There are real dangers in embedding your project management team throughout the agency. Let’s get in the weeds and explore why. I’ll start by clarifying some important points:
With that background, here are the three reasons why embedded project management fails:
I am no longer the President of Ryder Communications Group. I no longer have to make payroll every 14 days. I no longer cut my prices to bring in work. I no longer wait 120 days to get paid. I no longer give my expertise away for free. I no longer work with clients I’ve kept for far too long. I no longer get my six-figure salary or my fancy car paid for, or any of the other perks that come with being the owner of a small design firm.
I let it all go. After more years than I’d care to count, the fire in my belly to keep it going faded. And as hard as I tried to stoke the fire, it became clearer each day that something else was calling my name....
I call myself an author, speaker, and advisor. What would you call yourself if you could only use three words, and needed to list them in a specific order?
The order I use is intentional because it’s an aspirational statement about how I want to impact my world. One-half of my income still comes from advising (it’s a term that’s not as loaded as consulting), but it’s not as sustainable as the other two.
What three words would you use for yourself? Some of you would use the same three words that I have. Most of you run sizeable firms, and for you folks I’d like to take a stab at answering that question. Even if I’m not correct, maybe I can get you thinking about this.
Here are the three words you should probably use to describe yourself, and in this order:
The entrepreneurs running creative firms are different than their older counterparts. Here's a recent podcast episode where Blair Enns interviews me about that subject. If you enjoy this episode, I hope you'll subscribe. We'd also value your positive rating on iTunes.
The only preparation we do before each recording is a quick email that says: "Hey, Blair, interview me about this tomorrow. Here are three or four talking points." And then we launch into what at times could be considered an awkward transparency about what we are thinking (we take turns interviewing each other, with a different topic each episode). There are no retakes and no editing of the content. It's been new, fresh, and fun for us. You can find out more here. Click below to listen to this episode immediately.
Here's another of my favorites. In this one....
I’ve now surveyed 20,000+ employees in the marketing field, and there are some real gems in the findings about all kinds of things. I was struck recently by how one issue had surfaced repeatedly in many ways over many years, and it’s worth mentioning to you here.
The one thing you might do differently is to pursue a strategy of measured involvement. That means that when and how you’ll insert yourself at work is predictable.
Employees don’t care too much about less than normal involvement or more than normal involvement as much as they don’t like surprises. They like your input, usually, but they absolutely hate it when you swoop in at the last minute and put everything on a different path, whether that’s how a client problem is being solved or an employee situation is being handled or whatever.
This whiplash style is disrespectful because....