Wednesday, February 8, 2017

The 3 Roles You Need In Your Agency

One of the most influential professional mentors I’ve ever had, George Valva, CEO of the former promotional agency DVC, once gave me some great advice on what it takes to make a successful marketing agency.  It came down to finding the balance of 3 crucial roles.  They are not official job titles but instead, personalities that you need to have in your agency.
This is that big personality that knows everyone and can sell anything.  Most likely The Finder loves his or her marketing job our business.  They’ll come back from a night of beers at a pub and will have managed to secure a spot for the agency at an upcoming pitch.  A friend of a friend of a friend of theirs owns a well funded start up who just so happens to be looking for an agency. Naturally The Finder gets the agency in.  Somehow they manage to find work everywhere. Don’t expect them to manage that business though or follow through on the nitty gritty details.  That will be a disaster.  For that you need…The Minder and The Grinder.
Give them an account to manage and it will go beautifully.  The client will like them and be very happy.  You’ll probably even get organic revenue growth from the client. The Minder will most likely will end up “friends” with the client and the client will consider them a trusted partner.  However, don’t pressure them to up-sell outside their comfort zone.  The client’s trust in The Minder will be damaged if they are perceived as constantly selling additional work. When you want to introduce new ideas and extended services, bring in additional team members like The Finder above.
THE GRINDER:This person gets sh*t done.  Often a senior PM or very detailed account person is the ideal Grinder.  They are usually pretty direct and honest and might even be considered “rough around the edges” which isn’t always the best in front of a new client.  Following process is a priority to The Grinder and they are great at hounding people for deliverables.  The Grinder is crucial to get things done.As you read this, I’m sure you can immediately think of colleagues you work with and how they fit into these roles.  There are even employees who have the characteristics of 2 of these personality groups.  However, there will be one role that they master.   Make sure your agency has the right balance of Finders, Minders and Grinders.