From my experiences as agency owner, and as Global Creative Director on the brand side, I added to everything I'd learned working for other agencies ... and am better for it.
Owning an agency with my name on the door for 5 years taught me:
• how to collect money from strapped clients in the middle of a deep recession ... and still remain friends
• the one thing harder than coming up with a great idea is explaining how you're different
• business is about helping people—because not everyone needs advertising, but everyone needs help in some way
Working as a senior creative leader on the client side taught me:
The closer you are to the actual day-to-day running of the business, the more effective creativity can be—so be a champion for agency partners.
Writing a thoughtful, informed creative brief is the single most important contribution a client can make to an agency’s productivity and value.
Agency responses to RFPs are virtually indistinguishable—so find a writer who’s worked as a client and understands the process from their point of view.
Agencies would be more valued and make more money if compensation were tied to client benchmarks—so I created a Value-Based Compensation approach to achieve this.