At a recent CEO Stars meet-up, around a few drinks, the topic of ‘getting rich’ came up among eight agency owners. We tossed around the various tips – some were highly possible, and one was a sure bet.
The definition of getting rich wasn’t to have enough money for a stately mansion or a Lamborghini, but everyone agreed that ‘rich’ was trading the hours for dollars for a place in the mountains or on the beach – and not worrying about an income and maybe then, just being able to do the things you never got around to doing in life. Since none of us expected a pile of money to fall from the sky, we tossed around some of the other ways this may happen.
- Sell your agency for big bucks: As glamorous as that sounds, this only happens to a lucky few. Can you say ‘pipe dream?’
- Invest in a start-up or a product that’s on the rise; one you have control of affecting its success.
- Become famous. Brand yourself, develop your story, write a book and go on the speaker circuit. Then, be choosy and consult to those who see value in you. Charge at least $5,000/day.
While the above three (and I may have missed a few) may sound whimsical at first, they’re all entirely feasible.
However, we did get serious and compiled our own list to accelerate the chances of making the big money.
- Run your agency like a business with a focus on making a profit.
- Budget accordingly to make a profit for yourself and be sure to take it.
- Invest your profit in an investment portfolio.
- Control your business costs like a hawk.
- Keep an eye on staff billable and non-billable productivity.
- Be aggressive (not timid) in your pricing. Don’t under-estimate your value.
- Hire a talented team that enjoys working with each other.
- Determine your agency’s story of positioning and differentiation.
- Determine what you have to offer that can remedy a clients’/prospects’ problems and accelerate their growth
- Generate more revenues from current clients (organic growth)
- Learn the proper way to ask for referrals.
- Learn how to convince and persuade. You are the expert, not your client.
- Lead your clients; don’t be subservient to them.
- Narrow-cast your new-business prospect list and convert them to ‘communities.’
- Be ‘famous’ for something – in either your geographical area or your category of expertise.
- Have excellent client success stories and communicate them in an amazing ‘story’ manner.
- Blow your own horn; no one’s going to do it for you.
- Have a support team of agency peers – peer power – to share opportunities and experiences. No one knows it all.
- In good times, take as much money as you can and invest it with a reputable financial manager.
- Purchase your own building. Don’t throw your dollars away by leasing space.
Was anything left out? Go ahead and add to it, if you wish.