HOW’s Mind Your Own Business Conference is concentrated business management training for the creative firm owner. Held every other year, MYOB allows firm owners to network with peers and hear from some of the top business consultants in the industry. David Baker is not only one of this year’s speakers, he is also the driving force behind the conference.
The Live Agency Review
David C. Baker, Principal, ReCourses, Inc.
Something extraordinary has happened at every MYOB Conference. An agency principal “bares their business” on stage in front of hundreds of colleagues, as creative-business consultant David C. Baker reviewes their financials, their marketing plan, their day-to-day business practices, etc.. In the process, he uncoveres—and shares with the audience—their successes, their mistakes, and opportunities they should be seizing, as well as surprising feedback he gathered from their employees prior to the conference. David will once again conduct an abbreviated agency review at this year’s MYOB Conference. Don’t miss this opportunity to see inside another agency and glean advice that is truly real-world.
5 Tips For Being a Great Design Firm Principal
1. Employees are not entrepreneurs or they wouldn’t be working for you. Don’t be resentful if they leave on time, take vacations, etc. Why the heck shouldn’t they? Don’t let your entrepreneurial loneliness create a false sense of dependence on the commitment of an employee, measured by how late they stay.
2. Most entrepreneurial types are control freaks, not in the name of quality but in the name of control. Their head begins to explode when the firm gets beyond 5 to 6 people.
3. Tell folks what culture you want, but don’t put it on a wall on some silly plaque. There is an inverse relationship between the number of plaques and the real truth. Instead, reinforce it with your actions at least 50 times per day.
4. At some point (2 to 4 years from the beginning) you’re going to need to move from hiring for affordability to hiring for need (to heck with the cost).
5. If you’re solving the same problems every day, you need to quit watching “Groundhog Day” or implement more process. Or read “The E-Myth Revisited” by my friend Michael Gerber. The first half is good—just skip the last half.
(Read David Baker’s top 48 tips for being a great design firm principal or design group manager in HOW’s November Business Annual.)