Month: June 2020

Undoing a Culture of Fear

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What does a Culture of Fear at a company look like? People are afraid to speak up for fear of what management or other team members might think. People are afraid to take initiative for fear of making a mistake and getting reprimanded by management. People are afraid to help each other for fear of being blamed if something goes wrong. People are afraid to go above and beyond for fear of being seen as […]

Set Up to Fail, Failed to Set Up

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Some years ago, we had a fresh out of college employee at Barrel who was sharp and smart. This was during a time when we had a very flat structure and whoever was available, regardless of experience, was staffed on projects as needed. We staffed this employee on a number of fairly important projects and told the employee to figure things out. That’s what smart people are supposed to do, right? Some weeks later, we […]

Exploring Client Concentration in an Agency Business

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Client concentration isn’t a topic that comes up much when I chat with other agency operators. The most common references to client concentration I’ve heard are usually concerns from folks who rely heavily on a single client for most of their revenue. Agency business experts and 2Bobs podcast hosts Blair Enns and David C. Baker recommend that creative firms should have a roster of around 8-15 clients. This doesn’t matter if you’re doing $1 million […]