What I Learned This Year: Godfrey Q’s Patrick Godfrey

By Egotist / /

“I’m gonna go do something different.”

Those are weird, jarring words to hear from your creative and business partner of the past 15 years. Even when you knew they were coming. It was in the parking lot of our biggest client, where we had just presented a big new campaign to great reviews. It was March, and our shared agency had just turned 10.

I was one of the few that knew Q had ordained as a Buddhist priest a few months prior. And I was all too aware that he and I were headed in completely different directions. Neither of us were enjoying working together anymore.

And in 30 days, Q was gone.

Over the next two weeks, most of our clients at the shop’s two largest accounts would also be “reorganized” out of their jobs. A family member would be in the ICU with a traumatic brain injury. Our staff were extremely anxious, and rightly so. We had a big lease on a space we didn’t like anymore and expiring client contracts.

I was telling friends and family that maybe it was time for a sabbatical. I was telling employees it was going to be OK. I didn’t know what else to say; I was quite literally going crazy. So I worked on that.

One day, I woke up and realized I was excited to get to the office.

Over time, we cemented new relationships, at clients both old and new. We sold and produced some great work. We found a new space. We brought in great new people, including an inspirational ECD. We changed how we work. And we came out the other side stronger.

In 2013, I learned to ask for help.

I learned that what we do is a lot more fun than most jobs.

I learned that we do can make a real difference.

I learned that doing what you believe to be right generates good outcomes (eventually).

I learned that change is terrifying.

I learned that it’s not all about me.

I learned that I really want to do this.

2013 can kiss my ass. But I’m looking forward to 2014.


Patrick Godfrey is Founder and Head of Strategy and Godfrey Q


  1. Slumworm December 20, 2013