Thursday, February 25, 2010

Will Madison Avenue become Tokyo?

"Toyota had lost sight of quality in its quest for quantity." --Akio Toyoda

Eventually nearly every business faces a quandary. How do we do what's made us successful more often and in more places so we can make more money? For a while, you resolve to hire the best people. You inculcate them in your culture. You rally them and they perform. It works. You get bigger and better.

But then, inevitably, the talent pool runs dry. So, because your shareholders and country homes are clamoring for more cash, you begin to lower your standard. You accept lesser people. You chasten your ambition. You segregate. You say things like "we have accounts that win us awards and other accounts that make us rich."

You continue to grow. You continue to acquire accounts that make you richer. You take your eye off the awards accounts because of the massive amounts of revenue coming from the rich accounts.

The downward continues. Your level of talent begins to match the quality of your accounts.

And all of a sudden, you wake up one morning and you suck.

No comments: