For many ad industry staffers, the Coronavirus-forced lockdown hasn’t just been about adjusting to the quirks of remote work, but also having to suddenly juggle three full-time roles as parent, teacher and executive.
For the children of those parents, the lockdown has opened a rare window into what their mums and dads actually do for a living.
Digiday asked seven brave advertising executives to take on another temporary new role – interviewer – and ask their kids what their parents’ jobs entail.
Such is the unpredictable nature of kids, their answers range from adorable at one end of the scale – “I want to work with Daddy” – to devastatingly blunt at the other – “I think she should work harder.” And ad execs’ children appear to have cottoned on to the notion that all they really do all day is make lots and lots of phone calls…
Agnes (age 4) and Kitty (6) interviewed by their mom Helen James, Managing Director of creative agency Crispin Porter Bogusky in London
What does mummy do for a job?
Agnes: She makes things that people see. Her job is quite tippy-tappy. She types on computers all day and talks on the phone to everyone.
Kitty: She puts adverts in places. I’ve seen lots of them about boring things. I did see Duolingo, and that one was good – oh but that was Daddy’s advert not Mummy’s. [Editor’s note: James’s partner is Rob Ward, chief strategy officer at competitor agency, And Rising]. Oh, she also puts things on screens.
What is the best thing about mummy’s job?
Kitty: We get lots of sweeties from June [Frangue, head of design at CPB].
Agnes: Playing the cupcake game, and Duolingo. [Again, this is James’s husband’s ad].
Would you like to do mummy’s job when you get older?
Agnes: No, it’s not as exciting as other jobs. Like keeping the flowers and the bees healthy and looking after the planet.
Kitty: No, I want to be an explorer and a rockclimber.
What’s the worst thing about mummy’s job?
Agnes: She doesn’t get much time to play with us, or pick us up from the black gate. [School, in other words].
How could mummy do her job better?
Kitty: She could work a bit slower, and she should take more breaks. Or, she could change to be a doctor or vet, and help people.
Agnes: I think she should work harder.
This article was originally posted in Digiday.