Episode 259:

Ongoing professional development is a challenge in most agencies. It’s tough to gather the right tools/resources, some agency owners aren’t sure about how to make it happen and for most the biggest challenge is making the time. And yet we know that one of the critical elements of our agency’s ongoing success is that our team has to keep getting better. I am a firm believer that professional development is a shared responsibility, which means your employees should do some of it on their own time and on their own dime. However, creating a culture of ongoing skills development and contextual learning is vital to stay ahead of the pack. And it’s not as hard as we might think.

My guest for this episode is a longtime veteran of the advertising industry. From print production and creative services to leading employee development within HR, Cecilia Gorman earned her stripes at agencies and brands large and small – most notably Y&R, Oakley, and Innocean. She currently consults on manager development, helping creative-minded companies strengthen the communication, leadership, and effectiveness of managers at all levels.

In this episode of Build a Better Agency, Cecilia joins me to talk about what it actually looks like to build a team of lifelong learners. She explains how agency owners can integrate professional development into their culture and create an active learning environment that impacts their clients and their team members alike. That not only serves your clients well but dramatically impacts retention and employee satisfaction. Everyone wins.

A big thank you to our podcast’s presenting sponsor, White Label IQ. They’re an amazing resource for agencies who want to outsource their design, dev or PPC work at wholesale prices. Check out their special offer (10 free hours!) for podcast listeners here.

Agency Owners | Creating a culture of active learning in your agency

What You Will Learn in This Episode:

  • The number one thing that gets in the way of professional development
  • Why agency owners need to make professional development a part of the culture
  • How some agencies are carving out time for professional development, and when is the best time to invest in employee growth and development
  • What managers can do to create an active learning environment
  • How we can use storytelling to get more buy-in to our culture
  • The importance of developing self-awareness on top of technical skills
  • Four key skills that agencies should never neglect
  • Cecilia’s background in the agency world, and how she transitioned into professional development coaching

The Golden Nuggets:

“The most expensive asset agency owners have is their people, but we don’t really know how to help them develop their skills over time.” @_ceciliagorman Click To Tweet “The number one thing that gets in the way of professional development is time.” @_ceciliagorman Click To Tweet “The professional development initiative has to be a part of the culture—it has to come from the top. Without that step, it will never have a powerful everlasting effect.” @_ceciliagorman Click To Tweet “Professional development is not something that gets added to our plate, it is just how we exist and how we operate.” @_ceciliagorman Click To Tweet “Today, employees are less tolerant of working in an environment where they are not being invested in.” @_ceciliagorman Click To Tweet “The four key conversations that agency owners should never neglect are courage, resilience, curiosity, and initiative.” @_ceciliagorman Click To Tweet

Ways to contact Cecilia Gorman: