5 + 8
An advertising, branding and creative strategy agency in Houston, Texas

Words + Internet

I can't handle the truth

Recently, I have been digesting a steady diet of “feedback is everything“ from my various podcasts and audio books. All the gurus were goating me into sending out the dreaded customer survey. “They” tell us how feedback is essential and critical for positive growth. And, I am sure they are right. I know they are right. But, I also know it’s probably right to harvest my own rainwater in sustainable tanks and bathe my children to lower my carbon footprint. But, that sounds like a pain in the ass and I don’t want to do it.

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Should work be fun?

I wonder this often. I mean, it’s work after all. And work, simply put, is producing something so you can provide something. That’s not exactly a tagline for a trampoline park, but work today is not shoveling coal. Work today is air-conditioned, safe, and fueled by gourmet coffee and that one lady with the jar of M&Ms. Our work environment has improved in the last century. In 1919, some of the top jobs listed were woodworking, tobacco manufacturing, and textiles. The only place I’ve ever encountered a textile is in a history book. What the F is a textile anyway? Is it fabric, tile, corduroy? I guess it’s one of life’s great mysteries that may never be answered.

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Adam FaustComment
Your mission statement suuuuucks

I knew something was wrong when I had to repeatedly google the difference between a vision statement and a mission statement. That is especially concerning since I am paid to write said statements for clients. I am comfortable with that confession because anyone in a leadership position has encountered this confusion.

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Adam FaustComment
This plus this equals awesomeness

I was feeling negative, insecure and overly concerned about what others think. I lost my confidence so I started writing that first paragraph of negativity. Every jotted line of self-serving melodrama made me feel better. I was able to release it from my brain and see how it limits me and locks me in. Negativity and insecurity paralyze creativity.

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Adam Faust Comments
Pretty Damn Good

I didn’t know what to write about. I have a list of ideas scribbled down that say things like “Failure is so hot right now“ to “Oh sh*t my wife was right“ to “That jackass looks just like me.“ But I just couldn’t get myself moving on any of them. And then I realized today is the unofficial first day of 5+8 . So how about a list of my six most remarkable missteps? I don’t do enough lists. They’re so easy to write and read. I think because the numbers give us clear direction on where we’re going and when this thing will be over. Here goes everything:

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Adam Faust Comments
Better.

We must do better. I assume most agency leadership worries about if they are serving their clients well. But, worry is wasteful and it only zaps our energy. Instead, it’s time we go on the offensive.

When asked when to hire an agency to help you, the unapologetic and unrelenting entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk responded, “I wouldn’t hire an agency.* Because all agencies do is work really hard to not get fired.” That gave me chills. I heard that two years ago and it has remained with me. It’s like a pebble stuck in the sole of my shoe that is ever so slightly distracting me from an otherwise pleasant walk.

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Adam Faust Comments
The Most Random Gift Guide in Ever

Last year, I wrote a Christmas Letter giving an update on all things 5 + 8. I love any opportunity to talk about our company and our people. In lieu of lines of embarrassing extolling, I thought I’d let everyone get to know our team through their favorite things. Introducing our first (and maybe last) Annual Gift Guide. Hopefully the following will spur some good gift ideas, and maybe give you a little insight into our growing team. With out further adieu, the 5 + 8 Gift Guide written in the words of someone other than me…

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Adam Faust Comments
A partner makes everything slower, riskier and vastly more complicated

I have spoken to several agency owners who started with a partner and it eventually it fizzled. Or maybe it exploded? Frankly, I think I could have built up this company faster without Jeff. I think I could have made more money without a partner (turns out you have share the moola when you have a partner). I never needed a partner. I didn’t even want a partner. I just wanted to partner with him.

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Adam Faust Comment
Asking your team how they're feeling is pointless

We don’t tell people how we feel. We don’t tell our kids we had a crap day, we hide from our spouses when we don’t get our bonus and we definitely don’t tell our bosses when we’re discontent. Not because we’re fibbers, but because we’re protecting ourselves or our loved ones from something potentially worse. So, when you ask your employee in passing or even in an intimate sit-down, don’t expect them to tell you the truth. However, if you’re vigilant, they will likely show you the truth.

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