For those of you with some familiarity with our business, SHiFT is going through some very positive changes in the aftermath of Guy’s departure. Having finally seen the movie Moneyball, I liken our agency’s situation to what Billy Beane faced in Oakland when he built the A’s into a playoff contender despite one of the smallest payrolls in MLB.
Operating with a suddenly restructured overhead, SHiFT is using room in our salary cap to acquire some great young talent. As a result, our advertising agency is turning gaps in our defense into a more robust attack that’s producing wins for our clients.
These are the days of what Fast Company envisioned as “Free Agent Nation” back in 1997. The 2008 economic freefall forced advertising agencies to change or cease to exist. Seasoned designers, writers, media planners and account execs were “optioned” and pushed to the streets to compete with just-out-of-college communications majors, equally hungry for work. The best survived and are digging the entrepreneurial freedom.
Over the past few months, SHiFT has stuck our toes into the talent pool with great results. Frank Allgood joined us as a contract employee in January; today he’s our full-time Director of Client Communications. Elizbeth Barr, an accomplished writer who’s made the transition from traditional to digital content, has just joined our team on a contact basis to energize our social media opportunities. We will reward her good works with more and more hours going forward. We also have our sights set on a mega-talented young graphic designer, engaging him a few projects at a time until our business expansion allows us to give him permanent workspace as our newest SHiFTER.
Until then, our just-in-time workforce is absolutely kicking ass. Motivated to do great work and to make a lasting contribution to our clients’ success, each one of us understands the great opportunities in front of us. We’re a long way from perfect; but we don’t let mistakes beat us twice. We learn and do it the right way next time out.
Like the A’s of 2002, this is not a team of superstars. We’re a team of winners that’s surprising even ourselves some days.