November 28, 2021

Rob Schwartz Chair at TBWA New York Group

­­Rob Schwartz is the Chair of the newly-formed TBWA NEW YORK GROUP which includes TBWA\Chiat\Day NY, Lucky Generals NYC and 180NY. The Group is comprised of three distinct and separate creative agencies unified in their belief that the unreasonable power of creativity leads to unreasonably epic results for brands.

Rob is the rare creative person who is fascinated by all aspects of a business and finds ways to create breakthrough platforms and campaigns that build brands and get results. Since he transformed from Chief Creative Officer of Chiat LA to CEO of Chiat New York, the office experienced explosive growth, more than doubling in size. And helping the TBWA Collective earn AdAge A-List honors (back to back), Adweek’s Global Agency of the Year. And Fast Company’s “Most Innovative Companies.”

In 2019, Chiat NY earned 18 Lions marking the best creative performance at Cannes in the history of the office. Throughout his career, Rob has spearheaded work for blue-chip brands including Nissan, Lexus, McDonald’s, Pepsi and Visa, to name but a few. Along the way he has won nearly every advertising award including Grand Effie’s, Cannes Lions, and One Show pencils. He has also been a Cannes Lions Jury President and jury member of the prestigious Titanium Lion.

Rob was recognized as ThinkLA’s “Leader of the Year.” And is considered one of Adweek’s “25 Voices to Follow in Social Media.” The story of his New York office turnaround is a case study taught by Harvard Business School professors.

A few more facts about him? He’s written for Hollywood. He is a board member of the 4As. He is a Friar at the Friars Club. He has been a guest lecturer at Stanford, Harvard, USC, UCLA, CCNY and Yale. He’s an original “Manbassador” of the 3% Movement and now proudly sits on their board. And serves in the board of City College of New York (BIC Program). His podcast, The Disruptor Series Podcast was named “Best Agency Podcast” by Adweek.

When he’s not working or tweeting, you’ll find him hanging out with Betsy, his wife of 25+ years. And walking their black Labrador, Pepper around Washington Square Park.

 

 

 

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Some Timestamps:

I’m that what did you say? (03:44)

Where does wanting to do the right thing come from? (05:46)

What are your BAYSICS (7:44)

A little bit about what it’s like at TBWA (12:46)

A little bit about pirates and why they’re amazing (19:33)

As a consiglieri… (27:03)

Chiat Day. The first 50 years. The Book. (30:34)

I write an email every Friday (44: 19)

There are a couple of people who have really influenced me (45:50)

The National Comedy center is probably the most amazing museum you may ever go to (49:09)

I just did not want to live in a country where Donald Trump was President. And I just had to do what I could do. Hence DogloversforJoe.com.

What I would say to people starting out in our industry today (56:34)

 

Edited Transcription with typos – sorry:

Eitan Chitayat  0:02

Rob Schwartz is the Chair of the newly-formed TBWA NEW YORK GROUP which includes TBWA\Chiat\Day NY, Lucky Generals NYC and 180NY. The Group is comprised of three distinct and separate creative agencies unified in their belief that the unreasonable power of creativity leads to unreasonably epic results for brands.

Rob is the rare creative person who is fascinated by all aspects of a business and finds ways to create breakthrough platforms and campaigns that build brands and get results. Since he transformed from Chief Creative Officer of Chiat LA to CEO of Chiat New York, the office experienced explosive growth, more than doubling in size. And helping the TBWA Collective earn AdAge A-List honors (back to back), Adweek’s Global Agency of the Year. And Fast Company’s “Most Innovative Companies.”

 

In 2019, Chiat NY earned 18 Lions marking the best creative performance at Cannes in the history of the office. Throughout his career, Rob has spearheaded work for blue-chip brands including Nissan, Lexus, McDonald’s, Pepsi and Visa, to name but a few. Along the way he has won nearly every advertising award including Grand Effie’s, Cannes Lions, and One Show pencils. He has also been a Cannes Lions Jury President and jury member of the prestigious Titanium Lion.

 

Rob was recognized as ThinkLA’s “Leader of the Year.” And is considered one of Adweek’s “25 Voices to Follow in Social Media.” The story of his New York office turnaround is a case study taught by Harvard Business School professors.

 

A few more facts about him? He’s written for Hollywood. He is a board member of the 4As. He is a Friar at the Friars Club. He has been a guest lecturer at Stanford, Harvard, USC, UCLA, CCNY and Yale. He’s an original “Manbassador” of the 3% Movement and now proudly sits on their board. And serves in the board of City College of New York (BIC Program). His podcast, The Disruptor Series Podcast was named “Best Agency Podcast” by Adweek.

 

And when he’s not working, or tweeting, we’re talking to me, you’ll find him hanging out with Betsy, his wife of 25 years plus, and working there black Labrador pepper. Rob. Wow, I’m just really happy to finally get you in the hot seat after you had me in your hot seat.

 

Rob Schwartz  2:13

Yeah, thank you for reading all that. Just having you read that. I’m tired.

 

Eitan Chitayat  2:18

It that’s a pretty impressive bio.

 

Rob Schwartz  2:23

And that’s heavily edited.But by the way, I’m just I’m just looking forward to doing what we normally do, which is either have a conversation or zoom or most recently, have a coffee sit down over there at Casa lever on 53rd Street, by the way, not a sponsor.

 

Eitan Chitayat  2:43

Yeah, we’re gonna do that. We met in in Tel Aviv, around 11 years ago when I was the executive creative director at TBWA. Digital, and that’s how we met. But you haven’t been back since then? unless I’m mistaken. Right. You haven’t been back?

 

Rob Schwartz  2:54

No, I don’t think so. So yeah, no, both my kids were bar mitzvah’d there. So I think that…

 

Eitan Chitayat  3:02

So what that’s it. You never coming to Israel again? Come on.

 

Rob Schwartz  3:04

I only have two kids. So you know, well,

 

Eitan Chitayat  3:06

I mean, you can adopt?

 

I have a confession to make to the listeners, which is back in the day, when I was coming up with the idea for this podcast, you really helped me. And you really helped me and you actually inspired me because of because of your podcast. But you actually helped me with my concept. After I told you about I’m that and that’s what I wanted it to be called, you kind of suggested something, which is kind of become the way that we do things around here, which is I asked a question, which sets the whole thing off, and I’m going to ask you the question.

 

Finally, Rob Schwartz, can you please complete the sentence? I’m that…

 

Rob Schwartz  3:44

I’m that? All right. Well, the one that I was thinking of for you, and again, I you know, it’s I feel very arrogant saying it, but I’ll say it and then we can figure out where to go, which is I’m that mensch.

 

Eitan Chitayat  3:59

Okay, that really annoys me.

