Diane Mulligan, President, Mulligan&Co.
“The Eyes Have It”
When was the last time you had “outside eyes” on your business?
Mulligan&Co. (M&C) was recently chosen for business analysis by students at Metro State University as part of their senior project. You may think these young eyes don’t have the expertise to add to our understanding of the PR business, but “young eyes” that haven’t been clouded by experience with the limiting visions of economic downturns, employee woes or unpredictable clients can re-open our eyes to possibilities.
One of the most interesting things these students shared with me is that our industry is expected to grow at 2.3 percent in the next year. That figure is close to the expected growth in GDP, meaning ours is a mature industry. With the economy growing, research shows more companies are bringing PR in-house. So as agencies, how do we increase our relevance, flexibility and value?
One answer I have found is in partnering with other small PR practitioners on larger accounts to bring a high level of expertise, knowledge and economy to clients.
It requires being explicit with the client about what each partner brought to the challenge. Up front communication and a clearly written contract can minimize misunderstandings. This positive collaboration can lead to future partnerships with other experts, with the combined expertise able to provide value on not just local, but also national accounts.
This leads me to another important point for smaller businesses; understand what drives you. By 2014 I realized I was spreading myself too thin. With the help of my new student friends and their “young clear eyes,” I realized what I love is representing inspiring people, companies and non-profits.
My eyes are now focused on where I can make a difference with my company. When I open my eyes each morning, I know exactly where M&C is going. I hope you have the opportunity to allow some “outside eyes” to open your eyes to greater more focused possibilities.