This is the first post in a series on the Agency Freedom Manifesto.
Most agency owners start their business with a vision of freedom.
They want to be free from the bureaucracy of corporate or they want to be free from the time-for-money trap of freelancing.
At the beginning, the agency is the vehicle that will deliver the freedom they desire. With their freedom they will spend more time with family, give back to their community, and launch additional ventures.
Soon, however, this dream hits hard times.
The dark clouds of client fires and team turmoil rolls in.
The owner finds themselves constantly being pulled back into client work despite hiring a team and telling clients things need to change.
The business that was meant to deliver freedom has turned into their master.
So what is the way out?
The first thing to understand is this isn't the owner's fault. It is the natural result of operating a broken business model.
The journey to shifting your agency business model starts with a mindset shift: Your business exists outside of yourself.
Your business isn't you and you are not your business.
Your business is a vehicle designed to serve you. But to serve you, you need to have clarity on a few things:
- What do you want out of life?
- Who do you want to be?
- What type of impact do you want to have?
You’re not the victim.
It isn’t your client’s fault. It isn’t your team’s fault.
If something isn’t working, if something doesn’t feel right, you have the power to change it.
As a business owner, your hands are on the wheel. That means that you can steer the ship.
This mindset shift will first just a change in the way you view yourself. You'll still be the one sitting in the seat and pulling the levers.
But with that picture you’re better equipped to make decisions.
You can ask yourself the question:
"Does every decision I make, every team member I hire, every client I agree to help, every message I put out into the world support the mission of the company?"
Only when the agency owner's needs are met can they craft an amazing client experience and build a thriving agency culture.
Your company is an asset that exists to serve you. Treat it like one.