A great thing about leading an agency full of smart creative people is the sheer number of ideas they come up with.

A hard thing about leading an agency full of smart creative people is the sheer number of ideas they come up with.

These can be ideas for internal improvements, side projects, useful tools, the way you all work, potential products, fun things to do, and so on (and maybe you generate your fair share too 😜.)

Which is great.

But not every idea will deliver enough value for the time and effort it consumes, and none of them will deliver any value unless you actually complete them.

Your agency has a limited capacity — which gets prioritised for selling and delivering client work.

So agencies often tend to fall into some of these traps:

  1. Not getting round to doing any new ideas because they're too busy with clients
  2. Doing loads of ideas, but never finishing any of them
  3. Some ideas get worked on, but only the 'cool' stuff that people want to play with, rather than what would deliver urgently-needed value for the agency and its clients
  4. Shiny noisy ideas overshadow quieter, better ones
  5. Doing loads of ideas, and finishing many of them — but client work and sales can suffer because of the diversion of attention. 'Bench' time mysteriously increases as people seek to make time to work on the fun side projects.

There has to be a better way, right?

How can you as the leader, nurture a culture and enable a process that results in great ideas bubbling up to address the most important problems and opportunities, with the best ones being selected — then the ideas getting completed and delivering way more value than they took up to create.

Over the next few weeks I'll set out some ideas of how to approach this, developing your agency to be continuously transforming, with a steady stream of meaningful improvements.

This week, take a look at the three traps above. Does your agency fall into one of these? Do you see another trap that I missed? OR — are you consistently able to make the right agency improvement ideas happen already?

Hit reply and let me know (I read all replies to these newsletters), and I'll share back with everyone (anonymously unless you say it's ok to name you).

Have a great week,