Next month Matt Sullivan (The Drum Network) and I will be launching a new initiative for agency start-ups: A peer-to-peer network for those of us who are in the early stages of our agency lives, to gain business specific support from a community of like-minded entrepreneurs. We’ll be running regular free breakfast sessions as well an event later in the year where members can network with brands interested in meeting new agencies. More on that to come.
I’m delighted to be leading this new group for The Drum Network because I passionately believe that start-ups are the lifeblood of innovation for the creative industries. Like a great creative idea, it’s all about refinement and start-ups are the best way of refining what works well in our industry.
You don’t need me to tell you that leading or being part of a start-up is tough. On the one hand you are fuelled with boundless ambition. On the other hand, you fear failure almost every day.
And in our sector many marketing industry leaders are saying that the days of the traditional agency model are numbered, and the leaders of those traditional agency businesses are the ones who struggle to truly innovate because of their structures and egos. I believe it’s up to us, as entrepreneurs, to fearlessly prove the commercial value of agencies in this new age of consumerism.
I am looking forward to sharing privately our successes and challenges as future leaders. That may sound grand, and there’s plenty of ambitious stuff for us to share, but let’s also be down to earth and honest and talk about what’s painful and scary too.
Start-up life can sometimes be lonely. I’m looking forward to us buddying up informally, so we’ve all got another experienced non-judgemental colleague to turn to when needed.
Our first breakfast is taking place at Wax/On’s HQ on Tuesday 14 May. We’ll be discussing mental health to coincide with The Drum’s mental wellbeing research that is launching this month in partnership with Opinium and Warwick University. We’re still planning our next few sessions, where topics will include; those first important hires, and building a culture. If this sounds interesting, or you fancy checking out if it’s right for you, come join us.
I’d love to hear what you want from our community - please do get in touch firstname.lastname@example.org.
See you soon.
If you work for an agency in the first 3 years of business, please book a place at the breakfast on 14 May to come and find out if the group is right for you. Alternatively, if you have a friend or colleague that is running a start-up agency please feel free to forward this email. CLICK HERE to book.