Having grown up in advertising--my father and my uncle Sid were in the business from the 40s and the 50s on--one of the things I liked about it when I was a kid was that it wasn't a profession.
My father (and my uncle) weren't like lawyers or doctors or accountants. They could dress funkier. Speak in more florid language and live life with a spontaneity and elan that their corporate neighbors couldn't.
Now, of course, advertising has become a profession. Decisions are the result of many endless and meandering meetings. And we speak a language that's arcane and incestuous that people outside of our guild can't fathom.
The things that at one time made advertising a great job have today disappeared. We are mechanical men worried about best practices. We labor in the pixel mines hauling 16 tons a day till we grow older and deeper in debt.
Advertising is not a science, though there are parts that can be scientificized.
Advertising has a huge element of gut and luck.
Someone derives something that strikes a chord.
The professionals don't have what it takes to succeed.
So they professionalize things.
They rewrite the rules so they can prevail.
And now they do prevail.
And things suck.