 

Because, because whenever I talk about you to other people, I call you a mensch. And so, I was gonna say that, that you’re a real mensch. But now, you’re going to have to tell me why you’re that mensch.

 

Rob Schwartz  4:15

Well, Mensch, as I understand it is a Yiddish word. And you know, at face value, it means man, but the texture of it, and particularly to, you know, people who have a feel for all things Yiddish. I mentioned somebody who, who tries to do the right thing. As I was thinking about that word and your show. I was just thinking something I say to people all the time throughout my career, which was just do the right thing and the right things will happen. And I think that’s been the philosophy of my marriage. Notice, I just try to do the right things and, and nine times out of 10 the right things happen.

 

Eitan Chitayat  4:58

What do you mean the right thing In what contexts in every context, what is the right thing? What’s the, you know, what’s the wrong thing? That’s actually more interesting?

 

Rob Schwartz  5:06

Well, the wrong thing is, when you know what you’re doing is somehow gonna harm, you know, harm a situation harm a person, and doing the right thing, which is not often the easy thing, but you can do the right thing, which is, you know, do the thing that is the highest form of something or the, I don’t know, the ideal of something, you know, like, try to go towards metaphorically try to go towards the light, try to try to do things, you know, if you feel like you need to send somebody, a thank you card, write the Thank You card, just try to do the right thing.

 

Unknown Speaker  5:45

Where’s that come from?

 

Rob Schwartz  5:46

That’s a good question. You know, my, my grandfather on my mother’s side was was a was a mensch kind of guy. And I spent a lot of time with him growing up. But you know, both my grandparents, and I think, you know, a lot of it just just comes from him, like, he would always do the right thing. You know, if he shoveled his driveway, he would shovel his neighbor’s driveway when it snowed, you know, if someone needed a ride to the airport, he gave him the ride to the airport, he was just, you know, that kind of person. You know, I think we have our heroes of fiction and our heroes of film. But sometimes you have heroes in life, and he was kind of a, you know, kind of like one of my heroes,

 

Eitan Chitayat  6:25

that perspective is, is is not an easy code to live by. My approach is, and before it became a poster really was, you know, work hard, be nice. And I try and do the I wouldn’t, I wouldn’t, I wouldn’t call myself, I don’t have the guts to call myself a management, like I try and do the right thing. But it does come with a price. I find and I’m wondering, look, you’re spearheading three agencies, you’re you’re very successful in the in the world of advertising, but you are a really nice guy. On a very personal level. I mean, I actually don’t know you that well, professionally, because I think we’ve connected like maybe bonded over over different things. How do you become successful in here? I mean, I know it’s kind of a silly question. But when Don’t you have to be ruthless to succeed to get to where you are? Hmm.

 

Rob Schwartz  7:14

Well, let’s not, you know, Shine anybody on I’m very competitive. Oh, I could be nice and try to do the right thing. So the right things happen and all that. But at the end of the day, I want to win. I really want to win for our clients. That’s the most important thing. And I want to win for our people.

 

Eitan Chitayat  7:40

No, no, no, no, you want to win for you. What do you mean for your clients?

 

Rob Schwartz  7:44

Well, this, this goes into my, you know, another piece of philosophy, which those who have worked with me know it, and I call it basics. It’s spelled capital B, capital A capital Y, lowercase s ICs. Basics. And basics is a way of orienting your professional life, particularly in you know, in advertising. And that is you do what’s right for the brands, you’re working on first brand, first, do what’s right for the agency second, and then you you come in third, your your star will rise. But if you do what’s right for the brand, do it you know, do what’s right for clients do what’s right for the agency, your star will rise. And I I’ve seen in my career, a lot of people who have that upside down. And I think the more that it’s all about you, the less successful you’re gonna ultimately B. So that to me is you know that that’s that’s a philosophy that’s an opera I call it an operating philosophy,

 

Unknown Speaker  8:44

basics. Well, where does that come from? Where does that come from? It comes from seeing

 

Rob Schwartz  8:49

a lot of people and a lot of agency experiences that did not perform basics, that, you know, seeing people have kind of a me first attitude. And as I started to get into more positions of power, the more I realized that wow, when I cared about the clients, I’m really focused on the work, good things happened. And when I became a chief creative officer out in Los Angeles, basics was a way to kind of orient it was a big team as a big agency. But it was a way to orient the teams and the people towards clients versus each other.

 

Because humans by nature are constantly comparing themselves to each other and constantly trying to destroy one another. And I always felt that, you know, the enemies were on the outside, and we’ve got to serve our clients. That’s that’s the thing that’s gonna unify us and focus us.

 

Eitan Chitayat  9:53

I haven’t gone to your company site in a while. And before the before our conversation I went to it What I really, really noticed, and it comes across as very sincere. And I believe that it is I don’t believe it’s just good advertising. I mean, the whole site is amazing advertising and marketing, but it’s like you can tell when something’s true or not, I think, especially when you when you’re in advertising is, how much do you celebrate the team, like, all of the videos that are there, and they’re quite a few of them, that the narrative is really revolving around the team and the narrative, it’s also coming directly from the team, which I thought was really was really great. Like, I haven’t seen that in a while in a way that felt so authentic,

 

Rob Schwartz  10:41

yet, well, it’s good that that’s happening. I mean, a number of different ways to think about this, you know, there’s a dynamic from our business, which was kind of the Lone Rock Star theory, you know, so you had a lot of icons, Bill Bernbach, an icon, you know, Lee cloud icon, you know, where it was about an individual. And I also think, in terms of just culture, too, you know, we had a lot of individuals, you know, John Lennon, you know, bado, even, you know, coming out of you too.

 

And I think one of the dynamics that’s that’s been happening is a made up word I’ll give you which is kind of the term of culture and culture making. So I think that’s just the dynamic that’s happening, you know, and some people harness it and some people don’t. And that’s, that’s fine. I think the other thing, you know, very specific to the agency, is, you know, particularly in New York, at TBWA, Chiat. In New York, we had very team minded people. And we were very cognizant of building a great team because the agency was getting big. And one person can’t bottleneck an agency.

 

Eitan Chitayat  12:13

What’s it like a TBWA? I mean, I wanted to ask you two questions. Actually, the first one I wanted to ask was, what’s it like? And what’s different about TBWA? From your perspective? And another another question, which may be I’m going to tell you, maybe you can think about a little bit before, it’s like, what’s the day in the life for you at work? Like, you know, you have three separate creative agencies. And I know that you’re very involved. And I want you to tell me about it, though. Like, what’s it? Like, for you, but also, what is it about TBWA?

