Founders of creative/digital agencies learn from each other's success via the Playbook, instead of having to learn everything the hard way on their own. Join us.

The playbook is built around two core frameworks from Convivio:

  • SPARK — the AgencyOps framework
    Get the day to day work of your agency running calmly and healthily, freeing up your time and attention to focus on leadership.
  • FLAME — the Agency Leadership framework
    Work at a higher altitude in your agency, proactively designing the business.

You can also browse the Playbook by the stages of the Agency Lifecycle, or your roles as CEO, Director and Owner.

SPARK — the AgencyOps framework

The 5 key elements to keep your agency running calmly and healthily.


Presenting yourselves to clients, developing your offer, gaining attention, winning new business, and building ongoing client relationships. Part of the SPARK framework for AgencyOps.


Delivering great work for clients. Part of the SPARK framework for AgencyOps.


Ensuring positive outcomes by every measure for clients, staff, the agency and its owners. Part of the SPARK framework for AgencyOps.


Curating, growing and managing the knowledge within the business to enable better client service and less reliance on founders. Part of the SPARK framework for AgencyOps.

FLAME — the Agency Leadership framework

Take your agency to the next level, by working at a higher altitude in the business.


Pointing the business in the right direction and ensuring everyone is working towards it. Part of the FLAME framework for Agency Leadership.


Freeing people up to do their greatest work by removing bureaucracy and enabling leadership at all levels. Part of the FLAME framework for Agency Leadership.


Ensuring the right people and information are connected, and everyone understands where they fit in the bigger picture and what part they play. Part of the FLAME framework for Agency Leadership.


Developing a rhythm to activity in the agency that builds a sustainable momentum. Part of the FLAME framework for Agency Leadership.

Agency lifecycle stage


The beginning of the agency lifecycle when, you're cracking on with storming and forming. It's often ad hoc and chaotic, but it's the stage when you're most in touch with everything that's going on.

Now is the time to set the vision and direction, and make clear progress towards it.

Usually 1–10 people.


In this stage the agency is taking the first steps to grow up. But this needs a change in leadership approach, and a bit more structure.

It's a time to calm the chaos of the start-up stage.

You've passed 10(ish) people, depending on the type of agency and rate of growth.


This is the stage in the lifecycle when the agency is maturing, and it's ready to take the steps to become independent from its founders.

In this stage, you're putting in place a full leadership team and management structure, and you're developing a clearer culture and solid processes.

You've probably reached 30(ish) people.


At this stage in the agency lifecycle, growth is less about big-bang changes and more about embedding constant change and growth as a process.

Scaling up is about reliably repeatedly replicating what you do.

You're probably passing 75(ish) people.


At this stage, you're looking to develop the strategic options for the future of the business beyond being owned by the current owners.

What options are best for the owners and best for the business?


Don't panic!

Most agencies have some period of crisis in their history. Many have several they can talk about.

So, don't panic. Just work through it, step by step.

Agency leadership role

Agency CEO

Vital playbooks for agency CEOs, at every stage of your agency's life.

From the hands-on work during your start-up phase, through to leading a team and stepping back from being a practitioner, there's playbooks here for all you need to know to cut a dash in the CEO hat, and lead your business iwth confidence.

Latest playbook guides