Trusting people to run my agency

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Adam Pritchard is a former agency owner and ecommerce platform founder, full of curiosity and appetite for knowledge, just to be better than the next person. Football coach and philosopher with about 27 axes to grind.

Biggest fuck up

Biggest fuck up….and I mean this genuinely, was trusting people to run my agency whilst I was putting Shopit first.

Back in 2018, I was pivoting and doing 15-hour days until midnight in the office, but it was too much. I hired new key staff and trained others to help smooth the process. When I realised that staff had lied, been lazy, and we were losing accounts left, right, and centre, it sent me into a spiral of anger, then a phase of desperately trying to fix things, then incredible fear….it made me ill for a while, and I never forgave those responsible. Though ultimately, that was my responsibility, so I’ve had to square that off with myself and move on.

Rant

The digital industry is full of bullshitters who think they know what they’re talking about. I lost one client to a bullshitting competitor who simply undercut me by 30%…and the client went out of business within a year.

Salespeople in agencies, in payments, software – never even try to understand what they are selling, the complexities or challenges. They are just yes-men to clients.

Clients also have no idea – they want Amazon for 20k. A handful take the time to investigate a realistic and measured specification for their budget, but 90% don’t and should frankly outsource the spec writing.

Useful Advice

My advice is simple – learn before you speak.

I’m not the most educated in ecommerce, but I sat with developers for 15 years before I founded Shopit, and even now, I doff my cap to much of their advice.

Clients, too, should learn about websites and marketing for six months before putting a spec or contract out, or there’s a good chance you’ll be changing providers within the year. There are so many Adwords or SEO charlatans out there it pays to understand what the technical experts are blabbing on about.

Agency owners should also learn about clients and their motivations for a few weeks before signing them up, or you’re going to do a bad job just to pay wages for another quarter. And soon enough, you’ll be out of business or selling Google Business Listings for £200.

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