Efficiency is the Goal
As featured in the PHILADELPHIA BUSINESS JOURNAL
Even with all of the technology in the world at the disposal of so many companies, time and again I witness inefficiencies that could easily be fixed. Ultimately, if it’s true that “time is money,” it’s amazing to me that established companies seem to be their own worst enemies, delaying execution with marathon meetings and a lack of decisiveness.
One of the foundational pillars of my firm is efficiency with everything we do. This does not mean reckless – actually quite the opposite. It’s about the relentless pursuit of creativity delivered in an abridged timeframe.
How do we do it?
Re-defining the ‘meeting.’ I don’t know whoever said a meeting must be one or (yikes!) two hours, but it just isn’t necessary. Here, a 30-minute meeting might be ten minutes too long. It is inherent in our culture that there is far more accomplished in bite sized meetings—five minutes here, ten minutes there—as we drive towards our clients’ goals together.
Make the space for time saving. The only door in our office is to a conference room. Otherwise, we are steps away from each other – no need to knock. We set this platform up nine years ago. In this time period, it has been encouraging to see other companies catch up to the idea that offices create unnecessary boundaries – as they do!
ABA: Always Be Available. When a colleague needs me to answer a question, review creative, or work through a challenge, it’s never, “let’s talk in an hour.” Unless someone is on a phone call or up against a major deadline, assistance is provided at that very moment. This is the core of our culture. Thus, whoever needs a ‘check in’ or direction prior to moving ahead is not sitting there in neutral. A (still) hilarious phrase we’ve used for years is “Right meow!”
“Execution is the chariot of genius.” This is the famous quote from William Blake that is at the bottom of my email signature, and it will remain there. Nothing makes me grit my pearly whites like ‘ready, aim, aim, aim, aim…’ You get the picture. I feel that you can be a perfectionist without exhausting yourself—and everyone—involved on a project, while wasting so many precious hours. Nothing is as powerful as taking decisive action. All “Cats” here are empowered to do just that. “Trust yourself” is one of my favorite phrases, and I use it often.
It’s the little (big) things. Not every day is picture perfect, and it’s crucial to make time to laugh, share a story, and forward a great new spot that hit the streets or a kind compliment from a client. After all, nothing feeds creativity like a jolt of fun, energy, and kindness. In actuality, this creative energy actually feeds efficiency (subject for an upcoming post!).
Let’s face it, when you have an agency name like ours, you had better adhere to these golden rules. Slow dogs we are not!
– P. Madden, Top Cat