Features

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5 minutes with... Simon Learman - McCann London

Published

Will Pyne, Holler

Tell us what you do for a living and who you work for?
ECD of McCann London

What does that involve?
Shepherding, motivating, inspiring, selling.

How did you get started in the industry?
Saatchi and Saatchi. It was a brutal but an invaluable apprenticeship.

What would you be doing if you weren't doing that?
Toughie. Well, I was going to be a pharmacist before I fell into advertising, but I also harbored ambitions to be an actor. What's so interesting about the converging nature of our industry is that it's possible to apply your skills to so many fields: directing, painting, designing, writing…

What's your all-time favourite piece of creative work?
Hmm. Don't want to seem obtuse but I am going through a Pierre Soulages phase at the moment. He's a wonderful abstract expressionist painter. I tend to respond to stuff viscerally. Oh, if you want me to cite some advertising creative work, blimey, so many to choose from: Levis' ‘Creek', or ‘Drugstore' would be up there. The Guardian “Points of View'. It's an endless list, really.

What do you love about your job?
Anything is possible, it's different everyday, nurturing young talent, bringing ideas to life, solving problems, and meeting brilliant people.

What do you hate about your job?
Meeting the occasional pessimists. Not enough time/too much time.

What's your favourite website?
Let's see, today it's The Cool Hunter.

If you could give one piece of advice, what would it be?
Be a sponge (cliché, but true). Be brilliant. Learn to deal with rejection. Err, that's three, sorry.

Where can people follow you online?
McCann's Blog
Twitter: @SimonLearman (ooh, I'd better start Tweeting then!)

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