A roundup of industry expertise, exclusive resources, business support and tools for your design business.
Read more >>
Ask clients, ‘If you could choose just one area of your business that you’d like us to know more about, what would it be?’ The answers can be extremely revealing about concerns and future plans.
Director, Up to the Light
After a year where sacrifice has been a national duty, let’s re-purpose sacrifice as a guiding light for the future by truly accepting what we don’t do and who we won’t work with. Then give everything we have to the remaining opportunities!
Founder, The Brand Experience Consultancy
Just as seeds are planted in the dark, now is the time for every business to plant seeds for future growth. During dark times, there are always opportunities for imaginative, forward-focused companies to seize, develop and springboard ahead.
MD, Lola Media
Change the way you think about change. Change is hardest of all when we don’t feel in control, and yet we can always control our attitude towards change. What is yours? How is it evolving?
Design Strategist and Facilitator, Design Connect
Three things about presentation equilibrium: 1: Good presentations are conversations not showtime. 2: Design is a knowledge business, not a service industry. 3: Your relationship with clients and prospects is always equal-to-equal, professional-to-professional, expert-to-expert. Think equilibrium. Respect yourself. Have confidence.
This year has been like no other. Pause, acknowledge and celebrate what you have achieved. Reach out to those you’ve worked with and thank them for their support. Go into next year with a really positive mental attitude.
MD, The Hand
It’s been an extraordinary year – don’t underestimate the toll it’s taken on you. Your resilience is key. Take this chance to rest, recalibrate and be ready to approach 2021 with energy and focus.
Consultant and Non Executive Director
If you don’t have direct experience in the industries that have thrived this year, demonstrate the fresh perspective your agency could bring by providing insights and advice into their problems. Then turn them into engagements that influence and build authority.
To avoid getting caught out by the changes occurring from Brexit, block out diary time in the early part of 2021 now to focus on IP, so it doesn’t inadvertently slip down your priority list.
Senior Associate, Patent Attorney, D Young & Co LLP
For your team, camaraderie and loyalty have stood with isolation and uncertainty in 2020. Invest in your people – in diversity, training, retention, flexibility and in togetherness. The stronger your team, the more you’ll benefit from the opportunities that lie ahead.
MD, IF Media Consultancy
For a dose of optimism and inspiration visit the fantastic Designs of the Year exhibition at the Design Museum, which is on until the end of March 2021. You’ll find the most innovative designs across fashion, architecture, digital, transport, product and graphic design.
Consultant and Non Executive Director
Get your contract terms up-to-date. Cleanse your data base. Keep only personal data for the purpose for which you have permission. Data protection requirements apply to all marketing. Personal data includes a person’s business details!
Partner, Humphries Kirk LLP
Time management is a challenge for agency owners; getting sucked into client work and firefighting; often putting off the things they don’t like – sales! Embrace it, practice at it, have fun with it. We’re all in sales. It’s just that some of us choose not to believe that.
Founder, Gray Matters
Focus on employee engagement – strong manager/employee relationships, aligned goals, and empathetic leaders will be key for building a resilient workforce in 2021. Kick-off the year with an engagement survey to truly understand employees’ needs.
Founding Partner, JourneyHR
With virtual presentations and pitches here to stay, we need to work even harder to make this digital connection an authentic human connection. Aim to move from monologue to dialogue, from presentation to conversation. It can make all the difference.
Director and Trainer, Master the Art
It’s currently popular to suggest there may be another ‘Roaring Twenties’ – and look how they turned out. History repeats itself if we do not heed its warnings. That also applies to business development: review every campaign, what worked and what didn’t, and adjust the next one accordingly.
Director, Little Train BD
“Grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can, and Wisdom to know the difference.” Applies to all aspects of life, every day.
Director, Wright Vigar Chartered Accountants
DBA Experts are here to help you navigate the challenges and decisions you face as you grow your business. Our register of accredited expert consultants have sustained and relevant experience in supporting the design industry, so you can rest assured that you will be getting sound, high-level support.
