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June, 2024

Can fast be good?

“We could do with a few more weeks!”  Yes, but what if you don’t have a few more weeks, can fast still be good? Yes, so long as you realise the one thing more important than the time you have is what you do with it. At Milk+Honey we’ve created a global campaign in just 10 weeks and delivered a new car launch from pitch to despatch in only 6 weeks. Here’s a few suggestions to help you get there quickly but remain friends along the way. 

Don’t panic. A lot of fear can be bad. Don’t freak out, yes the clock is ticking but the sky’s not falling so don’t start throwing hospital passes around. A calm mind is a clear mind, soooooo take a breath and be the cool head in a hot room. 

Do panic: A bit of fear can be good. It sharpens the mind and puts a rocket up everyone. The key here isn’t to keep reminding everyone how much time they don’t got, but rather make the most of the time you do got, so get off the back foot and onto the front foot.  

Think less: While it’s often good to have time to think things through, it can also lead to overthinking, which can be the kiss of death for any project. You might not have the time to write the perfect brief but there should be enough time for a good brief. Workshop it with your agency if you want but don’t expect them to start with nothing. We’re okay if you only come to us with your problem, just make sure your problem is clearly defined.

Trust more: When time is the enemy, instinct is your friend. The advantage of less time is that you have to rely on that thing you often don’t trust enough. Your gut. Most of the time it’s right anyway. One of my favourite phrases I’ve heard is “neck down advertising”, for exactly that reason. 

What you need: Make it clear what you want and need, there’s no room for ambiguity or mind reading. When you’re short on time you need to get it right, first time.  

What they need: Yes, agency folks can work wonders but they aren’t magicians, so if you can’t give them more time ask them what would help them pull the rabbit out the hat. One thing that really helps us is fast approvals, so do everyone a favour and make yourself available, and if you can’t appoint someone else who can be. Friction creates friction, so keep it smooth. 

Two teams: You still need two teams. You can’t expect the agency to do your job because there’s no time and you still have to set them up the best you can to do theirs’. Equally they can’t use the ‘we’ve got no time’ excuse. Everyone still needs to do what they do, they just need to do it quicker. 

One team: Pressure is best when it’s shared. Even though the players should stay in position, sometimes the most refreshing thing about being up against it is that you rely on each other more so there’s no them and us, just us. This is where working with a collaborative and more experienced team pays dividends, because together you can cut through the nonsense, have honest chats and get to good solutions faster. 

Options can be good: If there’s time to see 2 or 3 broadstroke ideas upfront, great, but when you pick one, commit to it and back that horse like it’s your pick for the Melbourne Cup. Don’t start dithering and asking what your horse would look like if it had 3 legs or plays the guitar. 

Options can be bad: Sometimes the people you won’t meet are some of the most important ones working on the project. I’m talking about the designers, editors and other craft people. Ask them to do less things well, not more things badly because, and this is the most important point of all, no one will remember how much time you had, only how good the outcome was.

At Milk+Honey, you benefit from our full commitment and involvement at every stage of the journey. Unlike traditional agencies, our founders and senior team members are hands-on, ensuring that you receive the highest level of creative output and strategic guidance no matter how pressing the project.