I’ve heard it time and time again, from many agency principals across the country on how they are the Cobbler’s Children.
First, I am truly amazed that many of these agency principals impress me with their knowledge and their smarts, yet they acknowledge dumping themselves down with a shrug of acceptance.
The irony is that these same agency principals set a very high bar for their work and their personal achievements, yet they compromise on marketing their agencies.
Why do they lag?
Funny how many agency principals will pay for a personal trainer, yoga lessons, pay for an outrageous meal, lease beautiful cars, but won’t use outside expertise in marketing their business. Yet, all day long they preach to prospects that they need an outside perspective and you can’t do it with your own vision.
So here are some thoughts on getting some shoes for your children.
First change your process. Reverse your priorities.
Most agencies start their Monday mornings with a review of the client’s status list. Change that.
I think most agency people already know on Sunday night, what work is facing them on Monday without a status meeting. That’s why they don’t want to go to work on Monday.
Start your Monday morning meetings early with a review of your agency’s status list of projects to market your agency and not your client. Follow that meeting with your New Business Meeting. Those are the two most important things you can do on a Monday morning because they are the only two things you can control in your life. Can you control your client?
Review your client’s project list first thing on Tuesdays. Many of the urgent projects will have been addressed on Monday without the status meeting. Trust me on that.
Then it is time for agency principals to leave the office on Wednesdays and Thursdays unless there was a great networking event on Tuesday. Get out of your office because you are the face behind the brand. Attend networking meetings, visit your client’s stores, do store checks, have lunch with your clients, be outside. Be the first agency principal in your market who regularly attends AAF, PRSA, AMA, IABC chapter meetings in your town. Your time investment will be amplified through word of mouth. You will be core.
On Friday mornings, bring in breakfast for all of your employees from a restaurant that is not part of a national chain. Have a different employee each week bring in their favorite music and play it at breakfast on your sound system. On Fridays, ban internal emails. If your employees need to get something done internally, insist that they meet with that person face to face especially if you are a larger agency.
Insist that all agency principals on Friday have lunch individually with a different employee, supplier, alliance partner or a person they have met while networking that week that is 10 to 20 years younger than them.
Can’t do that? Then have a lunch and learn every Friday.
From 2 to 5 pm on Friday’s, it’s should be totally agency time. Write blogs, update your website, tweet, get smarter by networking, and connect with people on LinkedIn. There are many things to do.
You need to be focus on being core and committed.
“But Hank, this would take so much time!” Yes and no. The question you should ask is, “Will this make my agency grow and, is this the way I would love to live my agency life?
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Watch: How to Rise Above the Crowd