At No Limit, we use Q4 to plan, evaluate and move forward.
For the first seven years of No Limit Agency, Q1 was Q1. It was the rebirth of the company — the first three months that set the tone for the remainder of the year. We did just fine, but I always felt like we were getting a late jump-start in our momentum, and in gaining insight to how we were performing as a company.
I feel as if we need a constant reminder of second chances. We love the perception of change (yet, for some reason, hate change). We love setting resolutions on New Year’s Day. We break the year up into three-month sets (even though that makes time go by faster). Perhaps deadlines help us get through our days, our careers and our lives.
In 2014, we decided to change things up. Our pitchers and catchers reported much earlier (October). We, in essence, used the final three months of the year to evaluate (staff evaluations in November); plan (leadership planning in October); inspire (account manager planning in November); and lead (staff summit in December). By creating a consistent round of planning and evaluating, we were able to identify our critical holes and prepare for 2015 in a much bigger way than in previous years.
Therefore, we, as an agency, are now back in Q1. This is our spring training. This is how we will set the tone for 2016.
Traditionally, this has been the quarter during which we do the most hiring. This is the quarter during which we take risks. This is the quarter during which we test out the systems and processes we have been working diligently at to ensure a better culture and better execution. This is the quarter during which we take all of our feedback from grades, compile them and try a new execution strategy.
Your Q4 is our Q1, because I feel as if we can’t afford to wait until April to decide if things are working right.
For 2015, we were able to launch 1851 and continue our evolution from a PR firm to a true full-service agency. I also feel we have a better handle on what we need to do in 2016 to take one more step toward becoming the best mid-size agency that ever existed.
Sure, this quarter reversal could simply be a perception in my complex mind; however, it seems to have worked well for the first year of trial.