Hey there agency owner! Let me see if any of these get a wince out of you.
Shock VAT bills, payroll rolling around again so fast, outstanding invoices, prospects ghosting you, sales slowing to a slump, the boom and bust rollercoaster?
Sometimes agency life can feel like going around and around like a stuck record. Each month brings around the same old same old. Same challenges, different day. Welcome to Groundhog Day.
You might not know this but I’m kind of obsessed with business. I have been since I was about six years old. The one thing that fascinates me is why so few businesses crack the growth code and become profitable. One of the reasons is that many business and agency owners are stuck on this never-ending loop and they're not sure how to break the cycle.
The dedication and drive to sharpen your skills and implement what matters plays a big, big role in getting unstuck. Surprised? I bet not.
There’s one skill you need to become intimate with. And that is generating revenue!
Profitable sales are oxygen to your agency. If you bring in sales and revenue and can do that on repeat, well I don’t think there’s a business challenge or problem that you can’t solve and no obstacle that you can’t turn into opportunity.
Can you feel an almighty BUT coming your way?
You would be right. The big BUT to that is crafting the skill and habits to spend your time on highly leveraged activities. And understand the opportunity cost of not spending your time on the right things.
For example, the opportunity cost of spending 10 hours fiddling with your accounting software could be your next 10k client. The opportunity cost of doing that prospective client’s spec work for free could be following up with the 10 prospects who aren’t asking for free work. The list goes on my friend but write this question on a Post-it note and keep it in view:
What is the opportunity cost of doing this* right now?
*This is the thing you’re doing to procrastinate or avoid doing the hard things.
I’m hoping this blog is going to give you some ideas so you can get the BUTS out of the way and clear the decks to focus on becoming a revenue-generating master. In other words, growing your agency on purpose.
How to grow your agency on purpose
Stop doing 'busy work'
What things do you do that you keep doing even though they don’t make you money?
Let me frame something. A goal is something that would otherwise not happen or exist if it weren’t for taking considered and deliberate action towards it. So if you’re busy on things that aren’t important remember it’s your dreams and goals on the line.
The little stuff kills the big stuff!
Get rid of 'bad work'
The squeakiest wheel needs the most oil. Ever heard that saying? Bad work is the work you do for the clients who aren’t going to grow your business. The clients who drain you and your team, they aren't profitable and they squeak a lot. If you and your team are super busy doing 'bad work' you don’t have time to proactively look after your ideal clients or best buyers. I’ll be doing more on when and how to resign bad clients but you know what you need to do. And when you do fire that bad client, I know it’s scary but it will create the spaciousness for better ones to come along.
If you don’t look after your best clients, your competitors will!
Whether that’s saying ‘no’ to things where the opportunity cost is too great. Or simply saying ‘no’ to doing things for free anymore or being too accessible. There’s a lot that goes into creating boundaries. Hit pause and take a look at where you’re being reactive. What’s sucking your time but not creating results?
Being busy is not the same as being productive.
Boundaries are the guard rails to your productivity.
If you want to leave Groundhog Day behind, think about how a ‘boss agency owner' would spend their time and do more of that. Oh, you thought I was going to give you a laundry list of things to do? If only it was that easy right? Instead, I’m going to tell you what a good coach once told me:
Work out your hourly rate.
If you work 38 hours per week, you make $5,000 per week then your hourly rate is $131 per hour.
Should you be doing things that you could outsource for less than $131 per hour? The answer is a resounding no! Please pull out a paper and pen and work out your hourly rate, knowing this number is an absolute game-changer! It's one of the most blinding pieces of advice I've ever been given.
Delegate, outsource, automate, and leverage what you can. Ultimately, your time should be spent gaining a deep knowledge of your market, and your prospects’ pains and goals, working on marketing, sales, and moving the needle.
That’s how you grow your agency on purpose!
If you want to know exactly where you have gaps in your business and where you should prioritise your time, I’ve got a nifty audit for you. It takes 10 minutes to do AND it comes with a bonus training video on how a BOSS agency owner spends their time.
Go to agencygapquiz.com and get it now (it's free).