Episode 148:

If there is a common pain point for agency owners today — it’s recruiting and retaining talent. It’s a conversation I am having every day and it’s more difficult than it’s been in quite a while. Unfortunately, I don’t see that trend reversing any time soon. Which means we’d all better improve our ability to keep the good ones that we either have or can attract. It’s starts with hiring the right person for the right reasons.

What are the most effective questions to ask during the interview process? What do you need to know about the candidate? What do they need to know about you, your agency and the culture there?

For my podcast guest Steve Lowisz, it all comes down to purpose. Are you clear on the purpose of the position your hiring for? Are deliverables clearly spelled out in the job description you are posting? It’s critical to discover if the candidate’s purpose actually aligns with your agency’s purpose, and if they do – you’d better have a plan for nurturing that shared passion.

Steve Lowisz is an expert on talent acquisition, talent assessment, personal development, diversity & inclusion, and business performance. He has more than two decades of research and practical business experience allowing him to serve hundreds of organizations and thousands of individuals.

As CEO of the Qualigence Group of Companies that he founded in 1999, Steve regularly contributes to Industry events and publications and has been featured in Fortune Magazine, CNN Money, The Detroit Free Press and on Bloomberg Radio.

 

 

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • Why job descriptions often don’t provide the right information to get the right candidate for the job
  • How to look at capacity, character, competencies, and culture when interviewing candidates
  • How to discover what is motivating someone’s job search
  • Identifying what a candidate is looking for that they don’t have now
  • The different competencies needed for working on site compared with working remotely
  • How facts, feelings, focus, and fruit can help get you through difficult, honest feedback conversations
  • Numerous strategies for hiring and retaining great talent
  • How to engage on LinkedIn, rather than using it as an “as needed” resume database
  • Why having one-on-one meetings still matter and how to fill them with purpose

The Golden Nuggets:

“How often do you see deliverables posted in a job description? When you set out clear expectations, candidates know right up front what is expected of them, and you know more clearly the profile of the person who will fit the job.” - @slowisz Click To Tweet “We tend to ask the surface level questions without the follow-up to get at the heart of the matter.” - @slowisz Click To Tweet “Stop hating on millennials. Whatever the generation, there is no difference in how you find and recruit the good ones.” - @slowisz Click To Tweet “Consistent one-on-ones with your direct reports is a non-negotiable. It matters how you approach it, for sure. So make sure there is a purpose and objectives, but these meetings are crucial to retaining great employees.” - @slowisz Click To Tweet “Don’t be generic in your praise. Take that person aside and be very specific. ‘You did a great job on this specific thing.’ That actually goes further in building that relationship.” - @slowisz Click To Tweet “If you’re not feeding an employee’s purpose, I don’t care what else you do. They’re going to find something else and they are going to leave.” - @slowisz Click To Tweet “Almost 90% of employees wish their bosses would be more direct about constructive feedback. They want us to be honest with them so they can improve.” - @slowisz Click To Tweet “Your sales job is not over when the candidate accepts the position. Development and retention are different from recruitment, but they are all connected.” - @slowisz Click To Tweet

 

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Speaker 1:

If you’re going to take the risk of running an agency, shouldn’t you get the benefits, too? Welcome to Agency Management Institute’s Build A Better Agency Podcast presented by HubSpot. We’ll show you how to build an agency that can scale and grow with better clients, invested employees, and best of all, more money to the bottom line. Bringing his 25 plus years of experience as both an agency owner and agency consultant. Please welcome your host, Drew McLellan.

Drew McLellan:

Hey everybody. Drew McLellan here with another episode of Build A Better Agency. Today’s topic is one that is near and dear to my heart, and I know is a critical part of your agency’s success. And that is the people that we choose to surround ourselves with in terms of the team that we build to serve our clients. And as I’m working with agencies all over the land, one of the challenges that many of you share is that your business is growing, things are stronger and better. And where a few years ago, you were struggling to find enough clients to keep your team busy. Now, the struggle has flipped.

And for many of you, the challenge is you have plenty of business. And in fact, some of you are taking your foot off of the biz dev gas. Because you have so much business, you cannot find the right teammates to help you service the client. And so, we’re going to spend the hour talking about how to build your team, and how to find the right people, and how to be the place that people want to work not just for a day but for a decade.

And to do all of that, I have brought a great guest who has a depth of knowledge around this. So, let me tell you a little bit about him. So, Steve Lowisz has spent the last 25 years as a successful entrepreneur, speaker, and business coach. In his two plus decades in business, he has founded five organizations that are all focused on people, how to find them, how to engage them, how to develop them, and how to create teams focused on results.

So, we’re going to, as best I can in one short hour, we’re going to try and touch on all of that. Steve has led engagement with organizations across the globe, including Starbucks, and Cisco Systems, and Walgreens, just to name a few. So, I think what you’re going to find is that Steve has a wealth of knowledge, some great stories to tell. And as always, my job is to get him to tell us all practical things that you can do immediately to build a bigger, better, stronger team for 2018, and for the future of your agency. So, Steve, welcome to the Podcast.

Steve Lowisz:

Drew, thank you so much, glad to be here.

Drew McLellan:

So, we have a lot to talk about in a short period of time. So, I want to jump right in. As I was saying to you before we hit the record button, the challenges agencies are struggling right now is to find enough people and enough right people. And so, as always is the case, when there’s a lot of pressure to add staff and you can’t find the right person, sometimes the wrong person slips in the door. And we have all experienced the pain of that. So, I’m hoping that you have some great ideas of how we can avoid that.

Steve Lowisz:

It’s true. And it’s actually not that difficult to find volume of people, Drew.

Drew McLellan:

Right.

Steve Lowisz:

The issue is finding the right person and really understanding for our own purposes as business owners, agency, and otherwise, it’s when we really know what we need. Because if we’re going 100% of a gut feel, you’re bound to make a bunch of problems.

Drew McLellan:

Yeah. So, when I teach workshops with agency owners, one of the things we talked about is that we’re horrible at interviewing and assessing if someone is really going to be good for our team. So, let’s start with that. How do define exactly what I’m looking for so that I recognize that when I find it?

Steve Lowisz:

So, this is an interesting one, because people try to make it more complicated than what it really is. And we create these really elaborate job descriptions, thinking this is going to solve my problem. But the job description doesn’t match what you really need in the first place. Go back to the basics, Drew. Asked the questions. What’s working? What’s not working? Why is it not working? What’s missing? What are the resources that I need?

We’ve got to start to really uncover and be honest in our agencies what’s going on before I start to determine what do I need to bring in, or I’m just making a bigger mess.

Drew McLellan:

Right. So, our job descriptions a bad thing? Are we doing them wrong? Should we not do them at all?

Steve Lowisz:

So, everybody’s got a different opinion of this. I will say this, caution you with job descriptions. Because they often serve as a crutch. So, let’s think about it, right? So, it’s, “Hey, I’m just looking for what’s on this piece of paper.” That’s what I need. And we’re not really looking at the bigger picture of the challenges within our own organization, right? So, we go to this, somebody made this template. And we keep using the same template over and over.

In that regard, I think it’s bad to have, horrible to have. But we also have to have a document to ultimately give us some guidance and determine and make it very clear, “Here’s the expectations once we do find the right person.” So, it’s a bit of a double-edged sword.

Drew McLellan:

So, describe for me a good job description. So, if I want it to do what it’s supposed to do, what are the elements in it?

Steve Lowisz:

Well, let’s go back for a second. What is it supposed to do? Let’s think about what the purpose of a job description is, right?

Drew McLellan:

Right.

Steve Lowisz:

What I mentioned is to lay out some of the objectives of the role. We get that, but it’s, in many instances, it’s way too generic, right? So, job descriptions originally came about as more of a compliance issue. We wanted to cover our butts. That’s really what happened, right? So, instead of looking at it as more of a functional living, breathing document that changes based upon an organization changing, right

And it’s not a one size fits all, because people are not a one size fits all. So, we still have to have some guidelines, right? We still have to have some terminology around what we think you’re going to be doing, what we would like to have in terms of deliverables which most job descriptions do not have.

Drew McLellan:

Right.

Steve Lowisz:

Right. How many have you seen with deliverables?

Drew McLellan:

Right. Never many, right. They’re just generic language.

Steve Lowisz:

But some of the best job descriptions I’ve seen have been very specific. It’s in your role. You are going to drive X amount in business. In your role, you are going to develop no less than 15 new clients for our agency. Rarely do I see it, but I’ve seen a couple that were that specific. So, now we know the profile of what needs to fit that job. And when the person comes on board, it’s in black and white. This is what’s expected. Because often, we think we hired the right person. We weren’t clear on what’s expected and they fall apart.

Drew McLellan:

Yeah. And how critical are some of the soft skills that… so, you just defined SMART goal outcomes, right?

Steve Lowisz:

Yeah. Yeah.

Drew McLellan:

So, I can measure it. It’s specific and all of that. Should a job description also include, or should there be another document? A lot of agencies have either core values, or they have soft skills, and like you have to be a good listener, and blah, blah, blah, whatever that is. Should those be included in a job description as well or is that just something you’re interviewing for?

Steve Lowisz:

Both. So, let’s take a step back. And there’s a lot of studies on this, right? So, generally speaking, we hire for skill, but we fire for something other than skill.

Drew McLellan:

Absolutely, yeah.

Steve Lowisz:

So, think about it. So, if I’m looking for a copywriter, I can look at a document that they’ve written, determined. Do they know how to be a copywriter? Simple.

Drew McLellan:

Right, right.

Steve Lowisz:

Creative director, doesn’t matter what it is. Business development, so on and so forth. But 89% of the time, we’re firing for something else. Culture fit, ability, not the skill to do the job, but the competency to do the job. Or-

Drew McLellan:

Or the motivation to do the job, right?

Steve Lowisz:

Yeah.

Drew McLellan:

Yeah.

Steve Lowisz:

Without question. So, we actually look at it, what we call the core four. So, there’s two sets of cores four that I think should be in your job description. And without question needs to be part of your interview process. And this is where agency owners, they just never been trained to do this.

Drew McLellan:

Right. Tell us about the core four.

Steve Lowisz:

So, there’s two pieces to it. So, the first one is core four production. And that’s what I think about when I say, “Hey, what can the candidate do for me?” So, there’s four pieces, obviously, to core four production. Number one is capacity. And you already mentioned it. This is skill. They have the skill to do the job. The easiest one to determine if they have, again, we hire… we do a really good job of vetting for skill, because we only fire 11% of our people for skill.

Number two is this idea of character. Now, you call it motivation. Motivation is somewhat, you got to be careful with that because motivation tends to be temporary. Character-based on past performance tends to be a good indicator of future performance. You’ve heard that saying before interviewing, right?

Drew McLellan:

Yup, yup.

Steve Lowisz:

So, based on what they’ve done and the questions that you asked to determine what they’ve done at previous employers, do they have the character? Have they shown the character to do the job? That’s number two.

Drew McLellan:

And so, the character would be things like are they a self-starter, do they take criticism or praise? Is that what you’re talking about when you say character?

Steve Lowisz:

Those are some of the pieces to it, but go even further than that, right? So, look at their past, where they’ve worked before, and ask some open-ended questions around difficult situations that they’ve dealt with and how did they deal with it. They run for the hills? Did they quit? Or, did they actually address this?

Drew McLellan:

Did they stay late? Did they take a hand on weekend?

Steve Lowisz:

Yeah.

Drew McLellan:

Right. Okay.

Steve Lowisz:

Exactly. So, it starts to give you a sense of the character, which is something we often fire for. So, that’s number two. Number three, and you reference this is what we call competencies. You call it soft skills. They’re somewhat the same, but there’s competency for the job. And the number four is culture, which is really competency for the company. And there’s a big difference between the two. So, competency for the job, if I’m in a sales role, if I’m new business development for the agency, I better know how to develop relationships.

And it’s pretty easy to ask questions on how they’ve done it and what was the result of that? Right? So, you can get the competencies for the job, the killer. How do you know if somebody fits your culture?

Drew McLellan:

Right. How do you-

Steve Lowisz:

The killer.

Drew McLellan:

Yeah.

Steve Lowisz:

And the reason it’s a killer is I get two things happen here. Most agency owners, and this goes beyond just agency owners, they can’t describe their culture if their life depended on it. In a simple way, what I hear is, “Well, we’re Google-esque. We have bean bag chairs.” That doesn’t describe your culture. Or people are not-

Drew McLellan:

Because we need to have an Ikea credit card.

Steve Lowisz:

Yeah. That’s not culture. And it’s an overused term. And I even hate to use it to a certain extent, but there are certain things in the DNA of your company the way it exists today. Now, what I often get from business owners, the agency owners, what their aspirational culture is. The problem with that is you have to be able to understand where you are today. And if you’re trying to change it, be honest with the candidate about trying to change it. But how do you define culture?

Drew McLellan:

Well, and is an owner even able to define culture? Because I suspect in most agencies, the culture is different when the owner is around and when the owner isn’t around.

Steve Lowisz:

No question about it. And it’s an ambiguous term. So, how do you get it measurable? How do I measure my culture fit? And often you have to look at the past. So, if you look at the people in your organization right now that are successful across the board that’s specific to creative or copy or anything along those lines, but across the board, and you look at those that have failed, right? What’s the difference? What is the ones that are successful?

What did they have, in your mind, in your opinion, because some of it is opinion-based, but you can quantify it that the people that were not successful, that they’re gone. So, I’ll give you an example of that. In our group of companies, we have five pieces that are innate to our culture of the organization. One of them is this idea of open to change. Now, it seems esoteric, but let me give you an exact example of this. Because of the industry we’re in being in people, people change all the time, tools to find people change all the time.

We have to be at the cutting edge of that, right, just like you in the agency space have to be at the cutting edge of agency world.

Drew McLellan:

Right.

Steve Lowisz:

Marketing, advertising, all that other stuff. So, we have to try new tools, and new things, and new concepts all the freaking time. In order to do that, we have to have our team execute. So, I could come in today and say, “We’re going to try this new tool. Figure it out, get it done. And let’s see if we want to launch it to our clients.” Right. In our shop, if somebody isn’t comfortable with trying new things all the time, they will fail if they…. even if they have the skills, the competencies, and the character.

Drew McLellan:

Because they freak out.

Steve Lowisz:

You got it.

Drew McLellan:

Yeah.

Steve Lowisz:

And that’s the way we need to look at culture of our organization. It’s not good. It’s not bad. It just is. And you need to quantify it in four or five competencies that you’re looking for that you can ask a question about and get a specific answer. If you can’t get a specific answer, don’t know what you’re looking for, you’re going to mishire.

Drew McLellan:

Yeah. Okay. So, those are the four core principles of production.

Steve Lowisz:

Correct.

Drew McLellan:

Are there core four purpose?

Steve Lowisz:

Yeah, there’s a core four purpose. Now, you’re getting into what’s driving the candidate.

Drew McLellan:

Okay.

Steve Lowisz:

So, we first looked at, “What are they going to do for me, do they fit for me?” Now, I got to figure out, “Can I address the needs of the candidate?” But in recruiting, what do we generally do? It’s all about us. Right? We forget about the person on the other end of the phone or video or interview, and we’ve got to learn about them. And this has been a challenge when I train agency owners on how to interview like, I don’t care about them. I want to know what can they do for me. Not in this market, you’re not going to be able to do that. So, there’s-

Drew McLellan:

Right. Well, especially if you want them to stick around.

Steve Lowisz:

Yeah.

Drew McLellan:

So, you may be able to hire them but if you want them to be happy and to stay. And for many owners, the longevity of your staff and that stability, not only is that great for you as an owner, but it’s great for your clients. They love it. So, there’s inherent value.

Steve Lowisz:

Yes.

Drew McLellan:

And a lot of small businesses. I’m sure this is not true, just the agencies. There’s so much tribal knowledge that we don’t actually write down that we just have in our heads that when you have a revolving door of staff, all of that tribal knowledge keeps leaving the door.

Steve Lowisz:

And we look at that process that you just described, right, as independent processes. So, over here, we’re going to go hire and recruit the right person. Over here, we’re going to try to develop the right person. And over here, we want to retain the right person. And we look at those as three different steps. They’re not. To do them the right way, you got to go all the way back to what we’re talking about now on this core four purpose and identify what’s their driver because you’re going to use that to develop them, use that to retain them, preserving the right candidate, right?

Drew McLellan:

Right.

Steve Lowisz:

So, let’s look at these. And these are really simple. So, on the production side, we had our four seats. On the on the purpose side, we’re going to have our four piece and are really simple things. And then, there’s a follow-up set of questions that I’ll describe. So, number one is what I call pain. And that’s the most common thing that we’ll go after. What if somebody have, right now that they want to get rid of? So, if you’ve got a candidate that’s interviewing with you, Drew, that you want to find out what’s the motivation for them to interview, something’s going wrong where they are. Right?

Drew McLellan:

Right. Yeah.

Steve Lowisz:

Money, the boss, work hours, projects, host of things. We generally hit that one and we exploit it. We focus only on the negative stuff. Right? Because as marketers or as advertising, that’s what we’re trained to do.

Drew McLellan:

Sure.

Steve Lowisz:

We focus on the negatives. Do we not?

Drew McLellan:

Right, right. Let’s solve the problem. Yes, yeah.

Steve Lowisz:

So, we hit the problem. But what happens is we forget about the other pieces. So, number two is what I call pleasure. What do they have now that they absolutely need to keep? Now think about that. They joined the last company for a reason. They stayed for two years, three years, four years for a reason. But we forget about asking the right questions to really determine why.

But think of the scales here. You may find one thing that they have pain about that drove them to you. There may be three things that keep them there that if you don’t address which ways the scale is tilting.

Drew McLellan:

Yeah, yeah. Well, and again, it’s always easier to stay put than to leave. So, you’ve got to give them pretty strong motivation, right?

Steve Lowisz:

Well, you don’t want to give them the motivation. You want to uncover the motivation. You get this in sales and marketing and so forth, right?

Drew McLellan:

Yeah.

Steve Lowisz:

So, let’s identify the pain and let’s make sure it’s real. Let’s identify the pleasure, something they have they want to keep. Let’s identify the pursuit, which is different. It’s what do I not have now that I want to get.

Drew McLellan:

Okay.

Steve Lowisz:

You have to have all three of these. And then, number four is personal. And this one, we’ve got to be a little bit more particular about because it’s things we can’t control. For example, I was talking to a creative director last week, who has some limitations only because she has a special needs child at home. Doesn’t make him a good candidate, a bad candidate. It’s just a fact of the matter is, there certain requirements. It’s a personal thing we have to understand.

But it also starts to identify that’s a big part of their purpose in life. So, we have to know all four of those. Now, there’s a simple way to get to all four. And you’ve got to ask the same four questions of the four. So, this is what I call core four probe. Now, number one, the facts of the situation. What’s drawing them? So, if it’s pain, what’s the facts of the pain? I don’t care about the feelings right now. All I want to know is what are my facts. So, what is that specific thing driving that person at that point? Just give me the what. Number two, give me the why.

So, I’m really upset with my boss. That’s why I’m looking to leave. Help me understand why. What’s that boss doing? Because you start to uncover how that individual, that employee, thinks about their boss, interacts with their boss, what’s important to them, what’s not important? So, number one, what. Number two is this idea of why. Number three is how am I going to fix this thing? Right? So, here’s the what that I have right now.

Here’s the why I’m ticked off about it or happy about it. Here’s what I’m going to do to address it. I’m either going to leave, I’m going to ask for a raise, I’m going to ask for… go to a different department, what have you. And the last one is when.

When am I planning on doing this? Am I doing it now? Am I ready to really make a move? If they pay me enough, I’ll at least stay till the end of the year. We have to understand all those motivation pieces to get to that core four purpose.

Drew McLellan:

So, when you’re asking those questions, which I think a lot of times candidates dance around some of the answers to that. How do you A, know if they’re telling you the truth and B, if you get a sense that they’re whitewashing their answer whatever of the four-piece that we’re on? How do I dig deep enough to actually get to the truth?

Steve Lowisz:

And that’s a great point, Drew, actually. We have a tendency to ask surface-level questions without the follow up. And the way to do this…. and is it 100% foolproof? Absolutely not. You’re dealing with people. Intrinsically, we’re all liars to a certain extent. We like to make ourselves look better than we really are.

Drew McLellan:

Per say in an interview, right?

Steve Lowisz:

Interview, Facebook. It doesn’t matter, right?

Drew McLellan:

Right.

Steve Lowisz:

We all try to do that. But it is about the series of questions. So, think about it. If you start a conversation off with… Drew, what’s working for you today? Tell me what’s working? How’s it going? What’s working? What’s not working? Why is it not working? What do you feel is missing? And you continue to go down a path of questions, ultimately, in most, not at all, but in most cases, if you start getting into what have you done to try to fix it. Why didn’t it work? Why did it work? You’ll get a sense of if they’re BSing you or not.

Drew McLellan:

Yeah, okay.

Steve Lowisz:

But we have a tendency to ask just the top surface-level and not continue drilling down. Drilling down is the key.

Drew McLellan:

How many conversations does it take to have identified these, the four cores of both purpose and production?

Steve Lowisz:

The production and the purpose is actually pretty easy. You can generally do it in one lengthy conversation, whether you’re doing it on the phone, before you’re bringing him in for an interview, or you’re doing it face-to-face, right? The key is to validate. So, if you’ve done it on the phone, at least to a certain level, doesn’t mean you don’t do it again when you bring him in. Often, we go to a different set of questions.

But if you follow the science of this with a little bit of art, it’s go back and validate and ask the same types of questions to uncover, again, the core four production, the core four purpose, what I call the baker’s dozen of questions. It’s 13 questions that drives you to the heart of things. It can be done in the first call. It can be done in the first meeting. Some, if you can’t get comfortable, you’re not getting the answers. First, I’d question, “Is that the right person in the first place?”

Drew McLellan:

Right, right.

Steve Lowisz:

But sometimes you do have to have a second or third meeting, especially if there’s multiple parties involved in making the decision.

Drew McLellan:

So, one of the things that if I’m listening to you, I’m thinking so many agencies today are, they’re structured differently than they used to be. So, used to be everybody was under one roof, and we all work together, and we played together. And now, for a lot of agencies, they’ve got either multiple offices, or a lot of them have virtual employees that they potentially physically have never met or they’ve only met during the interview process.

Is everything that you’re talking about the same when you’re hiring someone to work remotely away from the core team as it is if they’re going to work inside the core team?

Steve Lowisz:

So, what starts to change is the actual competencies that you’re looking for, right? So, a competency to do my job when I’m sitting there with you looking over my shoulder is one thing. The competency to work on my own to be able to ask questions to determine, “Can you do it? Are you as effective? Show me the proof that you are,” is a little bit different.” So, you’re going after the same thing, but you’re asking different questions about the exact same thing to determine,” Can you really work alone?”

Some people think it’s a great idea. But once they get into isolation of being alone, right, this is not something they’re happy with, but they don’t want to admit it. So, you’ve got to ask those questions on the front end about their ability to work alone, their own internal intrinsic motivation to get up every morning to get to work. How do they go about? What’s the routine? If they don’t have a routine in the morning, most of the time, they’re not very effective at working at home.

Drew McLellan:

Right. Because they have to be able to actually start the work. They have to have a process of actually going to work even if it just means you’re padding into your home office.

Steve Lowisz:

Yeah. We’ve studied this for years and years and years. And people that can say, “All right, I’ve got this routine. I get up at 6:15. I work out. I have my cup of coffee. I read the paper. I check my emails”, blah, blah, blah. They’re very good working at home most of the time, where it’s like, “Yeah, I get up at 6:30. I have my cup of coffee.” They tend not to be as effective working at home. Again, a broad-brush. It’s not in every situation. But there’s an indicator.

Drew McLellan:

Yeah. So, how do the generations play into all of this? So, I bring agency owners together, right? And I’ll tell you I can’t think of the last time I brought them together when someone didn’t show, some mean-spirited millennial video, okay? Some video about how awful millennial are. So, there’s this. So, this whole belief out there that people are… their behavior is different based on generations that their motivations are different.

Is that accurate? Are you seeing that? Is there a way for agency owners? Because I also know. I know plenty of agencies that have killer employees who happened to be millennials or whatever generation we’re talking about. So, clearly no generation is all good or bad. So, A, does it matter and B, how do you ferret out the good ones amongst the mix?

Steve Lowisz:

So, there’s a couple of things you said in there that are typical. And what it is, we have a certain stereotype generally speaking that we apply towards millennials, because it’s, your comment, and I hear this every day. But how do we find the good ones? There’s no difference in how you find the good ones whether they’re millennial or baby boomer or anything else in between.

The problem here is that we are always… most of the time, it’s been studied, we are starting with a negative connotation of what millennial meets. They’re entitled. They don’t work. They want to work three hours and get paid for eight every day. This is a constant-

Drew McLellan:

They want to travel abroad every other month.

Steve Lowisz:

Without question. And the reality of it is, is that all bad? So, let’s put into perspective. Now, as entrepreneurs, as agency owners, we need them there. We need them doing the work, because that’s how we make our money. We build so on and so forth. But does it make them bad that they’re driven by something different? So, let’s face it. You in my generation, we have the work ethic we have primarily because of our parents. That’s been studied. They teach us, we see it, we do it again.

Millennials have looked at this and said, “I don’t want to live to work. I’m going to work to live.” It’s not bad. It’s just different. And their perspective is a little bit different. So, it’s not a matter of good or bad. It’s how do you leverage the perspective they have to create value in your organization. Does that mean that you coddle them? No. Does it mean they have different motivators? Are they primarily motivated by money? Some are. There’s a stereotype that says most are not. They don’t care about it. They live in their parents’ basement. Not true.

I’ll challenge you on that one. So, it’s really about how much are you willing to bend to change your view of their view, so to speak. It’s not about good or bad, it’s about, “Is it right for your organization?” Is the purpose of that candidate, does it still fit with what you’re trying to create? Their work style may be a little bit different. And you put up with that.

