by Alexandre Ravagnani
Who would have thought that we would live like this, unable to interact with people, without our usual freedom, our right to come and go. It seems that the more we evolve, the more complex the world becomes and I have stopped trying to understand it.
At the end of each day of the week, I realize how productive that day was and even with all the complexity of a home, the boys' video classes, homework and of course, housework, I realize that the day pays off, and a lot. After we started to enter this new life routine and we left the strangeness of it aside, or better, after we embraced that strangeness, I notice how we are beings that adapt and mold ourselves to any ecosystem, even the weirdest ones like this pandemic. And I do not want to complain. We are privileged to have a roof, family, food, and we cannot whine about our situation.
However, back to our ability to adapt, and to the modus operandi of life, the bad becomes the new OK, which becomes the new routine. And as always, I try to get something out of a situation instead of thinking that there is some conspiracy theory, and looking at work and the main activity that fills the day (and part of the night too), I see that we can be much more focused and work with less dispersion and distractions. Suddenly, overnight, being connected became a survival strategy, and working remotely ended up not seeming that remote, and people even started interacting more, and producing even better results.
My creative team at Repense is reasonably big, and between the offices in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, we are about 25 people working in squad format. A beautiful name, one that brought more than anything, organization, and when we practically stopped going to the agency overnight, the organization was done and we simply continued to work in the groups already formed and for the same determined clients. In other words, there was no sudden transition and we were already sufficiently technologically organized for this moment. But what impressed me most was that the team started to work like a clock. The deadlines are being met and we are still being more proactive. In fact, this intensified, and even before there were demands from our clients for the new situation, the teams themselves started to embrace the cause and see the opportunity to bring more relevance and purpose to their deliveries and ideas. If we can make a difference, the time is now. And without opportunism or unreasonable ideas that focus only on awards. The goal now is to help, think about others and have a job with purpose, and that is priceless for a creative mind.
We often ask ourselves about the legacy of our work and now it is very clear and defined. When we realize that everyone is in the same boat, it is
much easier to put ourselves in and understand the situation, and we realize that the whole world turns counterclockwise, that a bad action here impacts the other side too, that a community neighboring your neighborhood without access to education will also affect you and everyone around you, and vice versa, a few with a lot of access to things will also affect those who have access to almost nothing.
And the result of all of this? In addition to the desire to leave this situation well and healthy, I firmly believe that we will have a united world, more focused on the whole than on the individual, and our work as creative beings and advertisers will also be to continue to spark in our customers and their brands a mindset that is a little more egalitarian, a mindset that looks more to those around us. Less competition from brands for the customer and more competition from brands for the causes they will adopt.
Less concern about that millionaire production filmed in the Dubai desert and more concern about not zeroing out the budget to also leave for the social causes. Advertising will continue. Price war and competitiveness too. However, we will come out of this different and transformed. We will question more the futilities that surround us and we will put things much more into perspective.
Maybe Brazilian's proximity and warmth will never be the same again. That habit of hugging your friend, of greeting everyone with a kiss or two, that big table with our group of friends, family lunches on Sundays. The intention to do these things and the feeling of missing our friends will still be there. But we will find other things within ourselves, we will discover ourselves to be even better, and overcome ourselves. The truth is that we will suffer less if we see this as a rite of passage to arrive at something better.
The technology barrier is being overcome without great suffering and suddenly we have overcome it without great obstacles. I see it from my mother, who was never one of the most connected people I know, and ended up being forced to be alone at home, without her housekeeper or children and friends around her, and started using FaceTime as she used the landline, or downloading apps like she zapped with the TV remote. She and so many other people have come to be connected with technologies that really help them through the pandemic moment, consuming services never before accessed or desired.
For this and many other reasons, our return will be different. Not only will our work have changed, but we will also have changed profoundly within us. In addition, I believe that this is really a moment of transition to this new world that we were slowly preparing for.
And to mention again our professions and our work partners, I bet that we will be able to start working more from home, accept more adversity and value more our creative power in order to help brands be more relevant and serve new consumer desires that are beginning to emerge. Each one asking the other to assume their social role. Even from a distance, I created a much stronger bond with my team and my peers than at the agency, complicity speaks louder and everyone is trying to do their part in the best possible way. Together and stronger, but always rethinking life.