A key element of leadership is understanding where your firm is now. If the agency seems resistant to change, you may be in denial. The future of marketing belongs to those agencies that discover how to embrace change. Only in this way can they truly prepare for the future.
Leadership is critical for lasting change. But leaders can't lead if they don't face the truth!
Symptoms of Agency Denial: 10 Warning Signs a Firm Is in Trouble
Symptoms of Denial
10 Warning Signs a Firm Is in Trouble
Understand when it’s time to take a serious, in-depth
look at the way the agency operates – when a simple
hire or fire won’t create significant improvement.
Symptom 1: All the focus is on past success
Toys of Christmas Past by Paul Townsend
More time is spent talking
about the good old days.
Case studies are starting to
look dated. There is nothing
new to show. There is little to
get excited about.
Symptom 2: Risk taking is not encouraged
Staff is afraid. New ideas just
fizzle away. Punishment is
doled out for the smallest
infraction. Fear of failure
drives decision making.
"Taken at Trash " by Melusina Parkin
Symptom 3: Politics are the rule
Positions and titles become
increasingly important. More
private one-on-one meetings.
Motivation is questioned.
Issues addressed by trying to
Symptom 4: Employees guess at what
No big-picture direction from
management. Focus is on
Information flow is all back-channel.
Staff has difficulty
actually getting any work
Symptom 5: Decision making in the
hands/minds of the few
Agency becomes more
insular and siloed. Decisions
are bumped up to the next
higher authority. Work
delayed until management
reviews. Anyone who speaks
up is viewed with hostility. http://chris10ne.deviantart.com/art/Slow-Down-173245618
Symptom 6: Appearances are all-important
Agency seems focused on
distractions, busy work.
Managers squash feedback.
Bad news is swept under the
rug. Nobody is accountable.
Symptom 7: Programs du jour are the menu
Change programs started and
abandoned without achieving
anything. Every new
management fad imitated.
Off-site retreats produce little
Symptom 8: Micromanagement is the culture
Resistance to delegating any
work. Management expects
regular reports on miscellany.
Smaller and smaller faithful
“in” the know. Everything is a
Symptom 9: Energy level is low
Management finds it easier to
brush staff experience aside.
More meetings, no decisions.
Staff taking more breaks,
chatting and wasting time
online. Absenteeism rising.
Symptom 10: Business as usual
There is no vision for the
future, no plan for growth,
and no hope. Agency mission
statement hanging on the
wall seems lifeless and
phony. New ideas are
Get Out of Denial
Establish a Clear Vision/Mission
Motivating and energizing, yet
Leadership Must Commit Fully
Ensures resources, decisions,
momentum and action
Ensure Everyone Is Involved
Incorporate all operational
components and organizational
levels, no sacred cows
Leaders and change agents
Have a Plan
Develop it/work it/track it
Our experience in working with agencies
of all sizes has uncovered many
examples of denial, or barriers to change
Leaders need to shift their focus to inside
the agency and address tangible issues
Agencies often make the mistake of
addressing a single issue, such as
staffing, as opposed to taking a more
holistic approach to problem solving and
We encourage agencies to conduct a
broader, more in-depth assessment of
their organization to uncover the
underlying issues affecting performance
Sanders Consulting Group
Operating over 30 years, helping over
Known around the world as the leading
new business consulting firm
Working with some of the best managed
agencies on the globe
Selected as the new business training
provider to the largest agencies in the world
We show you how to win,
not just play the game
New Directions For Agency
We see our role as trusted advisors helping you to
chart a new path for your firm that leads to success
and perhaps moving to the next level. We believe that
anyone can adjust to the industry realities and survive.
But if you embrace them, you can soar.