“The play was a great success but the audience was a dismal failure.” George Bernard Shaw

Sometimes you’ve got no-one to blame but yourself. As Ape reaches 10, we reflect on one or two such incidents. But they say that success is never as funny as failure so here goes… 10 banana skins from the last decade.

1. Don Draper doesn’t use the internet

Words to make you shudder. When they come from a client, responding to an email you meant to send to a colleague, suggesting he give it to ’em straight, like the famous Mad Men character.

2. Clients and the 5 second rule

It works for kids and at home but when you drop the biscuits on the floor, don’t put them back on the plate and offer them to clients. They’ll say no thank you. And so would you.


3. Spell heck

Check it, check it and check it again. Especially for typos. In the company name. On the first page of your presentation for a rebrand. When you’re talking to the MD…


4. Greeks bearing gifts

If a potential employee looks too good to be true, they probably are.
Hire slowly and fire quickly. We learnt that.

5. You can never be too clear

When you spec sample manufacturing overseas, be specific, very specific. For when the sample comes back, the text is illegible and the response is: ‘you didn’t say you needed it to be straight.’


6. Choose your photographer

Always spec the suppliers and projects very carefully… Your highly regarded fashion photographer will only shoot van drivers and Cornish pasties the once.

7. Surprise portfolios

And it all looked so promising, until… If only we read the link before we clicked. One click, one quick flash of extreme adult content that can’t be unseen. What were they thinking?!


8. It’s a rip offfff

The client said they loved it, and then it went quiet. For ages. Alarm bells. And then you see the work, except you didn’t do it but you know it’s yours. Only happened three times in 10 years. Are we bitter? Damn right.

9. Idea health check

When you pitch an idea for a company health check programme featuring a portly man on a running machine to a man like the man in the picture… Move on quickly.


10. He ate the worm!

Taking clients to a hip hop night in a dingy venue under the arches, drinking mezcal and eating the worm. Not a good look on a Tuesday night. We’re older now.

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