- My company has an agency football team.
- The new business team are the strikers.
- Account management are the midfielders.
- Client services are the defence and keeper.
- Every month is a new game against the opposition.
- A new client won is a goal for us.
- A client lost is a goal for the opposition.
- The objective is to win each game.
Sounds simplistic I know, but sometimes it is the simple analogies that work best. Research has certainly proved that giving people and organisations big long-term objectives can be counter-productive and you see this in football as well as business. How many times have you heard a manager being interviewed saying things such as ‘we will take it one game at a time’ and ‘we only worry about next week’. They are using very basic man management skills that sometimes get forgotten in agency life and new business in particular.
If you say to your new business team ‘your objective is to win £2m of billings in the next financial year’ then that is a very tough goal. So break it down. ‘your objective for THIS week is to secure two qualified leads’ if, for example, you know from your KPIs that you will need 100 good leads per year to achieve the goal of £2m billings increment.
It also focuses them on the KPI’s, which stops them from thinking ‘maybe I can get that £2m by being lucky and going for one really clients’ when we all know that is unlikely.