.

One of the most priceless assets Ogilvy & Mather can have is the respect of our clients and of the whole business community.

This comes from the following:

1. Our offices must always be headed by the kind of people who command respect. Not phonies, zeros or bastards.

2. Always be honest in your dealings with clients. Tell them what you would do if you were in their shoes.

3. If we do a good job for our clients, that will become known. We will smell of success, and that will bring us success.

4. If we treat our employees well, they will speak well of Ogilvy & Mather to their friends. Assuming that each employee has 100 friends, 250,000 people now have friends who work for Ogilvy & Mather. Among them are present and prospective clients.

5. In meeting with clients, do not assume the posture of servants. They need you as much as you need them.

6. While you are responsible to your clients for sales results, you are also responsible to consumers for the kind of advertising you bring into their homes. Your aim should be to create advertising that is in good taste. I abhor advertising that is blatant, dull, or dishonest. Agencies which transgress this principle are not widely respected.

7. We must pull our weight as good citizens.

If we get rid of the phonies, zeros, and bastards, City Hall will be a lonely place.

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