18. W+K: making a good company great

A "Weidenism" that was put up on a wall at the W+K office in Portland. "Fail Harder"

What makes a good advertising agency into a great advertising agency? Camaraderie. There is probably no other agency that gets this better than Weiden + Kennedy. While praising W+K is second nature for most University of Oregon advertising students (They got their start up in Portland), can you really blame us? W+K just seems to do it right.

W+K has produced some pretty epic and well known campaigns throughout the year including their work with Old Spice and Nike, but what happens when that good fortune hits a rough patch? Well it has never kept them down, thanks to its cofounder Dan Weiden who has been praised for the importance he places on his employees, above and beyond traditional means. One of those rough patches reared its head just a few weeks ago when W+K lost its contract with target and had to lay off 40 employees. In a world where layoffs seem to be part of the everyday rabble, W+K proves once again that they still care about the people who have worked with them over the years.

Shortly after the layoffs you could find a link on the W+K blog that sent you over to iworkedatwk.com. If you clicked yes once you got there you would be asked to fill out a form with some contact information. While this may seem simple enough it definitely speaks to the fact that even after you leave W+K, they still value you as a person. W+K shows the kind of progressive thinking that goes way beyond what a normal company would ever do and that is what makes the work they do so worthwhile.

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