10 Reasons Why Small Agencies Make Good Sense by Brett Osmond

I’ve always been a jack of all trades. I like the idea of being able to turn my hand to any task at hand. Of rolling up my sleeves and getting the job done. And If I can’t do it myself I find the best person who can. This can do approach was baked into me when I first started my career and honed through years as a book publishing marketer working across many projects with limited resources.

Being a doer is more than a broad set of skills (that have been mastered by working with all kinds of people and businesses, from government through to commercial through to the artistic), it’s that small business attitude that comes with knowing the true value of the dollar. We. Make. Budgets. Work. Harder. Sure, this approach is not unique to Leading Hand Design, but as a small creative and design agency we know how to make tight budgets sing and bring more value to the table.

There’s no doubt the past few months have been tough, but when the going gets tough, we adapt and keep on going. That’s why it makes good business sense – now more than ever – to consider working with a smaller agency. Here’s why.

1. We try harder. All day. Every day.

Complacency? Never heard of it. We love our clients and have full appreciation of the importance of their business.  That attitude never wains. It’s embedded within the Leading Hand Design culture. Our team is small and across everything, so we all know what our clients mean to us and what they mean to their customers. So naturally, we try harder.

2. Everything. We do it all.

Bigger isn’t necessarily better. Great things come in small packages. At the risk of labouring the point, there’s nothing a smaller agency cannot do. Like our bigger cousins, Leading Hand Design often works with specialist contractors to bring in the skills and services we need to complete a particular project. But with our passion, determination and formidable in-house skillset, I’m finding more and more that we don’t need to call those extra people in.

3. We’re lean and keen

Because there are fewer of us at Leading Hand Design, we don’t have the personnel to be sitting in on every meeting. Far from hampering the process, it’s better for everyone involved. Distilling meeting outcomes becomes more streamlined when only key team members take part, and this helps keep projects moving along as they should. Less is more – more efficient, more practical and more effective in driving successful solutions.

4. We’re nimble

Agility is our middle name. That’s because there’s a rapid and direct line for approvals. It means we spend less time getting the nuts and bolts out of the way, giving us more time to do the fun stuff, the creative stuff, the design stuff, the really amazing stuff. You want fast? We’re already on it.

5. We’re simply good value

Our overheads are smaller, our approach to work is leaner and faster, meaning we can deliver great solutions for much less. We have best practice systems in place, which are all totally transparent. And we’re happy to share – in fact, we love it – how and where we’re spending time (which as we all know, equals money!) We work on a project-by-project basis, allowing us to bring great value to each and every one.

6. We’re plain talkers

Jargon? No thanks. Gobbledegook? Nope. Maybe it’s just the way we are at Leading Hand Design, but you won’t find weasel words ever crossing our lips. No fluff or spin here either. We say it how it is, and this is reflected in our presentations, reports and processes. Oh yes and when we speak to you on the phone. We’ll be pitch perfect on that too.

7. We’ve got more skin in the game

Plain and simple: Leading Hand Design is our passion, our baby, our business. We’ve got more to lose if things go pear shaped. And we don’t want that. Not ever. So, it means that our DNA and our reason for being is embedded into every project we do, no matter how small, big or somewhere in between.

8. We’re in it for the long haul

Like many small agencies we’ve fostered long term relationships with many of our clients. Over time, we’ve become their brand custodians but somehow more than that. We help them in any way we can. Could we say we’re partners in their business? I don’t think that’s over stating it. These relationships take years to cultivate. Which is just the way we like it. As do our clients. 

9. We’ve got tonnes of experience

Jamie, Cate, Jason, Luke, Jake, Alex, Genna and I have decades of know-how. Across marketing, design, branding, arts, tech, publishing and consulting, we’ve worked in a huge variety of sectors and across hundreds of projects. We’ve worked with agencies large and small, on both sides of the table, and we know that we bring incredible value to every conversation we have with our clients.

10. Skills, skills and more skills

Jamie and I are working class boys who were lucky enough to get a great education and we’ve never stopped learning. Nurturing skills, investing in skills and ongoing education is fundamental to us and a lot of small agencies as they strive to deliver the very best to their clients. At the moment I’m currently focused on expanding our animation and illustration offer and range of digital services, while Jamie is teaching design part-time. In doing this, Jamie can connect with the up-and-comers, the blue sky thinkers and innovative ways of doing things (while imparting his wisdom to the students). For Leading Hand Design, it’s yet another way that helps us to stay fresh, creatively open minded and ready for new challenges. Small we may be, but boy do we think big!