Product Design
  • Interview Excerpt: Toby Talbot, Managing Partner, Assignment:, Auckland

    Check out the work of Toby Talbot.

    How do portfolios come to you?

    [ … ]

    Honestly, if I responded to every single email I got about a job, I’d be an HR director, not a creative director. Since joining, I have set up a creative internship program called “The Farm.” Nic and Andy draw up a shortlist of the best teams out there, and every three months we revolve our intake. Three new teams come in. Three teams leave. If a team can make themselves indispensable to the agency in that time, we keep them on.

    [ … ]

    What do you look for in a student book?

    Consistency is really important to me. Start with your best ideas and maintain that
    standard. Easier said than done, I know. But too many times I see a great idea first up, then realize three campaigns on that that idea was either a fluke or someone else had it.

    You want to see ideas that stay with you long after you see them. Usually because they’re so stupidly simple and contain a powerful emotional truth that you think, “Wow, why hasn’t someone else thought of that before? More importantly, why haven’t I thought of that before?” Jealousy is a wonderful motivator in our business.

    I will also tell you what I don’t look for. There’s an awful lot of “cr-app” ideas out there. I went to the Cream show at Mother the other night. Lots of apps on lots of tablets. Barely any proper ideas among them. Nine times out of ten, they were just silly gimmicks. Apps can cost a shitload of money to develop. Clients need a good reason to invest in one, which is why they rarely do. These are the commercial realities that students need to understand. It’s tiresome that they plainly don’t.

    Toby Talbot

    Toby Talbot

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