Slowly…cautiously…step by step…I trudged along the side of road pushing a computer. The blizzard of 1996 dumped two feet of snow, yet I was opening my office for its first day – even if the nearest parking spot was a mile away.
This week Strategic Communications Group (Strategic) celebrates its 20th anniversary. Next to my family, it is the accomplishment I am most proud of.
In December, I mentioned Strategic’s 20th when speaking to a group of marketing students at the University of Maryland. After the initial (yet unspoken) “wow…you’re old” reaction, I was asked by one of the kids my thoughts on the three most important lessons from two decades.
I suspect my answer was a surprise.
1. You learn more on the way down than you do on the way up. Of course, the number one thing you learn is not to repeat the way down. Strategic rode the late 1990s/early 2000s dot com bubble and bust, resulting in multiple rounds of staff layoffs and cuts.
While my hairline never recovered from the stress, we emerged as a more disciplined, process-oriented and profitable business which has allowed us to weather market turns and shifts.
2. Get ahead of client needs, even if they are slow to evolve. Strategic has reinvented itself during the past six years, shifting from a public relations firm into a Web2Sales consultancy. This infographic explains more about Web2Sales.
This focus on innovation and working with marketers who simply want to “do better,” has kept us energized, creative and fresh.
3. Fulfillment from meaningful relationships is worth far more than a few bucks. I’ve been fortunate to work for and with an exceptional group of professionals. Yes…there are mornings when I would welcome another hour of sleep. Yet, I am thankful for every day I have at Strategic. That’s because of the people.