 

Rob Schwartz  12:46

Well, let’s, let’s do TBWA first, because I’ve been around the place for 23 years, which is crazy. Agency. That’s a whole other podcast, what I think is best about TBWA is you get to walk into the hall, wherever, whatever office you go to. And there’s some great offices around the what we call the collective, not a network, but a collective, you get to walk in, and you have the opportunity to do something breakthrough to do something great to do something creative. You, you have that opportunity when you walk in.

 

Now, there’s an expectation that you’ll do that, but I like to look at it more as you have a chance to do that. And I’ve always felt that, you know, since the day I, you know, I walked in there and 1998. So, that’s kind of the first big piece of what’s great about it, which is, hey, we’re here to do something really amazing for our clients. So I think that’s the first thing. I think the second thing that you would notice, or what’s great about the agency is that people like each other.

 

I have this interesting relationship with Bill traigo. So he’s the T of TBWA, TBWA people, it was a team that we stand for the San for the best worldwide agency. Sometimes I just say yes, but no, no. TBWA is for people. Tre goes Minaj wisened, Dangar. And as roadie and what was interesting is that these four founders, you know, were four different disciplines, there was a writer, there was a strategic planner, there was an account person, there was a management person, and they put four desks together and they, you know, came up with this this company, and I was having breakfast with Bill tray goes. He’s in his 80s. Now, and we never worked together, but I reached out to him when I took the CEO job I just said, you know, I wanted to talk to the founder. I was asking about the agency and their success particularly in the 80s and I said why was it so successful? You know, this was birthing absolute and you know, some other you know, great pieces. Other agencies had had their issues.

 

They had their rivalries internally, they were always fighting, he said, but we always liked each other. And then we always helped each other. And I think that was something I, he articulated. What I have always seen in the agency is that the elite, you know, if you have an issue in Paris, we are going to help you from New York, if you have an opportunity in LA and you need some help, we’re going to send some people, I don’t think that’s true. In every agency, I remember when I worked in the Saatchi empire, there was a lot that was great about the Saatchi Empire, but they were not as kind to one another as I see it. TBWA. So this sense of collaboration is another thing. So creativity, collaboration, and I think the last piece of it is, is output, we’re trying to make things we’re trying to have creative product, this is not just a company that’s built to just show up to meetings. So those are the really the three things that make it amazing, this is your chance to do something great, very collaborative, and actually, you know, making

 

Eitan Chitayat  16:09

How do you keep nurturing that? I mean, you’ve been around like you said, 23 years, they’re, like younger generations coming up younger people, they’ve been in the business not too long. How do you nurture that? How do you feed that? How do you how do you make sure that that continues, and that remains the legacy in the day to day…

 

Rob Schwartz  16:25

It’s much harder than it’s ever been? I will tell you that, you know, agencies used to be funded by media budgets. So when before things were disintermediated, and you had media and the creative parts of the agency together, you could take that media commission, and you could fund the creative departments, you could fund the strategy, you know, and there was less stringent accounting. And I don’t mean that in a nefarious way, I just mean, there was more flex in the system. Whereas now, every dollar is calculated by by everybody, by the internal controls by the clients. So clients pay exactly 100%. You know, whatever they’re paying for, that’s what they get.

 

And there used to be some fat in the agency. And you would turn that fat into muscle, you know, when you needed to, it was a much better system. So you had more cultures, you could stay in agencies you didn’t, you know, if we lost a piece of business, you didn’t lose your job necessarily, because you were part of the fabric of the agency, and we would win it back somewhere else. But now, if you’re in a piece of business, and you lose the business, you’re probably going to lose your job. And this is a real problem. Because you can’t create culture, you know, culture, culture, it doesn’t want to be transactional.

 

Culture wants arbitrage culture wants some, some flex, because it’s not always quantifiable, but it’s always valuable. So that’s a very long way to say that it’s hard to keep the culture and the best thing you can do is storytelling, narrative. These are things that we’ve done, that’s what the book is about. These are the ways we approach things. These are these are, you know, people have had these problems before you not dissimilar to, you know, Bible and Talmud. And you try to teach this is our way, you know, the TBWA way. Well, and that ramble, but there you go,

 

Eitan Chitayat  18:29

well, listen, ramble away. That’s why we’re here. But like, that opens up something interesting that you and I have discussed a bit, which is culture, you know, we’re talking about culture and how difficult it is, in today’s culture and how, you know, maybe going off a little bit on how do you how do you build a culture, when you can’t be as like, you have to be so safe. Now. You have to, like, say the right things. You have to hire the right people. You have to answer in the way that people expect you to answer which is, and one of the things that really stood out was, you know, the whole TBWA by being the Navy when you could be a pirate. It’s really hard to be a pirate in a culture like that. We have to be so careful. Really?

 

Rob Schwartz  19:13

No, we’re basically Disney pirates. Now. I think, you know, I, when, at a certain moment at the agency, I did a lot of a lot of research on pirates and pirate culture. And it’s remarkable there. I mean, there’s there’s one of the best management books a person can read is a book called Under The Black Flag. And it’s a true accounting and history of pirates. I think David Cordingley is the as a writer under the black flag, but and you know, it wasn’t what was great about the Golden Age of Piracy was that there was already Diversity, Equity and Inclusion baked into the way they operated. You know, some of the more successful pilots, frankly, were female pilots. You know, it didn’t matter where you came from, as long as you were on the ship, and you were following the rules of the ship. And if you follow the rules of the ship, when the treasurer came in, we would you know, the ship would proportionate, you know, to everybody equally. You know, there are other great things about piracy too, you know, element of surprise, doing more with less the elements of deception. You know, these are great business tools. And it was there was a moment, I think, in the agency, at least, you know, I felt kind of pre canceled culture, where we were more, we had much more swagger.

 

Eitan Chitayat  20:37

And it was more fun. No, yeah, of course. Of course. I mean, I hate this, I hate this whole cancel culture thing. I mean, I really do, I really, really do. And I’ve been, you know, just because of the stuff that I’ve done, the public stuff that I’ve done, whether it’s yeah, I remember that there was there was someone very, very, very well known in the branding world, I’m sure you know, him. And when I sent him she’s that woman, which was literally just a celebration of, of women, from a very, very personal perspective that I did with with my friend Dana. Then he took it upon himself to write to me and say, don’t, you’re going to be attacked, you’re going to be and don’t don’t do it. Don’t bring that heat. And, and that, of course, you know, me, like, I was like, fuck that, of course, I’m going to do it now. But it’s this fear. It’s this fear. That’s, that’s, that’s killing creativity, I think in stifling people. And, of course, there are certain lines that you shouldn’t cross because they’re in bad taste, but like, it hurts the creativity.

