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As a full-service marketing and creative firm, we tend to stay busy. Between the waves of busyness, we are regrouping and preparing for that next wave, picking up the pieces of chaos that the previous wave caused. It’s a cyclical thing that keeps us on our toes, and it’s easy to let it keep us from doing a lot of things we’d love to be doing.
We’re the mechanic whose car smokes.
“We need to update our portfolio on the website!” “Quint needs more business cards!” “We should be posting to our blog and social media.” “Quint needs more business cards. Again.” “Did anyone take pics during our team meeting?”
You get the picture.
We focus nearly all our attention on client work, leaving our own initiatives starving and neglected.
If you’re growing, you’re busting it to get to the next goal. If you’re successful, you’re busy sustaining that success. And, if neither is true, your biggest problem isn’t a neglected blog.
This year we set out to take some bold steps towards a new and healthy direction. Four of them to be exact. Each Friday, throughout January, we hosted all-day, all-staff workshops, each with a different problem to solve.
We turned the discovery lens we typically hold over our clients to ourselves. We got real. We got introspective. We got a better perspective of ourselves than ever before. We’ve since launched a new brand identity that we love, and we’re excited to push that forward.
Workflow isn’t that much fun to talk about, and can be difficult to nail down. Some jobs need hundreds of steps. Some only two. We first discussed our current workflow. Then, we went through an iterative and reductive process that literally (with the help of post-it notes) put our ideal process on the wall for everyone to see. Through this exercise, we identified our key issues, inefficiencies, and areas for growth.
We reserved a day allowing our entire team to focus in on each core client for an hour or two each. We talked through what was working well, what wasn’t working well, and things we weren’t doing for clients that we should be. The most important thing we ended up with was a list of goals for each client in 2018. 13 of the 33 identified goals have been reached and/or completed, and we see six or so in the pipeline for Q4 of this year. We’ll take that win ratio any day!
Web, Social, & Community
Finally, we turned our attention to how we express ourselves online and how we impact our community. Of all our meetings, this might just be the effort we’ve neglected most (hence, this blog post only seeing the light of day now). However, we are continuously making an effort to improve this aspect of our brand. Having a presence in our community, both online and in person, is an ongoing project for us.
Implementing what we learned from these meetings has been an ongoing process. It’s not easy, and putting ourselves on the same priority level as our clients is not in our nature. We’re kind of used to our car smoking, but behind our closed doors is a team that knows what it’s doing and loves doing it. Smoke and all.