Agency. Client. We’re All One Team.
I’ve been on teams my whole life. Sports teams. Agency teams. Brand teams.
The most successful teams I’ve been on pull together toward a common goal and communicate well. This is why the clichéd us vs. them, Agency vs. Client mentality that is so prevalent in the marketing world has always been so baffling to me. It seems we’re all missing the obvious point…we’re all on the same team.
My ice hockey team won a national championship when I was 15. Like any team, we had our imperfections, we had our disagreements, but we all had a common goal of winning. We also communicated extremely well on the ice, and that let us put the puck in the net and win games.
Having worked on both the Agency and Client side of marketing, I think it is clear that the dynamic between Agency and Client is very much like that of my old hockey team. There are imperfections, there are disagreements, but we all have a shared goal of creating great work that drives results. Although sometimes, knowing we have a common goal isn’t enough. Sometimes we need to go deeper and remember we are all team members, and we need to treat each other that way.
Communication is key to a successful team, and there are two simple things we can all do.
- Assume positive intent. If the Client or Agency lets you down, remember that it wasn’t on purpose. We are all working toward a common goal of great work, and no one wants to miss the mark on that.
- Be empathic. Speak with compassion to others. Maybe a Client has not provided feedback on time because he or she is handling a fire drill for a product launch. Maybe the Agency contact is delayed in responding because he or she has been in meetings for four consecutive hours. Put yourself in the other person’s shoes and be empathic when communicating with each other.
When there are approximately 3 million Google results for “empathy in the workplace” and more than 1 million Google results for “positive intent,” you know these are successful tools. The American Marketing Association, Executive Diversity Services Inc. and other leading voices on the topic of communication include these two elements in their curriculum.
The thing I’ve come to enjoy most about being on the Marriner team is the idea of creating results-driven work “within a basic generosity of spirit” is woven into the fabric of our Agency through our mission and vision. When you’re working with Marriner, your team and our team are all one team.
Teamwork is an essential part of what we do at Marriner. Contact us to see how the power of collaboration can benefit you.