Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Five minutes with our CFUO.

Ad Aged: So you're a CFUO? Tell me, what do those initials stand for?

CFUO: They stand for what I do. I fuck things up and I fail up. I’m the agency’s Chief Failing Up Officer.

Ad Aged: What is it that you do?

CFUO: I wait till the last second.

Ad Aged: And...

CFUO: And I make enormous changes.

Ad Aged: That’s it?

CFUO: It’s not easy making enormous changes that make utterly no sense. 
They’re 1) capricious 2) contradictory and 3) constant.

Some people can give you two of the three. I can deliver the whole shebang.

Ad Aged: In other words, you bring chaos to bear?

CFUO: That’s only half of what I do. Once chaos has its way, once it ruins creative work, 
disillusions everyone and drives clients to seek new agencies, once disaster happens, that’s when 
spring into action.

Ad Aged: And what do you do then?

CFUO: Well, the first thing I do is issue proclamations. Mostly about how our abject failure is
really a new beginning. How our loss is really our gain. How small is better than large and foul is 
better than fair.

Ad Aged: Positively Shakespearean.

CFUO: Then comes the coup de grace.

Ad Aged: And that is?

CFUO: I get promoted.

Ad Aged: Promoted? After causing disaster?

CFUO: That’s why I’m the Chief Failing Up Officer. It’s not a disaster I’ve caused. It’s a growth 
reversal opportunity.

Ad Aged: Any final thoughts?

CFUO: Yes. Tomorrow is my last day as CFUO. Next week I’ll start a new job, turning around yet 
another agency.

Remember my personal motto: nothing succeeds like failure.

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