 

Rob Schwartz  21:44

I mean, we’ve kind of destroyed comedy and destroyed advertising. I mean, it’s very hard to be funny now. And it’s very hard to be funny in advertising very hard to be relevant. And I think a big part of comedy was, you know, taboos. You know, you would say the stuff that people were thinking,

 

Eitan Chitayat  22:00

Well, you’re a real you’re very important person in advertising. I mean, I think you’re, you’re a leader in advertising. And to hear you saying that is really depressing. So how? Well, I mean, it is, I mean, what can we do about it? What can the people who are spearheading advertising and branding and the communications field, what can what? What can be done?

 

Rob Schwartz  22:35

Well, that’s a, you know, $64,000 question. not accounting for inflation, by the way, what I’m feeling, you know, of all the dynamics that you’ve laid out there are these negative dynamics, these gotcha people who are out there to me, they’re kind of two levers we can pull. One is universality, how can we come up with ideas that are just very human, irrespective of you know, who you are, and where you’re from just just great.

 

These are ideas we all experience as humans, you know, it’s kind of a rise or the demand of pure humanity. That’s number one. The other lever is authenticity. And I think when I think about your film, you know, you’re I’m that films. I mean, they just come from an authentic place. So you have no trouble defending them. Because you’re like, hey, this, this is just comes from the heart, you know, so I’m going to defend it. So I think universality and authenticity are probably two of the few things that we can use these days.

 

Eitan Chitayat  23:51

But you and I are older. What about the 25 year old, the 26 year old? What about the people who are coming into this culture? I mean, we’ve been around the block, I can do what I want to do, and I don’t give a fuck, you know, I’ve got my track record. I’ve done I’ve been there, done that, and you have to, and I think everything that you’re saying makes sense. But it’s I think it’s easy.

 

Not easy for us to say but they don’t even know so many of these young people are not even aware of how fucked up the situation really is. I don’t know I just I just you know, I listened to you know, to Barry Weiss. I don’t know if you listen to her podcast, honestly. knows you. Listen to it. She’s She’s amazing. You know, it’s hard to be it’s hard to be honest today. Yeah.

 

Rob Schwartz  24:32

Just thinking that one second. Can you be authentic without being honest? Maybe you can. I’m just as we’re having this conversation, there’s another part of my mind that is saying, okay, so who’s successful? You know, I think Oatley as a brand is very successful, right and what is only doing only is just talking to you, you know, person to person Human, their stuff is human. And there’s a you know, you know, in our parlance, a wonderful disruption that they’re using analog media to do it. Right. They’re not they’re not all caught up in, let’s chase people through the algorithm. They’re, they’re more about, let’s surprise people. And we’re gonna go analog. So rule number one, which I think a lot of people don’t know is awareness if people are not aware of your advertising, everything else is academic. So I think that’s that’s to me, Oatley is doing something right with that. I think it’s because they’re, you know, they’re, they’re having these human conversations.

 

Eitan Chitayat  25:41

That’s what I love about podcasts, by the way. I mean, I think podcasts are the one medium where where you get, you know, like even this, you know, just two people sitting down and they’re talking to each other, and there’s no spin, there’s no, I mean, sure, we know people are gonna listen to this and everything. But that’s not going to get in the way of like, I think, an honest conversation. And I find that also, when I listen to other podcasts, it’s kind of refreshing in this world of social media and TV, which I try not to watch and videos on the Facebook newsfeed or, you know, it’s just that I think that honesty and authenticity is something that I’m really hoping that the brands will start talking to people like their people again, you know, and if you’d like you said, Oh, totally. I mean, it’s funny, oddly, actually, they’re in Israel as well. And, and they have the same kind of approach, you know, like, advertising and so cultural differences and everything, but, but that’s very much there are, what they do, which, which I love as well. But listen, let’s get to the second question, which was really about like, a day in your life? Because I mean, you I mean, I don’t think people understand exactly what it is that you do. I would love to see, to hear from you. I haven’t even ever asked you the question like, what’s it? Like? What’s it like to be doing everything that it is that you do? Like, what do you wake up in the morning? You have your I know what you do. But how was your day? It’s, it seems crazy. Well,

 

Rob Schwartz  27:03

yeah, well, Chair is different than CEO. That that’s for sure. In a lot of ways, it’s much more entrepreneurial. I’m trying to do two things every day. I am an impresario. And I am a consiglieri And impresario is I am banging the drum to get clients and talent to pay attention to these agencies.

 

And as a consiglieri, I am counseling and coaching the leaders of these companies. Bit of a CEO whisper. So that’s pretty much what I’m doing in terms of the the game plan. On a daily basis, I wake up very early, you know, between 530, and six, every morning, I make a coffee and I read a lot of papers, digitally. And I pretty much go from right to left. So I start with the New York Post, I do the Daily Mail, I do the Wall Street Journal, I do the Financial Times I do the New York Times, then I’m done, then it’s time. And of course, you know, my wife will eventually wake up and we’ll chat about a bunch of stuff. And she really likes movie trailers. So she’s constantly disturbing the peace because oh, let me show you this.

 

Then I walk the dog. And when I walked the dog, I when I became a CEO, I stopped listening to Howard Stern and goofy stuff. And I started listening to Bloomberg. And there’s a, there’s a show called surveillance and they cover the market. And I might understand 40% Of what they’re talking about. But you know, when they talk about taper tantrum is in dot plots, and all these super financial things, I don’t get it, or to truly understand it, but I listened to it, and I’m absorbing it. And then, you know, my day begins. And I’m spending a lot more time with Lucky generals these days.

 

And either I’ll go into the lucky Generals office right here on 28th. And fifth with magnificent views of the wall of the Empire State Building and Freedom Tower and meet with the teams or we’ll talk to clients. Or I’m, you know, doing these these team calls, you know, working with the with the agency, sometimes you know, we’re reviewing a deck, sometimes we’re prepping for a pitch, sometimes we’re looking at work and you know, I’m giving you two cents on something. And through all of that. The other big dynamic of my life on a daily basis is I just talk to people. So people, you know, they write to me on LinkedIn, and they want to have a chat. I am more than happy to talk to everybody because I really feel that when I started in the business, you know, there were certain people that were very kind and will talk to me, but there were a lot who weren’t. So I always like the Gandhi quote BE THE CHANGE you’d like to see in the world. So I like to be there for people. I feel like I’m giving you very long answers. It’s bothering because I’m a reductionist at heart.

 

Unknown Speaker  30:02

Yeah, but clearly you’re not.

 

Rob Schwartz  30:07

I’m constantly saying that slide has too many things on it. Give me you know, four words in a nice picture.

 

Eitan Chitayat  30:15

Yeah. But that’s advertising. And that’s not real life. Well, you Well, I mean, you mentioned a few things about all the things that you do in the people that you speak to in the many hundreds of 1000s of people just like me that you speak to on LinkedIn. But then I want to talk about this book. Yes. Can you tell me what this book is called?

