Not long ago, we noticed our office manager/office Mom Shawna carrying little colored bags around the office. She stopped at various desks, eventually reaching everyone in the building. We looked inside the bags to find Altoids, bottles of mouthwash, toothbrushes, toothpaste and even deodorant. Maybe it was common courtesy. Maybe it was her way of telling us that some us might need help with — shall we say — our *aromatic* qualities after 16+ hours on the job. Little thoughts like this are important when 30 people work for 24 hours on three media for one campaign.
Conducting a marathon work session frays nerves and taxes our physiology. It’s more than getting tired — fatigue affects everything we do, and how well we do it. Tricks to staying active for 24 hours is mostly common sense, but it was worth repeating to the team two days before the event.
- Get enough sleep the day before. Not too much, but you want to start rested.
- Hydrate. Drink water, tea, or other non-fizzy beverages throughout the day.
- Put the brakes on coffee after lunch. Many people crash more than buzz after a steady stream of caffeine.
- Be prepared to be mentally tired. “It can get a little dicey at night. We push people to do this — trying to do this in 24 hours is insane. But we’ve always done it,” a Wired veteran said.
- Don’t try to sleep Friday morning. Aim for noon or 1pm. Sleep three hours at most, and then get up and walk. You’ll be back on your sleep schedule by 9pm.
All this came in handy after the first 14 hours on the job. It’s well worth the effort to help Sacred Heart Community Service celebrate their 50th year.