Drew McLellan:

Well, and honestly, for a lot of agency owners and business owners, we’re going to have to find a way to work in multigenerational because the baby boomers are retiring. So, the choice is either hire younger employees or we close our business. So, we’ve got to figure out a way to that, right?

Steve Lowisz:

The agencies think of the work that you’re doing for your clients. A lot of their customers are baby boomers, because that’s where the next wealth, or I’m sorry, is the millennials, because that’s where the next wealth pot is, right? No matter how you look at it, the volume is going to be there. So, we have to leave.

Drew McLellan:

Well, and agencies also need the skill sets and the insights that millennials have because they look at the world from a different lens. And as Bill says, they grew up. They’re digitally native, all of those things. So, there is clearly value in that. So, how does a baby boomer owner find the common ground and work well with the millennial workforce that they have?

Steve Lowisz:

So, let’s start by going back to purpose. This is where it all starts tying together, right, Drew?

Drew McLellan:

Yes.

Steve Lowisz:

So, think about it. If I knew in my conversation with the candidate that they’re a millennial, doesn’t matter who they are, if I stick to my scientific script of identifying the core four purpose and I want to understand the pain. I want to understand the pleasure. I want to understand the pursuit. At that time, I can start to make my own judgment of, “Am I willing to accommodate some of those things? Can I see it from their perspective instead of my own perspective so becomes less of an issue when I actually go out and hire them?”

Here’s the problem. I’ve seen agency owners do that. I’ve worked with a lot of agency owners, and I’ve seen them where they say, “Yes, I’m willing to work with it.” They bring that individual on board. And then, our next six counseling sessions, I feel like a therapist because they’re complaining about the exact thing that the millennial said was their need. And they agreed that they’ll address it.

We have to be willing to change as much as they’re… they have to be willing to meet us halfway. And often we don’t do that. And we just throw them right back in the stereotype.

Drew McLellan:

Yeah. Yeah. It’s a huge frustration for lots of agency owners for sure. So, I know one of the things that you speak about a lot is different ways to find candidates. So, I want to dig into that. But first, let’s take a quick break. One of my favorite parts of AMI are live workshops. I love to teach. I love to spend two days immersed in a topic with either agency leaders, agency owners, or EAs and, or EA boot camps. But most of all, I love sharing what I’ve learned from other agencies from 30 years in the business and all the best practices that we teach.

If you have some interest in those workshops, they range from everything from money matters, which is all about your financial health of your agency to best management practices of agency owners to new business to EA boot camps and a plethora of other topics. Go check out the list and the schedule at agencymanagementinstitute.com/live training. Okay, let’s get back to the show. All right, we are back. We are talking about talent and finding, hiring, retaining the people that you need to grow your business.

And so, right before the break, I posed the question or I posed the topic of this idea of alternative strategies to find good candidates. So, today, agencies are either they’re running ads in the local ad clubs and all of that. They’re hiring, hired guns either whether it’s a placement firm or they’re buying people from the creative group or somewhere like that. They’re trawling LinkedIn. Talk to us about some ways that you’re seeing success or businesses have success in finding the right, great candidate.

Steve Lowisz:

So, let’s break it into two. Let’s look at the traditional approach and a better way to leverage the traditional approach. And then, we’ll look at a couple of nontraditional approaches. Is that fair?

Drew McLellan:

Yeah.

Steve Lowisz:

And this is a big topic in the agency world that I work with as well. Because think of the work that you guys do. You do your targeting, you do, you need analysis when you create your marketing pitches and so forth for your clients, you know the pain points and so forth. Now, flip that to candidates. You’re trying to attract candidates to your organization. But in many instances, you’re taking this pretty crappy job description and you’re posting it and hoping that it attracts creative, and copy, and digital people, and so on and so forth.

And it’s not a really good, right? You’re not even following the steps that you follow for your own client. It’s like shoe cobblers and you hear the word shoes.

Drew McLellan:

Right, yup.

Steve Lowisz:

We have a tendency to do the exact same thing. I see agencies do this all the time. So, it’s a traditional approach by posting, but think about how you would write an ad, a copywriter writes an ad versus a journalist. Job descriptions are written like a journalist wrote them, nothing bad. It’s just factual. Copywriter writes, there’s a call to action. There’s something exciting. They’re pointing out a pain of that particular demographic that they know is there. We don’t do that in the agency space on a consistent basis. So, let’s not forget that.

The other thing that we do is the community. So, like LinkedIn. You mentioned LinkedIn, right? So, we trawl on LinkedIn. We see somebody’s profile, and all we’re doing is using LinkedIn like a glorified database.

Drew McLellan:

Absolutely. Yep.

Steve Lowisz:

We’re sucking out of the community but we’re not putting anything back into the community. So, think about when you’re creating a social media presence for your own company for business development or for your clients. You’re trying to put into the community to create content that is interesting to people to keep that brand in front of them. Are you not?

Drew McLellan:

Sure.

Steve Lowisz:

Why don’t we do the same thing when we’re trying to attract employees, which is our biggest asset to our own organizations? We don’t follow the same spiel. We do it for our clients. We don’t do it for ourselves.

Drew McLellan:

So, give us some examples of how we would do that better.

Steve Lowisz:

Excellent. So, think about LinkedIn. There’s all these groups in LinkedIn, right? What if you created a group? If you’re constantly hiring digital talent and you create a group for digital talent, but instead of just saying, “Hey, I’ve got a job for you”, you start sharing ideas and articles and having others within that group around what they’re doing in digital and so forth in order to create a community.

Now, you go to the community where you’ve built credibility because you’re putting into the community when you ask about, “Hey, we now have this. This is what’s going on.” More people are apt to say, “Hey, I’d love to talk to you about that” as opposed to just going out there and saying, “Hey, Drew, I’ve got this really great job for you.” It sounds like every other approach. There’s a big difference between that.

A job description that says, “I’m looking for a copywriter, or I’m looking for a digital specialist that knows A, B, C, and D” is very different than saying, “Look, are you tired of being called a digital specialist but you’re still doing all this manual?” I’m just using examples, right?

Drew McLellan:

Yup.

Steve Lowisz:

Pointing out the pain, very practical difference, but we’ve seen applications or interest increased by as much as 100% by following the typical copywriting plans. Amazing. And we can do that with all of them. Now, that’s more traditional networking, traditional referrals. One of the best pieces for an agency to refer for. Referrals are best. It’s in the last longer studies showing they’re the cheapest, right? Now, if you want to go a little bit nontraditional, there’s a number of organizations out there which would build themselves as researcher, recruitment research.

