An officer and a gentleman in today's Mad Men world

It's not impossible, but it is difficult to find a gentleman in today's world of Mad Men – our world of advertising, media and communications. It's a man-eat-dog-eat-dog world, and a constant elevator up and down the food chain. A revolving door where today's ad man needs to come out in front of you even if he was behind you when you got in.

An officer? A guy who leads from the front? Takes the bullet? Calls the medics and stays with you? One who greets the day early, surveying the day ahead. Making sure the platoons are ready to roll. And that the men are fed, their stomachs full of fuel, their minds alert, and their spirits enthused and energized. A mentor, a general, but then, a soldier first.

My hats off to the guy, who stands up when you enter his office – regardless whether you are man or woman ( but particularly if you are a woman). And greets you honestly, shakes your hand, makes you feel you are welcome.

One who always holds the car door open, asks you which floor you need to have the button pressed for in a lift, and remembers your name. Every time.

One who unashamedly is a doting father – and who takes a day off to fish, surf, go wadi-bashing, whatever with his son. And one who celebrates the arrival of a new baby with more than just a facebook post and a "status update" – the joy on face so meaningful. So reflective of that wonderful (now on pinterest) quote from the Nobel laureate Tagore "Every child comes with the message that God is not yet discouraged of man..."

One who is equally at ease with the younger  and the elder – nurturing both – one with compassion, care and concern when needed,  the other with respect and appreciation of experience.

One who is original without being obnoxious, true without being tyrannical, and principled without being paranoid.

The other bits of leadership in our world of advertising (or is it 'humankind' now?) are a given. You know, about being a good presenter, a pitch winner, a people person, a creative strategist, a business man,  every day resumé stuff. These are must-haves. It's the bit about being a well-mannered, thoughtful, compassionate and understanding human being that makes all the difference.

Sasan Saeidi, managing director at FP7, UAE... take a bow.


This is a nicely written piece, although I do not see a connection to Mad Men. Don Draper may have been a mentor, but was also a arrogant ad man. This more on a Officer and a Gentleman, yes. If we do have leaders in the industry in Dubai, who are like this, ayn taamal?


Post a Comment