Meet B&T Melbourne Bootcamp Mentor: Ogilvy’s David Ponce de Leon

Meet B&T Melbourne Bootcamp Mentor: Ogilvy’s David Ponce de Leon
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B&T Bootcamp is coming to Melbourne! Hooray!

In the lead up to this not-to-be-missed event, B&T interviewed some of the amazing mentors you’ll hear from on the day, and their thoughts on all things media, marketing and advertising.

B&T Bootcamp Melbourne takes place on 3rd  September at the Bayview Eden in Melbourne. Visit the website to learn more here or grab your tickets now!

Now, hear from David Ponce de Leon – ECD, Ogilvy Melbourne – one of our incredible mentors you’ll be hearing from on the day.

David began his career as a designer, moving into art direction and honing his craft at agencies ranging from large multinationals to small independent shops.

In the past 20 years, David has been awarded more than two hundred times on all major national and international award shows with work for brands like AAMI, adidas, Cadbury, Heinz, Mars, Metro, Nintendo, Seek, Schweppes, Suzuki, Tigerair, Whiskas, WorkSafe and the Victorian Government.

This includes multiple ‘Agency of the Year’ titles for agencies under his creative stewardship.

For the past decade, David has also been active in training the next generation of Australian creative talent through his role leading the Melbourne AWARD School program and most recently as the head of ADMA Creative School.

Check out our interview with David below!

How vital are young people to the marketing communications industry?

Very. Young talent are extremely important for any industry. They come fresh into the game, still naïve, not jaded or cynical. And full of new ideas, energy, dreams and expectations! I also find young talent more experimental, braver and more pioneering in regards to new mediums.

What can the industry do to attract and retain young talent?

We need to make the marketing communications industry an attractive option for the best creative and analytical minds out there. Set realistic expectations that don’t lead to disappointment. Provide clear career paths to slowly but surely move upwards. And (find out a) way to offer more than just money to retain them. I still believe this industry is one of the most challenging but most fun industries anyone can choose as a career path. But somehow, it all became way too serious and we forgot to have fun. We need to bring fun back.

What’s the biggest challenge young people face in the marketing communications industry?

I think the external perception of the industry ends up clashing with the reality of their day-to-day job. There is still a bit of a ‘Mad Men’ meets Logies faux glamour perception attached to our industry and the reality of having to sit down in front of spreadsheets and PowerPoint screens for hours on end proves too much of a disconnect for some of our new arrivals.

How can young people avoid ‘burn-out’ and create a better work-life balance while working in the industry?

I think workplaces and leaders need to be more involved and more aware about this issue and implement wellbeing policies that can help young people find a balance that’s right for them. On an individual level, perspective is very important, the fact is ours is not a life or death industry, so be easy on yourself.

How important is ‘passion’ in the industry?

It’s not just important. It’s indispensable. Without it, I believe, most people won’t go very far. You must love what you do, pure and simple. Passion trumps talent, anytime.

If you could re-do the start of your career, what would you change? What wouldn’t you change?

To be honest, I wouldn’t change a thing. Everything I’ve done or has happened to me in the last 20 years was meant to happen in exactly the same way for me to be where I am now. And I am extremely happy, thank you very much.

What’s one piece of advice you’d give young people starting out in the industry?

Focus on the journey, not on the destination. If you get there too quickly, or as quickly as you would like to, your mind will find a new challenge and it all starts all over again. But if you focus on the journey, you’ll enjoy it one day at a time and I believe that ultimately will make your own landmarks more fulfilling and more satisfying. Enjoy the journey! And don’t forget to look out of the window once in a while!

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