excelleration (n.) – The act of progressive achievement; the constant movement from great success to greater successes (taken from “excel” and “acceleration”).
This is a real word. At least when it comes to my brand, it is. At the end of Creative Week, I was at The One Show. The One Show.You know, the award show where all the awards are pencils, and the winners are decked out in Nikes and the like.
I was surrounded by talent, immersed in a gaggle of winners.
The best part?
We worked hard over the semester, understanding what agencies are all about. To be there – knowing that it’ll be us in a few years if we play our cards right – was magical.
The bad news?
But I look at all that my personal brand has accomplished this year and I smile.
3.1 GPA in my first semester at City College. Being elected president of my school’s AAF (American Advertising Federation) chapter. Meeting the giants of today’s Madison Avenue at different events.
Most importantly, this:
I’m here – writing to you as a proud member of the Creative Week Social Club.
I thought about all of this – every move I’ve made, every success upon success upon greater success. It’s like gorging a Baconator Double from Wendy’s:
A lot to take in, but so much enjoyment once you’re finished.
I’m not finished. For now, I’m resting. I’m taking a break to really relax and see the crops of my hustle. I can remember Neisha Tweed, senior copywriter at Publicis Modem, telling me months ago when I was applying to MAIP (Multicultural Advertising Intern Program) exactly how I should approach it:
“By any means necessary.”
Her words were in reference to finding a way to wow with my application in ways that my grades couldn’t. I took it to heart, those four words, and I’ve pushed beyond what I thought were my limits. I built my brand out of it:
Aspiring for the greatest success, connecting with beneficial people and opportunities, and not just excelling, but excellerating.
It’s about the next big thing.
Actually, in the creative world, it’s always about the next big thing.
Ad people always say that you’re looked at for your last campaign. I’m sure that in the fashion, media and most other creative industries at large, staying current is your livelihood.
We mirror and shape culture. Might as well make things better for ourselves, yes?
But success is never just about one person.
So before I conclude this letter, I’d like to shout-out everyone involved in the first rungs up the ladder of my climb to the top of the advertising industry. It’s said that revenge is a dish best served cold. We’re in the success game, however, and I believe that it’s best shared amongst those out there winning with you.
- My friends Geri and Bibi for being on this grind with me.
- My fellow Creative Week Socialites for keeping me inspired.
- The members of my school’s AAF chapter for giving me a sense of leadership and purpose.
- My MAIP friends for reminding me that I’ll be on your level soon.
- The One Club and the 4As for giving me something high to aim for.
- Every mentor that I’ve secretly claimed. In the words of Johnny Carson, “I’m learning, I’m learning!”
Most importantly, I have to shower you, the reader, with thanks.
I drive to the basket because you’re driving, too. I want to see us all at the winner’s circle – Indy 500-style – with our milk bottles and trophies and portfolios and cheering crowds.
I know it’s hard sometimes, but take these six words of advice:
“Keep calm and make it happen.”