There is a great saying: it takes a village to raise a child. After reading the book “That Sh*t Will Never Sell”, I would paraphrase it: it takes a village to build a brand and a chief to birth it. The book’s author David Gluckman managed to build dozens of brands in over 50 years! What was the key to his success and how did he find the way to always be on the same wavelength with the person across the table?
When David started his career in advertising, the relationship between clients and advertising people was quite adversarial. People kept you at arm’s length, you were only as good as your last ad and you always lived with the danger of losing the business. The concept of “togetherness” did not exist, people didn’t cooperate and if you made a mistake, you knew that you’d be given a really hard time.
David believes that ideas are not a product of one person, and therefore the most crucial part for him to succeed is understanding each other. It’s important to understand a problem collectively because it will be extremely inefficient if only one person will try to come up with a solution to the problem.
One of the most important things is to be on the same wavelength with other people. Instead of being just an agency and client, you should become colleagues. You should get on the level of understanding each other completely, know exactly what needs to get done, and how to put things together so that at the end you get a perfect result. Another essential aspect for success is to not be afraid of being open and bold. If something doesn’t work out or something needs to be said, there’s no reason for trying to hide it under several layers of politeness. Say it as it is, and things will work faster.
Such harmony doesn’t require all of the people to be exactly the same and have the same set of skills. In fact, it’s the opposite – each and every person in the company is valued and appreciated because they are unique and can contribute in their own way. Thanks to the combination of all those skills the company starts working like a clock. David suggests: practice admiring each other instead of being annoyed of the differences, and you will create a powerful team able to achieve a lot together.
Even the best team needs a strong and supportive leader to make the idea work. There are two types of chiefs: some that are just paying you money for results to get done, and if something doesn’t work out they fire you; or another type – which are cheering for you and your project as much as you do, and despite risks, challenges and difficulties stick to decision and commit to implementing it together with you. People hardly ever get motivated by money, but when they see such a huge support and belief in what they are doing from a person who leads them, the chance of success goes up tremendously.
So be confident in your ideas, work with your team and seek together the ways out and feel proud when you finally found a solution!
If you are interested in learning more about David’s own journey and hear more tips on developing your brand, listen to the whole episode of the Genius Leadership podcast with David here.
Stay tuned and be genius!