Play the long game and succeed
Playing the long game is what being a successful agency is about. I am a firm believer that you will get out of life what you want but not as you first imagined. It’s all about having a vision, being patient and trusting that the final outcome will be best for you.
Successful agencies take responsibility of their people, beyond simply the recruitment process. They invest in their people, sending out a global message of the consistent desire to improve quality, productivity and profitability and that people come first.
Successful agencies turn the workplace into an environment that encourage individuals to be themselves, to have fun and to take risks with confidence. As a result those agencies fuel loyalty and unleash creativity.
The key to this focuses on four key areas:
- Team building and growth
- Effective management
- Coaching and Mentoring
Team Building and Growth
A team is not just a collection of individuals. It’s about getting more out of each person because they are part of a team. Together everyone achieves more. It is an organic and dynamic thing, so will constantly change and respond to each other differently.
We all recognise that growth is important financially and culturally but to change their behaviour people need more than growth targets they need the agency growth ambitions to be motivating personally for them as individuals and connected to their opportunities.
It is the people, their creativity and the way that they are led and managed which differentiates a successful agency – not the latest gadgets or hi-spec piece of kit.
Be aware that growing a business too quickly can cause its eventual demise.
The key is to have a strong and inspirational leader who understands the different styles of management required to achieve the task, who trusts the people, has loads of common sense, is totally dedicated and has the ability to get the very best work from their people.
In the creative business you need to be a creative manager. You are not there to block people from being creative and the creative process, but to inspire and motivate people to be creative. Effective managers need to be chosen for their relationship skills and not just their technical capabilities, as they are dealing with highly talented people and there can be a clash of cultures. Creative Managers never avoid the increasing people challenges in the workplace and they inspire total confidence in others.
The first job of management is to create an environment where people flourish.
Motivation is what gets you out of bed in the morning. It’s all about your intent, your purpose and your ability to put qualities like passion, commitment, fire, heart and energy to good use. It’s what empowers you to succeed and make light of the barriers and roadblocks that cause others to stop and give up.
Motivation is key to success. Look at any successful person or business and you will find motivated individuals who are driven by an end goal. In successful agencies, stress levels are turned into a source of energy that can ignite the imagination, and enables them to go on and make those big and decisive decisions.
When your feeling demotivated look back at the themes that run through your successful projects.
Coaching and Mentoring
Coaching and Mentoring are important ingredients when playing the long game, as we all need help and guidance along the way.
Coaching as a process requires dedicated time. When it becomes a time driven activity that pushes people, it becomes “direct coaching” and the results are less effective. Successful outcomes are achieved by ”holding the space coaching” offering time and a helping hand to pull people forward to reach peak performance.
Mentoring is more relational in that it provides both personal help, both within the context of the business and outside it. Most top agency leaders have mentors, not on how to run the business, but on how to control their frame of mind, especially in very challenging situations when they or the agency are not performing well or unable to cope with high powered negotiations.
Coaching is the missing ingredient for high performance.
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