I always suggest they look at the company’s current work first.
Not the stuff from years ago.
Or from an office in the network, whose brilliance they’re claiming as their own.
But the work from the office you want to work at.
By people who still work there and you think are great.
If you like it.
The chances are you’ll like their culture and they’ll like you.
But aim high.
Don’t take the first job you get offered out of college because you need the money.
Keep living off beans and sleeping on floors, till you get the very best job you can.
The one that’s right for you.
Not your Mum.
Or your bank balance.
Or a headhunter.
Otherwise, you’ll waste years muddling along on average briefs.
You won’t be able to get work out that’ll get you into the better agencies.
The same can be said for when you’re in a permanent job.
Cultures change and agencies live off past glories.
So if you’re not feeling it, don’t moan about the old days.
Try and make it work or move.
At Google, if you don’t like your boss, you can go and work on another team without their permission.
They understand a company is only as good as their people.
And I’ve always found that creatives shine brightest when they feel the love and are empowered to do their thing.