Now, instead of just the database of names that are out there, this is very targeted and very specific where you say, “I want to recruit from one of these three agencies because of their specialty.” This organization, that organization will go in and identify every single copywriter, their personal contact information, their business contact information, email address, direct dials, phone numbers, all of that stuff in it.

And you end up finding 100% of the talent pool as opposed to this, a portion that’s on LinkedIn, a portion that’s on this website, a portion that’s in this group, and a portion that’s in that group.

Drew McLellan:

So, I want to make sure I’m understanding. What you’re saying is if you know that there are certain agencies that you in essence want to poach from, right? These are people who will go and get the contact information for those specific people for that specific job. And then, you can start to approach those people. Is that what you’re saying?

Steve Lowisz:

Yeah. In essence, they’ll give you the org chart of everybody doing that function within those specific targets. So, it’s a much more laser. Think about it as a laser-focused approach. Here’s the challenge. There’s a percentage of those people are not looking.

Drew McLellan:

Right. Sure.

Steve Lowisz:

As you open this up with, we’re not finding enough people, right? So, right now, about 20% to 30% are probably actively looking all the time, right? Another 30% to 40% are maybe looking and it was the right thing, and then the rest are like, “Yeah, I’m getting paid good. Economy’s great. I don’t need to leave.” Right? One of those. So, you have to be skilled enough, going back to some of the other things that we talked about to approach them, approach them the right way, and not focus on selling them a job.

Focus on engaging with them to build a relationship to see if that makes even sense to get into core four production, core four purpose in the job.

Drew McLellan:

So, what might that look like? So, if let’s say you’ve identified a social media manager that-

Steve Lowisz:

Yup.

Drew McLellan:

So, you have a list of them, right? So, how do I engage with them in a way that I can begin to assess whether or not they’re even open to having a discussion about a job?

Steve Lowisz:

So, let’s go through the common way and let’s go through maybe a little bit better way. So, I’m sure in your history, with your experience, somebody reached out to you in the past, Drew, and said, “Hey, I got a great opportunity I want to talk to you about. I saw your profile on LinkedIn and you’d be perfect for it.” In essence, that’s BS. Let’s think about it. They don’t know you. They don’t know anything about you. And nobody, agency owner or recruiter or hired gun is going to call up and say, “Hey, Drew, I’ve got a really crappy opportunity I want to talk to you about.”

Drew McLellan:

Right. Might not be a good fit for you. But let’s chat. Right.

Steve Lowisz:

So, think about the purpose of reaching out to somebody. You’re reaching out, first and foremost, not to sell them on your job, but to learn more about them because based on their social profile or wherever you got their name from, you already know much about it. So, think of the different approach of going in and saying, “Hey, Drew, I know that you’re the social media manager at ABC Company. We’ve never met before.

I’m calling to really, or I’m reaching out to you to find out more about you, next steps in your career”, assuming there are next steps. Stop, don’t say word. Next person who talks loses. Sales 101, Drew, sales 101, but it becomes not about me, the agency owner, the recruiter, the hired gun. Well, who does it become about?

Drew McLellan:

Yeah, right, the candidate.

Steve Lowisz:

It’s a very different approach that actually shocks candidates at times where they’re like, “What? You just want to get to know me?” And I’ve got an agency owner here in Southeastern Michigan that is the best recruiter that I have ever met. But he’s been an agency owner for the last 20 or 25 years. And this guy has got it down pat because he’ll never BS you.

It’s always about, “Drew, I saw your profile. I know nothing about you. It’s time for us to get to know each other. I want to learn more about what you’re going to do in the future.” Where that takes us, but I don’t know anything about you. And he’s very humble about it, 80% response rate, 80%.

Drew McLellan:

And how much time does, because I can hear the agency owners going, “Okay, that sounds like a lot of time.” So, how much time does he invest in that cold-calling relationship building?

Steve Lowisz:

So, it’s limited and a lot of it is done via email, or in mail, and so on. It’s not all done picking up the phone, because, let’s face it, we all hide behind our phones these days. So, he only does it for the senior most or the largest account positions that he has. He’s seen do it for everybody else. But I will tell you out of a… let’s say he works 50 hours a week, he’s probably spending 12 to 13 hours engaging.

But now when he has one of those positions open, he doesn’t have to hire a hired gun. He doesn’t have to go to his team. Literally picks up the phone and he’s got three or four people that have talked to him like that.

Drew McLellan:

So, again, the long game, right? It is an investment in the long game. So, as you’re telling this story, I’m thinking, “Okay, if I’m an agency owner, which I am, again, okay, not only am I poaching on other people. But that means other people are poaching in my people, right? So, I immediately go to, so what’s the defensive move of being the business owner that has a great team that knows that their people are probably being approached and potentially poached like we’ve just described?

Steve Lowisz:

Yeah. So, first, look at that as a compliment. Let’s start there, right. Because if you’ve assembled and develop that Rockstar team, people are going to come after you. They’re going to hear about the work you’re doing. And that initially is a compliment. It’s a pain because you may lose somebody. The flip side of that is understanding that particular candidate, because recruiting is one piece. Development and retention is something very different. They’re all tied, though.

Let’s talk about core four purpose. Again, if I understand the core four purpose in the beginning, I can sell to that, I can recruit them. When I’m developing them, I know where they want to go in terms of their pursuit so I’m going to develop them there. But I still run the risk of retention. Right?

Drew McLellan:

Well, I think sometimes agency owners, and again, I’m sure this is true of other businesses as well. But once you’ve made the sale, once that candidate has accepted the job, then in your head the sales job is over. And somehow there’s this flip of, “I don’t understand what they’re complaining about.” They make a good paycheck. They have all the new equipment. They had to work on good projects. Right? So, all of a sudden, instead of being the salesperson wooing the candidate. Now I’m like, the disgruntled boss, who’s like, “What are you complaining about?”

So, part of what I’m hearing you say is when we understand that our core purpose, that’s not a one and done conversation and it becomes part of our one-on-ones with them. It becomes part of the review process. It becomes part of their goal setting, perhaps.

Steve Lowisz:

Yup.

Drew McLellan:

And that’s helping them get to their purpose, right.

Steve Lowisz:

And that’s such an important piece. So, there’s this model that I call the power five that I think is innate to everybody. And the power five starts with an individual’s purpose, right. So, the first P is purpose. How do you identify what their purpose is? Some, it’s based on their faith. Some, it’s based on some other belief system, but there’s some belief system that everybody has that determines the decisions you make. Barna, everybody in this world works that way.

