Send Us Your Best Tales of Work-Life Balance Gone Bad

By Patrick Coffee 

Happy Friday to all and to all a good weekend. We’d like to discuss something serious for a moment.

You guys probably saw last week’s story about the death of a young Ogilvy Philippines employee who purportedly passed after working overtime while suffering from pneumonia.

His was not the first such tragedy to garner headlines in recent months and years: There were the 2013 deaths of Ogilvy China and Y&R Indonesia creatives and—of course—the suicide that led to the resignation of Dentsu CEO Tadashi Ishii.


The story blew up, as these things sometimes do, on social last weekend with thousands sharing their own tales of going above, beyond, and then beyond some more to serve the client.

But we all know this phenomenon is not limited to the Asia Pacific region. And people have reached out to us over the past week to say that they, too, have gone through the same thing in the States.

As we did last summer with a post on age discrimination in the agency world, we’d like to put the call out.

Tell us about your own experiences: The times you sacrificed your personal life, your psychological well-being and even your physical health for work. The nights when you were this close to saying fuck it and quitting the industry altogether before it pulled you back in, Godfather III style. (This can apply to people who really did leave the ad business as well.)

Use the tip box or email Anonymity is guaranteed if you so choose, though details like your age and title at the time can provide critical context.

So think about it, and send us your worst.