All Work, No Life?

Posted by Neely Tabor

Work-life balance and the advertising world haven’t always gone hand in hand. The “all work, no life” conundrum has been the topic of heated industry discussions, even recently being called a crisis.

When my own family was becoming three, I definitely questioned whether I’d be able to keep up the pace at work and remember finding this study showing that statistically women with more children are more productive at work, which is quite encouraging.

Fast forward two-and-a-half years of working-mom life and add another human into the mix, and I’m thankful to say that for me and plenty of my fellow foggy-eyed peers around here parenthood and agency life are not mutually exclusive.

In fact, from 2014 to 2017 alone GS&F grew by a total of 14 fiery girls and 7 excitable boys. To celebrate all the growth in the agency, we recently invited our littles in for an afternoon of “fun” (read complete chaos) and put our newest additions to work.

This glimpse into our ever-growing roster isn’t to say we’re claiming to have the whole work-life balance equation solved. But it does represent our belief that it is not only possible to work in advertising AND have a life, but crucial. And this isn’t a new HR-driven tactic to keep Millennials happy. It’s a core value that runs deep in the agency’s history. When talking through the subject with one of our owners, Roland Gibbons, he noted that from the time he joined GS&F, some 30 years ago, there’s always been a belief that well-rested employees who can prioritize home life pay dividends. Happy people make enthusiastic employees and inspired, energetic teams lead to great work.

It doesn’t matter whether those non-work hours are filled with diaper changes and glitter glue projects or Netflix binges and spontaneous road trips. What’s essential is maintaining the margin to get out there and do life, be a human, and actually experience the world where we’re all hoping our work makes an impact.

This is what drives our commitment to constantly pursue a culture that discourages the workaholic mentality in favor of thoughtful prioritization, intentional focus and keeping space for personal inspiration – the very thing that’s crucial to producing great work in the first place.