So, number one is, is purpose. If something is often that purpose, you know what it is because you hired them based upon that, and then you forget about it as you were describing, right?

Drew McLellan:

Yeah.

Steve Lowisz:

That’s when the complaints about, “You don’t pay me enough.” It really, when you boil a lot of these down that, especially that complaint, rarely is it truly the comp. It’s really something else coming back to the practical, which happens to become. If you pay me more, I’ll deal with more of your crap. Because you didn’t address my purpose like you said you were going to do.

So, it becomes a give and take, but that’s the foundation of every person on this earth is what’s their purpose or what they believe to be their purpose based on their belief system. Makes sense?

Drew McLellan:

Yeah.

Steve Lowisz:

So, that’s number one. Sometimes, it’s outside of our frame in terms of the office space, right? So, it’s, they work for us, they’ve got other things going on in life, even if we’re trying to address their purpose is you got this whole idea of person. So, you go purpose and then you go person, which is if I’m the person, right? So, I’ve got certain things about me that drive my health, so to speak, because if I’m not healthy, I can’t do my job. It could be something as simple as what I eat or workout. So, call it fuel and fitness. So, that’s person.

And then, you’ve got this third dynamic of people, which is called people, which would be family and friends. Is there something going on there? Now, you’ve got profession. So, it comes a little bit back to purpose, but think about it in terms of my calling versus the skill set that I have, and are you helping me develop those. And then, the last one happens to be profits, which is fun, and freedom, right? So, if one of those are out of whack on your circle of five, your job as the owner is to know which is difficult, because some of that’s really personal.

But how do you do that? So, you’ve got to be careful. You’ve got to have the relationship upfront that you’re going to focus on some of those things and help them through it. But if you’re not feeding the purpose, Drew, I don’t care if you feed all the other four, you’re not going to keep that employee and they’re going to leave.

Drew McLellan:

Well, and again, I think that gets to the one of the values, I think the benefits of being a small business owner. So, for me, 300 employees or less, but is that you have an opportunity to get to know those people and to invest that way. But again, a lot of agency owners like I’m a big proponent of one-on-one meetings, and I’ll have a lot of owners say to me, “I don’t have time for that.” And I’m like, “That’s a 20-minute investment every other week as opposed to trying to replace that person”. That’s a simple math problem for me.

Steve Lowisz:

You don’t have time not to do that.

Drew McLellan:

Right, absolutely. Make the time.

Steve Lowisz:

And I hear this, and that’s a really great point is I don’t have the time, I don’t have the time, I don’t have the time. Question becomes, okay. Let’s figure it out. Where are you spending your time? Why are you spending your time there? Usually it comes down to, because I don’t have the team to be able to do A, B, C, or D. So, it’s not that you don’t have the right time, it’s that you don’t have the right team to ultimately fill this or something along those lines.

Let’s first define what time means in their vernacular. And in most cases, it’s truly not a timing issue. It’s something else. We say this. We use this term all the time. You say it, I say it. Our people are our biggest asset. What are you going to spend the most time cultivating? Your people. And if you don’t have them at the top of your list, now, if you’re big enough agency, you really need to have your people trained your next layer trained to do the one-on-ones because you shouldn’t be doing it with everybody.

Drew McLellan:

No, of course not. Right.

Steve Lowisz:

Yeah. You do it with your reports, they do it with theirs. But it’s something that you have to train to make sure it’s happening. And as the agency owner, you better be the one leading that because you can’t tell your people to do it, you not do it.

Drew McLellan:

Right. Because, again, that’s the critical layer, if you lose your leadership team, now you really have to reinvent, right?

Steve Lowisz:

Yup. And if they see you not doing it, even though you tell them to do it, they’re not going to do it.

Drew McLellan:

Or they’re going to call it in right there, right?

Steve Lowisz:

Yeah.

Drew McLellan:

They’re going to do it, but they’re not going to follow the pattern or the rules or the process the way you want them to.

Steve Lowisz:

Most people don’t understand the value of it. They do it because their boss told them. You understand the value of it. And you go into that meeting with a purpose, that one-on-one with a purpose. This is what I want out of it. You keep doing that time and time again, even if somebody comes and says, “I’m going to offer you $10,000 more to do the same job you’re doing.” Most of the time, if they’ve got that connection, if their purpose is being met, or their view of their purpose is being met, the 10 grand is enough to swing it.

A 100 grand, we’re talking a different story. And it’s probably some out of whack anyways. Right?

Drew McLellan:

Right.

Steve Lowisz:

But money is the last piece in most cases. And it’s more prevalent with millennials than it even was with baby boomers. We value money and the results we get more traditionally than a millennial does. But it’s the first thing they’ll revert to when something else is out of whack.

Drew McLellan:

Right. Well, it’s the easiest conversation to have, right?

Steve Lowisz:

Practical.

Drew McLellan:

Yeah, yeah. So, I’m mindful of the time, but I want to make sure we talked about this. So, we’ve talked a lot about recruiting the team. What are some best practices for you in terms of keeping the right people and growing your people so that they stay long term? Because again, when I look across, I see the financials of all of the agencies that we work for. And when I look at the agencies that are most profitable, one of the commonalities among them is that they have a stability of staff.

And so, there’s a very practical financial reason why you want to have good people on your team and you want to keep them. So, what are some best practices around doing that?

Steve Lowisz:

Well, you just mentioned one of them. The ongoing one-on-ones with your direct reports is a nonnegotiable.

Drew McLellan:

Yep, I agree.

Steve Lowisz:

But it’s a matter of how you approach those one-on-ones. Because if it’s just a practice of we’re going to meet one, and how are things going, what’s going on, and there’s really no outcome or purpose behind it, it almost becomes redundant and it burns people out. If you go in with a purpose of, “Okay, I want to find out, these are the 13 questions I’m going to ask.” And there’s always going to be a task associated with it at the end, not that I’m going to do but that particular individual is going to do.

Then, they see that you’re investing them in them on a biweekly or a monthly basis, or whatever you happen to do. So, meeting, yes, one-on-one, yes. But the purpose of that meeting has to be defined and there has to be an objective and some type of result that comes out of it every single time. That’s number one. You have to be able to do that. Number two is the accolades, right. We have this tendency to make these big accolades in the office of saying, “Hey, this person did a great job, just landed this account.” And it’s generic in general.

The most impactful, again, studies will show this, take that one person aside, be very specific. “Hey, Drew, you just closed ABC Company and you did these three things exceptionally well.” That actually goes further in building that relationship than this big public accolade that’s general doesn’t mean crap. Those are two of the real big ones. The other one is, and we hide from this is direct feedback. We have a fear of collision with our best employees, because we’re afraid we’re going to lose them.