 

Rob Schwartz  30:34

Chiat Day, the first 50 years.

 

Eitan Chitayat  30:37

So tell me about that. Because I have read it. I haven’t finished reading it. Because it’s kind of precious. So I’m, I take my time. Tell me about this book.

 

Rob Schwartz  30:47

Well, the book came about because the editing was going slowly. The original idea this, this is, you know, Lee Clow, our, you know, creative chairman, our guru, our lead creative director, our finest art director, the industry’s legend, Lee wanted to do a 50 year anniversary of Shai day, you know, in his mind, Shai de has spawned, you know, apart from the merger with, with TBWA, that happened in 1996, there was always a shy day, strand of DNA throughout the company. And when you think about TBWA, it’s not just TBWA. It’s also Media Arts Lab as wel…

 

Eitan Chitayat  31:32

Tell us what media arts lab means for those who don’t know,

 

Rob Schwartz  31:36

yes, TBWA Media Arts Lab is the agency of record for Apple. So you wanted to celebrate the 50 years. And as we just started talking about it, there was a creative director in New York, a guy by the name of Adam wall, I mentioned the idea to him and he said, Hey, you know, it would be cool. What if you did, like the opening scene of Reservoir Dogs, and you got different people from the agency around a table talking about the agency. And I said, that’s a good idea. Write that up.

 

So he just wrote a little thing up and we sent it to Lee. And Lee loved it. And before again, before the book started, there’s a film and the film is still in development. And the film was going to be kind of five generations of shiny day people sitting around the table at what was then our and I put this in air quotes, our cafeteria at shy of Venice in LA, and kind of over sushi. These five generations of shy people would tell the story of the agency, you know, these were people both, you know, in the agency and people connected to the agency. So people in the agency Bob Cooperman, you know, longtime Chiat they’re connected to the agency, Ridley Scott. You know, Ridley Scott came in and talked to Lee Oh, hello, Frank Erie talk to leak because Frank Gehry designed the Shai day building, so on and on and on. And, again, so Lee, you know, had his lunches, you know, Jeff Gorman was there.

 

I mean, all the kind of luminaries, you know. And the lunches went great. We filmed the lunches, they edited them, and they were fantastic. While we were just waiting, Lee when’s the cut going to be done? We’re working on it. And waiting and waiting. And at a certain point, you know, I like maybe we should just do a book. So he turned to me, and he just said, I want to do a book. What do I think we should do? So I just, you know, leave it with me, let me get it going. So I reached out to all the people from the lunches all the people that I knew, and I said, Hey, we’re gonna do this book. And my idea was, it’s 50 years. So let’s do the 50 best stories. And I just asked people for stories. And they started coming in. And you know, we needed to kind of put them together. So we hired a great journalist, a guy by the name of Doug Quinn Kwok, they used to write for a campaign. And he helped me write these 50 stories. And so the book is a combination. The first half is just kind of these epic spreads have the most iconic work over the last 50 years. Then the second half of the book is the 50 stories.

 

Eitan Chitayat  34:20

So I’ve read a few of these stories. First of all, they’re beautifully written, you get the spirit of each kind of campaign down on a page. Yeah. And there’s some I mean, it’s just a household name, ad campaigns. Amazing. And one of the stories that made me like sit up in my seat was impossible is nothing. The way the manifesto was written, was actually you know, the copywriter. You’ll tell me her name, and she was just brushing her teeth. And then she came in, and she spat out this incredible piece of writing, which is like a paragraph long, and that was it. And that just got plastered everywhere. And that became a de disses come back campaign. which is culturally so relevant also now, but it’s like the way that it came into being. And I love the story. Dogs rule. pedigree, I thought that was just beautiful. Even just like the the thinking behind like the Apple campaign for music, you know, like with the silhouettes and showing the earbuds and the stories are brilliant. I think going through these pages, you just realize how much TBWA has influenced our culture. Thank you for for sending it. I hope that that’s okay that I’m saying that. But thank you for

 

Rob Schwartz  35:34

Yeah, no, no, no worries, I want to hit on something you talked about on Apple silhouettes. And, you know, great art director, Susan Allen saying, who’s really at the epicenter of that, that idea is authentic and universal. And I think it’s still one of the best advertising campaigns ever. And you’d be hard pressed to find something is good is that today, and people still remember it.

 

And I think if we’re going to live in a cancel culture, we need ideas that supersede cancels, you know, and this is above you, what are you going to cancel here? There’s nothing to cancel. You know, this is this is pure celebration. You know, you mentioned dogs rule. I remember when I didn’t I didn’t work on this directly. But I remember, you know, within the agency, the frustration at that time, which was, we presented this universal idea about the love of dogs. I think this was Lee’s insight that was if you show me that you love my dog, I’ll let you feed him. You know that it was about it was really about love.

 

Strategically, I think Suzanne Powers was one of the planners on this, Chris Adams, Margaret Keane, I’m just trying to think of some of the people it’s helping you remember that? The point, there was this moment with the clients, which was pedigree was saying, Well, we’re a dog food company. And the twist the disruption, if you will, the insight that turned it was literally your a dog loving company, to not just a dog food company, dog loving company, that was a bit of a breakthrough. And it started to, you know, good ideas often lead to good questions. And the first question was, why do you work in offices that aren’t dog friendly? Hmm, why are there people who admittedly don’t like dogs working on this business? And again, it was a universal idea. And you know, the clients were always like, no, well, you know, give us the differentiated point of view on our kibble versus their kibble. It was all about, you know, these kind of MBA, we need a point of differentiation.

 

And I agree with, with this professor, you know, it’s not so much differentiation. What’s distinctive about you? We love dogs. We’re the dog food company that loves dogs. If you love dogs, we love dogs. You’ll like our dog food. That’s it. And I think a lot of what I’ve, you know, learned at the agency over the years is, you know, find something universal find, stop overthinking, you know.

