Hugh Mcleod drew this. It appears in Seth Godin’s book The Dip. And it’s very true.
Except in advertising. At least the creative side. At least in agencies that care more about producing great work than about politics.
Creative advertising really is a meritocracy. If you have the best ideas, you get recognized. And the more you’re recognized, the more control you have over where you work, with whom, and on what accounts. That’s not to say you get a blank check, and can call your clients idiots. But being in demand gives you a little more control over your destiny.
So if you find yourself in this king/pawn situation, it’s probably because someone isn’t focused on the work.