Drew McLellan:

Right. Yeah, I hear that all the time. You’re right.

Steve Lowisz:

Right. So, I don’t want to call that person out. They did such a great job but this one thing they keep doing over and over and over, I’ll just, I’ll deal with it. Right? When we do the studies on the employee side and we go to them and say, “Look.” You say these great things about your employer. What’s the one thing you wish they did differently? Almost 90% of them say, “Be honest with me. But lie with me in a constructive way.

But call me out when I need to be called out because as a person, I can’t improve unless I know what I’m doing wrong. And it scares us to death to do that to somebody.”

Drew McLellan:

Right. So, is there a right way to collide with our people? Is there a proper way to give feedback that is A, heard but feels the way that employee wanted to feel?

Steve Lowisz:

Yeah. And we’ve looked at these many times. And again, there’s a number of studies on it. I’ll give it to you in real simple terms, but I call it facts, feelings, focus, and fruits. Simple. Let me explain it. Facts, when you’re addressing it, don’t address the person. Address the facts of the situation. “Hey, Drew, A happened, B happened, C happened.” You didn’t say, “Hey, Drew, you did A, you did B, and you screwed up by not doing C.” That’s not the way you approach it. So, number one is deal just with the facts of the situation.

Drew McLellan:

Okay.

Steve Lowisz:

Okay. Number two is feelings will come up. You will see the other person slouch in their chair, get visibly upset, potentially even get on the edge of their chair like they’re going to be defensive.

Drew McLellan:

Or cry.

Steve Lowisz:

Or cry. And that happens a lot more than most people think, right? Because somebody is being honest about what’s going on. So, you have to be able to recognize the feeling and you don’t want to sympathize with them. But it’s okay to empathize with them. “Hey, Drew, I get it. You’re really upset. Stop. Don’t say anything else. I get it. I understand.” So, you’re disarming them by not going right back at him and trying to clobber him again.

So, deal with the facts, acknowledge the feelings, right? Now, let’s talk about where we want to take it at this point. So, we got facts, feelings. And ultimately, we want to get to the point of the fruit, focus and fruit, right? So, what do we want to do here? We need to address the situation. What’s the right thing? How do we want to address this situation and get the involvement of the person that you’re talking to? “So, here’s what happened. I get how you feel about it.”

What do you think we should do to address it? Why do you do that? Because it puts some of the ownership back on them?

Drew McLellan:

Absolutely.

Steve Lowisz:

The focus is now on them. So, you get the facts, feelings, focus, fruit. And then, ultimately, “Hey, Mr. or Mrs. Employee, what do you want out of this situation? What’s the endgame?” “Well, I want to save face with the client that I screwed up.” How are we going to do that? In that regard, where they’re part of the solution and you’re not attacking the individual. You’re pointing out the facts of what happened. It’s very disarming more so than saying, “Drew, you screwed up.” And so, follow that facts, feelings, focus, fruit.

Drew McLellan:

Awesome. So, when I kicked off the podcast conversation, I said, “Hopefully, we’ll have some pragmatic things.” And you certainly have given folks plenty of pragmatic tools. So, I am grateful for that. Thank you.

Steve Lowisz:

Of course.

Drew McLellan:

I only have gotten through about half of my questions, but we’re at the top of the hour. So, I need to let you get back to work and I need to let our listeners get back to work. So, I’m hoping that maybe you’ll come back and we can carry on the conversation down the road.

Steve Lowisz:

Happy to, it’s a big topic.

Drew McLellan:

It is a big topic. So, Steve, if folks want to learn more about your work and some of the things we didn’t get to today, what’s the best way for them to track you down?

Steve Lowisz:

There’s actually two places. The main site is Stevelowisz.com, S-T-E-V-E-L-O-W-I-S-Z.com. You can sign up for some, the blog. You can sign up for a bunch of free resources that I put out every week videos and so on. The other one is under Qualigence and it’s Q-U-A-L-I-G-E-N-C-E.com/recruiterfuel. And that one is important too, because it gives real practical ways how tos of deal with a candidate, address a candidate, address an employee, both of those are completely free. And you can get on the list, you get one video a week.

Drew McLellan:

Awesome. So, we will put both of those links in the show notes, so everybody, so if you’re driving your car or walking your dog, and you’re not jotting this stuff down, don’t worry, just come back to the show notes. And that information will be there. Steve, thank you very much for being so forthcoming with your advice, for being so practical in your counsel with us today.

I know that a lot of people are going to be able to take what we’ve talked about and really build up and strengthen the team that they have and also hopefully be able to recruit better employees faster so that they can keep building out their team. So, thank you very much for that.

Steve Lowisz:

Great to have been part of it.

Drew McLellan:

Okay, gang. This wraps up another episode of Build A Better Agency. Remember that every week we give away something free from one of our podcast guests. So, many of them are authors or they have courses, and they’re very generous to give us things to offer to you for free. So, all you have to do is go to agencymanagementinstitute.com/podcastgiveaway. Sign up once, and then your name is in the drawing every single week.

And we are giving away literally SEAtS to live courses, books, all kinds of stuff from our podcast guests and from AMI. So, don’t miss out on that opportunity. In the meantime, if you’re looking for me, you know how to track me down. It’s [email protected], or you can go over to the website and fill out the contact form if you have a specific question. Always happy to interact and hear what you’re thinking about. And I will be back next week with another guest to help you build an agency that you want to run and profit from.

I’ll talk to you soon. All right, that wraps up another episode of Build A Better Agency. I can’t tell you how much I love spending this time with you. Thanks so much for listening. Hey, speaking of thanks, another way we want to give thanks is we’ve built a new tool that I would love you to check out.

We’re calling it the Agency Health Assessment. And basically, you’re going to answer a series of questions and based on those answers, the tool is going to tell you in which aspect of your business maybe you need to spend a little extra time and attention to take your agency to the next level. We’ve identified five key areas that really indicate an agency’s health and we’re going to help you figure out where you need to spend a little more time.

To get that free assessment, all you have to do is text the word assessment to 38470. Again, text the word assessment to 38470 and we will send you a link so you can do that at your leisure and hopefully that will give you some new insights and some direction in terms of your time and attention in the agency. In the meantime, as always, I’m around if I can be helpful, [email protected] And I will be back next week with another great guest and more things for you to ponder. Talk to you soon.

Speaker 1:

That’s all for this episode of AMI’s Build A Better Agency brought to you by HubSpot. Be sure to visit agencymanagementinstitute.com to learn more about our workshops, online courses, and other ways. We serve small to midsize agencies. Don’t miss an episode as we help you build the agency you’ve always dreamed of owning.