Monday, January 28, 2013

The rule of threes.

Years ago I wrote in this space that it makes sense, in my opinion, to divide the agency world in threes.

1. There are finders--those people who find new business, find great assignments, find the next big things.
2. There are minders. The people who keep things on an even keel. They mind the business and keep clients happy and accounts humming.
3. There are grinders. These are the folks who keep their heads down and do the actual work it takes to keep and account running.

For me, the ideal agency employee has elements of each of these -ers. And the ideal agency lets its employees grow by expanding their -ers. Further, if you have someone on staff who excels at none of those three, you ought to think about nixing them.

Of late, however, I've noticed a different trinity we have to deal with. This, I stole from Paul Krugman of "The Times."

1. There are makers. These are the people who create what we sell. They make the sites. The ads. They deal with the rounds of revisions.
2. There are takers. These people swirl around the makers like flies around shit. They're there to swoop in when the going is good. It was their strategy (which the makers weren't aware of) or their leadership that was the cause of the project's success.
3. Finally there's our biggest group, the fakers. These are the deck doers. The meeting callers. The people who say 'I don't have the bandwidth.' They're there to look busy, to sit in judgment, and to be 'too busy' when there's work to be done.

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