Building an Agency is Easy - If You Have a Documented Vision
The most important part of starting an agency is having a good vision. With my first 2 agencies, that vision was lacking, primarily because it's considered inappropriate to communicate a vision that consists primarily of "I want to sell this company for as much money as possible." With Distill, I wanted to do things differently.
For starters, I wanted to build the agency without the desire to sell it down the road. That would allow me to focus on establishing a great infrastructure, process and culture. This wasn't just a mind-trick; I really have no intentions of selling Distill, ever.
Next, I sat down and brainstormed the concepts that I thought knew would make that vision a reality. Here's the actual, original, unedited document that resulted from that brainstorm:
Distill Vision Notes (23 KB)
Reading back through this document today, what I find most interesting is that it describes Distill perfectly (except for the part about revenue split with Brandon). After a year and a half, it's still how I run the company. And even without reading that document once during the past year, I just managed to build a blog and (phil)osophy that is perfectly aligned with the ideas I jotted down 18 months earlier.
My point is this: when you start (or reinvent) your agency, begin with a well-conceived vision. Write that vision down. Share it with others. If it's truly a viable vision that's congruent with your personal values, you won't have to work to achieve it -- it will just happen.
What are your thoughts? Don't just sit back and read... tell the rest of us what your vision for your agency is. Use the comments field below. -P
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