February 2021 at Agency Hackers

Here’s what’s coming up for Agency Hackers members this month. If your agency isn’t a member yet, sign up here.

Client Services Mastermind

11am, Friday 5th February 2021

Calling all client services heroes! Join our monthly session for anybody with client services or account management responsibility. Drop in and meet other people doing your job at different agencies.

IT’S NOT ME, IT’S YOU: Why It’s Important to BREAK UP with Tricky Clients

One bad client can make you hate your job. One bad client can make you not want to come to work.

Putting up with difficult people is all part of the job – but when things start to negatively impact you and your team it’s often necessary to resign them.

This is a discussion all about the negative impact of tricky clients, how you approach firing a client, and the red flags to look out for in the future.

We have some people already lined up to contribute – but we’re expecting you to chip in too. Join us!

⏰ 11.30am, Wednesday 3rd February 2021


What Is It Really Like to Be a Woman in An Agency?

This is a monthly session where you can to talk to fellow female agency leaders and creatives.

This month our moderator is Gemma Ballinger, managing director of OutputShe’s recently taken over the running of the agency from three male founders, alongside creative director, Johanna Drewe.

We’ll be chatting about allyship:

  • Do you feel you need to be a role model for other women?
  • How do you become a role model – and how do you cope with the pressure that may come with this?
  • How do you look out for and support other women in your agency?

⏰ 2pm, Monday 8th February 2021

WARM WELCOME: Levelling Up Your Virtual Onboarding Process

When you’ve hired someone new, how do you introduce them to the team and integrate them into your culture – without an office space in which to do it?

Daniel de la Cruz, founder of Polymensa, has been conducting some interesting research into virtual onboarding. We’ll be chatting to Daniel about the three main takeaways of a new report he’s about to release:

• How to create a ‘best in class’ virtual onboarding process
• Insights into the ‘pre-boarding’ stage, and how elaborate this can be
• What other things agencies can do to help new employees integrate remotely

⏰ 2pm, Tuesday 9th February 2021

How to Develop a Strong Service Proposition

Are you an agency that DOES something… or one that OFFERS something?

Crafting a proposition positions you as an expert in your field. It could be the difference between dabbling in something and OWNING your space.

Join this discussion with Manifesto’s Louise Lai on creating a proposition to get your message, product or idea landing.

We’ll also hear from other agencies who’ve developed a robust method around their work.

⏰ 11.30am, Wednesday 10th February 2021

HR / People Mastermind

2pm, Wednesday 10th February 2021

Calling all ‘people people’. Join our monthly hangout for HR and people folk. Share what you’re working on and meet other people in your role at different agencies.

SINGLE SOURCE OF TRUTH: How Can You Transform Your Data?

Data used to be an asset – but now it increasingly feels like a BURDEN.

Do you worry your agency don’t have a “one version of the truth”? Instead, are you managing several ‘islands’ of data?

“Data is a problem in pretty much every organisation,” explains Helen Tanner, founder and CEO of Data3. “You tend to have lots of people messing around with an Excel spreadsheet trying to manually patch things together.”

In this session, Helen will help you finally start to get a grip on your agency’s data.

⏰ 11.30am, Thursday 11th February 2021

BUMPS AND BRUISES: Why Selling An Agency Isn’t Always The Smoothest of Rides

What’s it like to sell your agency to a bigger business?How does it feel when you have a boss again?

Lisa Paasche resigned as CEO of Verve after a three-year earn-out in late 2020. “The freedom is such a relief – I was completely mentally drained,” she admits.

Lisa started Verve in 2009, and sold it to Omnicom in 2017.

“Being within an organisation that is very different to how I did things was very challenging for me. It’s like being an alien. I was so aware of not talking like them, behaving like them or pitching like them.”

Don’t miss Lisa’s story if an earn-out is likely to be part of your future.

⏰ 11.00am, Friday 12th February 2021

Operations Mastermind

2pm, Friday 12th February 2021

This one is for the operations folk amongst you to check-in and compare notes with process people at other agencies.

PLAY NICELY: How Do You Manage Inter-Agency Collaborations?

Increasingly, clients are avoiding putting all their eggs in one basket. But how do agencies plan for and manage inter-agency relationships on the same project?

How do you manage the dynamic of working with other agencies?

This is a discussion for Agency Hackers members to share
how this collaboration has worked for them, how it can benefit your agency, and how best to work alongside specialist agencies on the same project without being at loggerheads with each other.

11.00am, Tuesday 16th February 2021

Marketing & New Business Mastermind

11am, Wednesday 17th February 2021

This is your chance to check in with other marketing and new business minds and see what everyone’s up to.

[Postponed – new date TBC!] Harnessing the Power of Saying No

Note: this event has been postponed. We’re working on rescheduling it – stay tuned!

How do you reject clients constructively and fairly?

We’ll be joined by Jonathan Ford, founding partner and group creative director at Pearlfisher, to discuss the positive benefits of setting boundaries and saying no, rather than bowing to the pressure of losing work

“There’s a reputation that comes with saying no,” explains Jonathan Ford, group creative director of Pearlfisher. “It saves time, money and wasted conversations.”

⏰ Date and time TBC

The Positive Effects of Career and Wellbeing Coaching

Burnout and lack of confidence is rife within agencies. How can you combat these problems and boost your employees’ wellbeing?

In this session, we’re talking to Nikki Gatenby about the positive impact coaching can have on your employees – and the strength of your agency.

In the session we’ll be discussing the positive benefits of coaching with Nikki, and asking how easily it can be implemented across your agency.

11.30am, Thursday 18th February 2021

Buying Success: Building an Agency Collective

When you run an agency you face a choice: build or buy?

Like a lot of agencies these days, Daniel Andrews, CEO of The Tree, decided on the latter.

“By acquiring complimentary agencies as part of a collective, it will accelerate growth for us even quicker – and ultimately have more impact on our clients.”

Is building an “agency collective” something you should be thinking of too?

We’ll be talking to Daniel about his collective’s vision and goals, the kind of agencies he’s looking to target next, and how he has managed to continue his success despite working from home.

⏰ 11am, Friday 19th February 2021 

What Difference Can A Podcast Make To Your Agency?

It’s easy to start a podcast, but how do you actively engage your audience?

Are you jumping on the bandwagon or will a podcast genuinely benefit your agency’s progress and standing?

We’re in discussion with Kelly Molson of Rubber Cheese and John Griffin of Pack to talk about the ways in which you can evolve your podcast and use it as a tool to drive leads, build rapport and make a name for yourself in your sector.

 ⏰ 11.30am, Monday 22nd February 2021

SHARP FOCUS: How Creating a Strong Brand Proposition Helped My Agency Thrive

“We were just another ‘high-end’ design agency. We didn’t have a point of differentiation“ says Joe Perkins, managing director at Chaptr.

“We thought our work alone was enough to win us a deal.”

However, Joe started to find it harder and harder to justify their price point in competitive pitches. He realised that what they needed was a brand proposition.

“The sales process has been completely different, and it’s so much easier to talk about. Now, we feel confident we can justify a premium price point.”

Joe will be talking to us all about owning what you do, making sure you and your team are on the same page, and how a strong brand proposition helps to create tangible marketing strategies and win competitive pitches – even if you’re more expensive than your competitors.

⏰ 11am, Tuesday 23rd February 2021

IMMERSE YOURSELF: What Can Your Agency Gain from VR and Immersive Technology?

Should your business be doing more in VR?

“Because of the pandemic, everyone needs different ways of communicating their product, service or proposition. Immersive tech, or virtual visualisation, couldn’t be more relevant,” says Sol Rogers, CEO of REWIND – a leading VR agency.

As technology develops and advances, immersive technology is becoming more popular.

⏰ 11am, Wednesday 24th February 2021

Finance Director Mastermind

2pm, Wednesday 24th February 2021

This is our monthly session for anybody in an agency finance role. Swap stories and get advice from other people doing a CFO, Finance Director or similar role in an agency.

Maintaining Agency Culture in a World of Zoom

A happy, thriving agency culture is vital. But when everyone is confined to video calls, how do you keep the happy juice flowing?

“People are losing their identities as employees of a specific company,” says IIH Nordic boss Steen Rasmussen. “They only see their colleagues briefly online, and an online meeting is much more merciless. People join at the last second, they leave abruptly when they have another meeting – the social aspect of meetings has disappeared.”

We’ll be talking to Steen in more depth about the changes his agency had to make to keep their office culture alive and kicking, adapting a people-centric approach to the digital world of remote working, and how they continued to be successful during the pandemic.

If you’re struggling to keep your team happy and motivated third time round, this is the one to join.

⏰ 11.30am, Thursday 25th February 2021

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