 

Eitan Chitayat  38:17

So, interestingly enough, when I was in New York, and I was at Ogilvy and Mather, I was you know, I was always doing some side work. And there’s this woman called Renee Ryan, I was going out with someone at the time. And she was working at her at her office. And she was a lovely woman, and she came up with a dog fragrance of really amazing fragrance that cost like $70, the packaging by Karim Rashid, and they asked me to do the writing. The product was called sexy beast. I think it was great. I’ll send you I think it’s actually on the natty website, the work that we did, when you open the package, the first thing that you saw was love your dog. Huh. And it was very minimalist with with with what I wrote. Because I think that when you hit on a universal truth, there’s not much that you have to say. In fact, the more that you say, the more complicated it’s going to get. First of all, the I just want to get back to the book, like, how can people see can people get these books? Or is it like, well, we

 

Rob Schwartz  39:20

will we only made a certain amount, you know, we did them for people in the agency originally and for alumni. So, you know, they’re not everywhere, and they’re very expensive to make and so no,

 

Eitan Chitayat  39:33

no, okay, well, so for those listening that find someone who has a book and then you can borrow

 

Rob Schwartz  39:37

it, yeah. Then there’s been an interesting tradition in the agency. Like there was a great book that I hunted down. It was all these ay Chiat quants notes from Chairman J. Which is great and again, there weren’t there weren’t a lot made and they were very rare. The original Shai de book, the first 20 years, you know, again, there was a limited run permits Only who did the book. So sometimes you can find them on eBay. So we had a legacy of, you know, making making the information rare. I know, we live in a world of democratized information, blah, blah, blah. But I kind of liked the fact that, you know, you got to join the agency, if you want this knowledge, you know, it’s it makes us distinctive, you know,

 

Eitan Chitayat  40:23

well, I hear you and as a as an alumni of TBWA, having been the ECD, here in Israel, of the digital department. I appreciate it. I love it, and I can’t wait to get to it. I have more questions for you. What do you really good at and I got an idea of what that might be because of some of the things that you said, but I also really would love to know what you’re like, what do you really suck at? And it doesn’t have to be work related at all.

 

Rob Schwartz  40:48

I mean, I suck at so much. I mean, that’s a whole podcast. I mean, I’m like really bad at details. Like, I’m terrible at like you, you show me a legal document? I mean, I’m just not going to read it.

 

Eitan Chitayat  41:03

Oh, yeah. You show anyone a legal document? And so that’s, that’s such a cop out. Rob. Come on. No, my wife.

 

Rob Schwartz  41:08

No, no, we just we’re doing a legal thing this morning. And she was all over it. You know, she was amazing at that. Um, what am I not good at?

 

Eitan Chitayat  41:17

Ah, no, by it, by the way that you’re bad at detail. Because I can imagine sitting with you and working on something. And that God’s in the details and you’re going to come and you’re going to be like, it’s not No, I mean, okay, for legal documents, fine. You suck at that kind of detail. But I don’t think that you suck it. I can’t imagine that you suck at detail. Sorry. Sorry, I’m pushing.

 

Rob Schwartz  41:37

Well, I once had this observation about, you know, working with Lee. And I said, you know, Lee is the kind of person who will find you the most magnificent stretch of beach. And then he will fight you over where, which is the prettiest shell? You know, and that was my observation on him. And I try to live up to that, too. I try to really see big picture. I’m pretty good at seeing big picture. And then yes, I mean, every once in a while, I’ll be like, Yeah, you know, nudge this nudge that. What else? Am I bad at? Brevity? I’ll tell you, I mean, I’m good at. I’m good at reading people. I’m good at finding stories. What do you mean, I have a separate radar up for a story. You know, I know that every person that you talk to, there’s a story there. Every brand that you encounter, there’s a story. I’ve just learned that you know, that’s how people that’s why I wrote the book, you know, worked on this 50 books, these are stories, people like stories. So I like to tell things in a story.

 

Eitan Chitayat  42:39

So you wrote this book. But you have a pretty interesting story. You have an interesting book to write, which I’ve mentioned to you, I think every time I speak to him, like what’s happening with your book, is there a book coming? When are you going to write the book? What’s happening? Not?

 

Rob Schwartz  42:54

Well, I suck at writing my own book. I don’t know. I don’t know if I don’t know. I honestly I don’t know. I was very gung ho to write a book right after I made this transition from CEO to chair but right now I just, I don’t know. I’m interested in other stuff. And I dropped away. Listen, you follow my Twitter feed, you’ll get all the wisdom you want to drop in gold.

 

Eitan Chitayat  43:19

I’ve forced myself to go there. Do you really like you really go to Twitter and you enjoy? I love Twitter. You do?

 

Rob Schwartz  43:26

Yeah. Twitter’s my favorite then LinkedIn. And then Instagram. Those are my three.

 

Eitan Chitayat  43:33

Twitter. I did a lot of Jewish advocacy, you know, anti semitism fighting the fight there. And Israel met with so much hate that, that it actually is just it’s so toxic. You know? Yeah, for me.

 

Rob Schwartz  43:46

There’s a lot of hate on Twitter, that’s for sure. But you know, this is one of those things Haters gonna hate. You know, I love that phrase. And one of the things I learned, you know, becoming a leader in an agency, and it’s the rule of threes, you know, a third of the people are going to love you, a third of the people gonna hate you. And a third of the people don’t care. So focus on the people who really believe in you, you know, and you may get a few of the apathetic folks to come along, but not everybody is going to love you.

 

Eitan Chitayat  44:15

Did you drop that wisdom on Twitter? Because that’s a good one.

 

Rob Schwartz  44:19

That was what you know, I think I think I told us to, you know, I read an email to the agency to this day, you know, every Friday, so I’ve done that. I’ve done the rule of threes out, that was a book too. We did a book called 52 Fridays, and it was emails.

 

Eitan Chitayat  44:34

Wait, so you said you sent me a couple of those emails, but I didn’t know that you made a book out of them. Really?

 

Rob Schwartz  44:39

Yeah. We did a book in 2016. Yeah. But you know, I started doing these emails. They happen by accident. I was just, you know, my first week, I was like, wow, everybody was so cool. I saw some cool stuff. Here’s what I saw. Thanks so much. Great week. So that was on a Friday. So Monday rolls around again. 2015. I’m a brand new CEO. All right. I loved your email. That email was really great. Oh, that email is great. Okay, next week happens. Saw cool stuff, nice people interesting things going on. I said, Hey, week two. Wow, here’s what I saw. This was great. This was wonderful. Thanks for letting me in here. Terrific. Okay, Monday rolls around. Wow, that email was amazing. I loved it. What are you gonna write this week? What and what I then realize the penny drop, okay, this is, this is a way for not only me to chronicle this journey. But this is a way for me to galvanize the agency. So I just started doing these emails.

 

Eitan Chitayat  45:35

They’re amazing. I love what you said about rule of three. And I actually want to ask you about like, um, people who have influenced you, like, who are the two or three people that have influenced you. You mentioned Lee Clough a few times, as I imagine, I imagine he’s on the list. Well, absolutely.

 

Rob Schwartz  45:50

I mean, you know, Lee was influencing me before I met them because you know, I would before as an advertising, I loved a great Nissan Z dreamer, AD, spot, Super Bowl spot in California coolers. And then when I got into the business, I saw from Shai day in New York of its famous nine next campaign, if it’s out there, it’s in here, the 9x Yellowpages, blah, blah, blah.