Our Experts have extensive experience supporting the creative industries and are:
Michael Dziedzic | Unsplash
Susan Yin | Unsplash
Kelly Sikkema | Unsplash
Yann Allegre | Unsplash
Egor Iskrenkov | Unsplash
Drew Coffman | Unsplash
Alex Ware | Unsplash
Possessed Photography | Unsplash
Devin Avery | Unsplash
Campaign Creators | Unsplash
Scott Webb | Unsplash
Jon Tyson |Unsplash
Vinicius Lw | Unsplash
Bacila Vlad | Unsplash
Chris Lawton | Unsplash
timJ | Unsplash
Alev Takil | Unsplash
Jim Rhoades | Unsplash
Adam: we have sponsored a teenager, called Ishiatu, through a school in Sierra Leone. She is currently sitting the equivalent of A-levels. Betterdayz is a small charity run by a friend I went to school with. After a holiday in Sierra Leone with his wife they decided to support a local orphanage charity. When the charity went bust they stepped in and took it over. An inspirational couple making a real difference to the lives of a small group of young adults with hard lives.
Amy: ending homelessness is not just about putting a roof over someone’s head, it’s about rebuilding someone’s life. St Mungo’s have developed an inclusive, recovery-based approach that takes a person’s unique skills and strengths and places them at the heart of their own journey. 2020 has been a tough year for everyone, but none more so than the already vulnerable people living on the street, and St Mungo’s have helped almost 3,000 homeless people to isolate safely during the pandemic.
The charity is brilliant at keeping you in the loop with the work they do, so you have no doubt that you are contributing to something that really makes a difference.
Deborah: we have a British Heart Foundation book shop on Streatham High Road that I LOVE! In fact it’s my favourite shop on our high road. And at least once a week, I’ll find a reason to drop in and scan through the second-hand books for a gem or two – they change constantly. Yesterday I bought a book on knitted tea cosies (whoever gave them that name was a genius), a concertina folding book which you spy through from one end to reveal a diorama of The Mall dressed for the Coronation (blown away by this find), a garden crafts for kids book, a book on London’s five Royal Palaces and a Quentin Blake book on how to look at artworks for kids, but I’m going to keep it! And so because I value this shop so much, and it’s all in aid of the British Heart Foundation, I gave them my Secret Santa money on top of the book money.
Hannah: I’ve donated to the friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man’s Brothers Trust. A fantastic initiative from Tom Holland and his brothers to support small and local charities which struggle to be heard. Charities like Momentum Children’s Charity, who are there every step of the way supporting families in SW London when a child is diagnosed with cancer. With fundraising opportunities reduced by the pandemic, small charities have been hit hard, but the personal touch and support they bring to families is more vital than ever. That’s why I’m donating to the Brothers Trust, so they can fly the flag for these charities.
Natasha: I choose the North London Hospice for all the amazing care they gave my aunt who passed away at the end of last year. The nurses, doctors and volunteers were so attentive and caring and the hospice really was a home from home for the whole family.
Ramiro: in university, for class we went to an inner-city school in Philadelphia, PA to help children with their reading skills. The majority of the kids came from Spanish-speaking families which helped me identify with them even further due to my being bilingual. I really enjoyed helping the kids and watching their reading get better. You can really see their imagination take over their expressions when they delve into the worlds they find in books and even better when they identify their own interests and search for topics in books, which is why I choose to donate my Secret Sant money to BookTrust.
My own children now are bookworms and we have a varied children’s library at home.
Sally: within the first two weeks of lockdown in March, there was a 41% increase in users visiting the Women’s Aid Live Chat site which can be discreetly accessed by women without risking being heard by a perpetrator. Each chat between a survivor and Women’s Aid expert support worker costs roughly £5, so my Secret Santa this year will help continue this vital support.