 

So yes, and then getting to work with Lee was, you know, just great. Just playing with playing with Michael Jordan. That’s what that was, you know, I, I read a lot. I love you know, I love the music business. I love artists. You know, I’ve a lot of, you know, Quincy Jones, I think that he was a big influence on me, just, you know, a player turn producer, which is what happens to you. And in our business, you go from, you know, writer to management. Barry Gordy from Motown, you know, when I started in, in New York as CEO, I read Barry Gordy. And I was listening to a lot of Jay Z. And what was interesting was that, you know, these were kind of pop culture factories, you know, and I said, Hey, how can we create a pop culture factory out of New York. My first boss was a big influence. Her name was Roz green. She was like one of the great copywriters in our business. She really, you know, just showed me so much about how to be a copywriter in a very funny way. Like, sometimes I would write something and show her and she’s like, this is great. Now try writing this like a writer would.

 

Eitan Chitayat  47:26

But actually, you just reminded me of something that I want to mention. So if you go to natty calm, and you go to the Guest writer series directly from the homepage, the article that you wrote Robert Schwartz for natty which was, I believe it was titled, you want to if you want to be a co try being a copywriter first, which is amazing, which I never even thought of that angle. But just like this so many interesting things about what you wrote in that article about what it takes to be a copywriter and how they can help you lead?

 

Rob Schwartz  47:54

Yeah, no, that’s, that was a good article. Thank you for that opportunity. That

 

Eitan Chitayat  47:57

was no you thank you for writing it. I’m actually going to share it again, because I just thought about it now. So she was a great influence as well.

 

Rob Schwartz  48:04

Yeah. And like I was saying earlier on earlier, my, you know, my grandparents had a big influence on me. And I feel like I honestly, I try to absorb a lot of that face. I try to lead on I try to like, you know, pay attention, you know, learn from people watch things. Listen,

 

Eitan Chitayat  48:23

one of the things that you were saying that was really interesting in whenever we speak is your output, which you haven’t talked about, by the way, which is, you make things it’s like em, I mean, okay, you’re doing everything that you’re doing. You’re leading these companies, you’re mentoring people you’re teaching you’re, you’re trying to be mentioned, just like doing good. But Rob, you you make and you make and you make you produce on on a personal level as well. You’ve got the podcast, which you know, you’ve got this book that you did you got the email book you are I know that you’re also working on if we can talk about it on on the branding for comedy Museum.

 

Rob Schwartz  49:00

Oh, yes, the National Comedy center.

 

Eitan Chitayat  49:04

Alright. Because I mean, that’s to me is another thing that you’re doing. What is that?

 

Rob Schwartz  49:09

Well, the National Comedy center is probably the most amazing museum you may ever go to, in a very unlikely place in Jamestown, New York. And Jamestown, New York is basically Cleveland, Ohio. I mean, that’s how far West it is. For those of you who can envision the state of New York and think about a map it’s it’s the furthest point west of New York on the on the way southern part of New York. And the reason why the museum was birthed there is because that is the birthplace of Lucille Ball, one of our great comedians.

 

Unknown Speaker  49:45

And comedians, comedians.

 

Rob Schwartz  49:47

No, no, no, I think you’ve got nothing. It’s a car comedian. Oh, really? Canceled culture. Yeah, you have to call them Oh, look, he’s like tackers like there’s no such thing as actresses anymore.

 

Eitan Chitayat  49:58

I didn’t mean anything bad by people. I really thought it was comedienne.

 

Rob Schwartz  50:02

Well your podcast is gonna come crashing down. We’re done.

 

Yeah, so I got involved. I did a project with the founder of Advertising Week, a guy by the name of Matt Schechner, who’s a wonderful guy. Talk about a guy who gives back wow, this guy’s incredible. We worked on the this now York Project, which was amazing. Yeah, I love to bring people back to the city of New York. And through that, he met these national comedy folks. And he came back, he said, You got to see his museum. It’s amazing. So we hopped in his Tesla, and drove seven hours and charged a few times. And we went to the comedy Museum and is amazing, because it’s got a lot of great analog stuff.

 

You will see The Larry Sanders set, you will see Rodney Dangerfield suit and red tie, you will see the actual paper, Joan Rivers has her 10 ways to deal with a heckler. All the analog stuff is there. But what’s also incredible about this museum is that it’s got all this digital interactive stuff. And it’s just done so well. And it’s so smart, and just makes you feel so good. And you could spend days there, if you like comedy, you could spend days there. I mean, one of the things that’s great is that when you go into the museum, you have a little risk chip. And you go to a screen, and they there are a few prompts, they ask a few questions. And because the museum is so vast, they’ll give you a comedy track. They’ll say, oh, you know, eaten you like topical humor, slapstick, and one liners, you should see these 10 areas of the museum. Wow. Anyway, it’s just so great. And after I went there, and you know, I grew up with comedy. I love comedy. Through Matt’s encouragement, I said, I’m gonna give them whatever time and energy I have. And let’s try to make this thing even, you know, more famous. So we’re, we’re working with them now. I don’t know what the hell we’re gonna do. But

 

Eitan Chitayat  52:05

no, so yeah, what is it? What is it like you can do an ad you can do a campaign you doing the brand? I mean, what’s

 

Rob Schwartz  52:11

plotting some things out? I put together a little team. I you know, I had a great team that I put together to help Joe Biden defeat the evil warlord, Donald Trump, with dog lovers for Joe.

 

Eitan Chitayat  52:24

And another thing that you made, there you go, um, can we just for a second for 30 seconds? Can we segue to what that was because that’s That was amazing.

 

Rob Schwartz  52:33

The world needed it. I just did not want to live in a country where Donald Trump was President. And I just had to do what I could do. What What can I do? Like, I know how to make commercials. So we made a commercial based on the insight that Trump was the first president in a very, very long time, who didn’t have a dog in the White House and people who hate dogs. You can tell a lot about a person by how they feel about a dog. And

 

Eitan Chitayat  53:00

we all know, did he hate? Does he hate dogs? Or did he just don’t have a dog? Question? Ah,

 

Rob Schwartz  53:06

he’s just not a dog person. Okay. So you know, I don’t want to, I don’t want to make anything up. I don’t believe in fake news. So he may like dogs, but he didn’t have on in the White House was not a priority. But it was a prime priority for Bush the first priority for Ronald Reagan. A priority for Bush the second priority for Bill Clinton the priority for Barack Obama. And it was a priority for the Biden’s so we just made a commercial that that talked about that, you know, no money in actual, you know, organic virality. It blew up.

 

Eitan Chitayat  53:45

It was amazing. And if people haven’t seen it just seriously, just look it up.

 

Rob Schwartz  53:49

You can see it on dogloversforJoe.com. I’m still paying for the website. So do me a favor. Please go to dogloversforJoe.com and justify my 1995 every month to keep that thing running. You will get some results. Well, yeah. So what we’ll do for the comedy center. Right now we’re just we’re just blocking it out. We have some they have some very powerful pieces in their archive. So they have they’re about to showcase all of Carl Reiners archives. Hmm, he’s amazing. So Carl Reiner. Then, of course the inventor of the Dick Van Dyke Show and director of the jerk and you know, 1000 other pieces. He’s just incredible. They got, of course, a lot of Lucy stuff. It’s the 70th anniversary of I Love Lucy. And this is very important because you know, Lucy was an incredible innovator. At a time when women weren’t allowed to be innovators. She was a pirate. She was like, Listen, this is how we’re gonna do it. This is how I want to do it. We’re gonna do three cameras.

 

You know she did you know the first show with a three camera setup. She wasn’t Incredible. So the 75th anniversary of the show and you know, and let’s not forget, she got this interracial marriage, you know who in their right mind the 50s, you know, could never have can envision, you know, a white woman marrying a person of Cuban origin. You know, she was just such an incredible rule breaker. And again, she’s doing this and whatever it is 1956 I mean, come on, you know, like, she’s a real innovator. So we have some stuff that we want to launch for Lucy that’s in the hopper. And I think my dream is and I hope you know, there are still clients listening to our conversation. A client really needs to sponsor this museum, Little Caesars, you’ve built your brand on comedy, sponsor this museum. Pepsi, you’ve done a lot of funny commercials in your time sponsor this museum. You know, any brand that is Geico, you are you are creating value through comedy, give back, celebrate comedy, and become a sponsor of this museum.

 

Eitan Chitayat  56:00

It makes sense. It’s bit of a no brainer.

 

Rob Schwartz  56:02

Yeah. And also they get, you know, a lot of people go through their, the, you know, great attendance.

 

Eitan Chitayat  56:09

You know, I don’t want to take up too much more of your time as a jockey for hours. But we’re gonna ask you two more things. And then I guess we’ll get ready for the next conversation for the people who, who are starting out in an industry, which is clearly very precious to you, and has given you personally so much and that you clearly love deeply. What would you say to people starting out in our industry? Today?

 

Rob Schwartz  56:34

I guess I would start by saying it seems really like a difficult time to be in advertising. And I think it’s, it is difficult, but it’s always been difficult. So just know that you’re not the first human to go, wow, this is hard. I think the best thing you can do starting out is, I think, contribute, like, try look for ways to contribute that.

 

That was my whole thing. You know, when I when I started, I would just, you know, where can I help? Where can I do stuff? Where can I help somebody else? I think that the times in my career where I was very inwardly looking and self centered, I was miserable. But when I was able to become part of the team, or to contribute something that that was really good. I would say the other thing, you know, if you’re a creative, and particularly if you’re a writer, this may sound kind of self evident, but you need to write stuff. Like you got to write and provide vision, I, you know, one of the stories in my life that always stuck with me, as I was working on Lexus at the time, this is out in California, I was at a place called Team One.

 

And it was a moment where Lexus was doing very good work. And we had a very difficult client, I mean, just this guy could be in the desert dying, and you can offer him just a tall glass of water. And he would just say not not now, I mean, this guy, he could not sell this guy work. And we had, I don’t know, whatever it was around seven, around eight on, you know, some launch, that was the most important launch in the history of the company. And this guy was like, No, I don’t like it, go back and do it over. I remember sitting in this conference room, everybody was just complaining. It was just the bitch session after meeting where all the work is killed. And at a certain moment, somebody said, Well, where’s the creative director was Andy, and ever looked around, and no one saw Andy. And I said, Well, let me go up to the seventh floor. Maybe he’s up there. And I remember going up to the seventh floor, wherever we were on six. I go into his office, and his back was to the door and he was typing. And I’m like, Andy, people are looking for you. What are you doing? He goes, I’m trying to sell this thing. He goes, Just tell him, you know, I’m not coming down in the meeting, I’m writing. And at that moment, the penny dropped for me. And I said, That’s it. You’re a writer, you’re creative. You solve it with the words, you solve it at the keyboard. Ever since then, no matter what the project was, whatever I’m working on. I tried to come up with a vision for it first, and I learned that that you don’t have to be Andy spade, who’s you know, a fantastic, creative person. But that’s what I learned from him and I, I’ve never forgotten it. So if you’re starting out, write stuff, leave the person with the vision on something.

 

Eitan Chitayat  59:33

I think that the wonderful thing about writing is, when you write you are committing to something. It’s very difficult to keep it for me at least to keep it in my head. You know, if I keep it in my head, I can’t massage it. I can’t finesse it. I can’t perfect it. I have to put it down. And I have to It’s like Plato, you know, you have to take it out of the box and you have to play with it. You literally have In your hands, you have to, and then you start, you start finding the vision in there, then you can start. It’s a real commitment to the craft of writing. And I think that

 

Rob Schwartz  1:00:10

I think the commitment thing you say is very important. But I also think to lower the barrier for people to writing is also dumping. Oh, sure, you are dumping what is in your head. There’s a fantastic book, I urge anybody in our business in particular, whether your account person or a writer, read this book, it’s called the artists way. Hmm, it’s my name, Julia Cameron, the artists way. And she’s got a practice in the book called, and it says it’s a journaling practice. But it’s essentially write three pages, wake up in the morning, write three pages, don’t worry about your grammar, don’t worry about your handwriting. And don’t type it, you have to write it, just empty your mind. And I often tell people, you don’t have to do it as a journalistic practice. I remember, you know, a strategist stuck on a brief. And I just said, Go write three pages. And he’s like, why is it just just write three pages. And he wrote three pages, he brought it back to me. And I said, there’s a strategy right there, page two here, and I circled it. And what it did was it allowed this planner to just empty his mind. He had too much information. Yeah. So between commitment and I think I like to call it dumping just dump it on the page.

 

Eitan Chitayat  1:01:28

Yeah, I call it when I am when I’m working with my with my writers, I call it like getting the crap out. Like, there’s nothing wrong. You know, there’s gold in the crap that the last question that I have for you could be a 32nd answer in 15 seconds. It could also be three hours. So what are you doing next? Meaning, I don’t mean after TBWA I’m not I didn’t mean it that like that. But like what, what’s next for you?

 

Rob Schwartz  1:01:54

I think it’s gonna be a 32nd answer. Fine. I don’t know. I don’t know. I’ve never been one of these people who have been like, oh, in five years. I want to do this. I don’t know. I think what’s next is figuring out what’s next. That’s what’s gonna be what’s next.

 

Eitan Chitayat  1:02:10

Rob? As usual, love chatting with you. Thank you.

 

Rob Schwartz  1:02:15

Thank you. That was excellent.