Tim Grice, the former CEO of Branded3 and chief media officer at Edit, is now CEO at digital performance marketing agency, connective3.
The company, which launched in October, offers SEO, paid media, programmatic, content marketing, social media, data insights and CRO.
Here he gives us an insight into his working week.
I start most days off with a three to four mile run, but since lockdown this has become a consistent activity I rarely ever miss it, even on weekends. It’s one of the best ways for me to start the day with clear head, it allows me to start the day with more positive thoughts and helps me to feel awake for those early morning tasks. By 8.30 I will have run, showered, knocked back a couple of coffees and had breakfast.
First job is checking my emails and arranging meetings/tasks for the week, there is always more to do than I could ever possibly get through so I tend to set myself two or three important tasks for the day, and don’t move onto the smaller stuff until they are complete. I’ve found this much easier to stick to working from home as there are fewer distractions, although Teams can become busy during the middle of the day.
We have our sales and marketing meeting every Monday at 9.30, when we run through pipeline, make sure opportunities are being nurtured correctly and get an update on our marketing activity for the week. Weekly might seem like overkill but I like to keep the management team focussed and always collaborating on our sales and marketing efforts, we have huge ambitions and don’t want to let things slip. This is now done over Teams and it works almost as if we’re in the room together, it also seems to enable people to be more creative and share ideas, I think face to face can be difficult for certain types of people.
Monday’s tend to be light on client meetings so I spend the afternoon checking on client work, ensuring we’re delivering some serious growth for the businesses we work with. I’ll catch up with the strategists and discuss the work being delivered and opportunities to deliver more.
Start with the usual routine, sat down at my home work station for 8/8.30 having narrowed down the couple of key things I need to accomplish that day. I also like to spend 15/20 minutes reading the news, both industry specific and general, it helps me stay on top of trends, gives me something interesting to talk about in the morning team calls and makes me a pretty solid quiz contender.
There isn’t a week goes by when we’re not pitching and Tuesdays through to Thursdays seem to be the days when they’re happening. In the morning I’m usually checking over the strategy we’re proposing, investigating competitors and making final tweaks to the deck. Of course this now has to be done remotely, however we’re finding that it works well, we’ve had over 10 pitches on lockdown all either over Teams or Skype and all have been relatively successful.
If we were in the office we’d normally work through lunch, ensuring the presentation, strategy and creative were all perfect. However, working from home means we can keep a Teams meeting going while you prepare some food in the kitchen, make yourself a drink and generally be more relaxed throughout the process. I would rarely take a lunch break in the office, usually hitting the gym and surviving on a Huel fix, however being at home I’m taking regular breaks away from my laptop and doesn’t seem to affect my productivity at all, maybe there is a lesson in there.
Pitch in the afternoon, usually over Teams, followed by a debrief where we discuss what could have gone better and make plans to improve.
This would normally be our event day, whether it’s one we’re attending or organising. Since the lockdown this has become impossible and instead of switching to seminars and drop-ins, we decided to double down on thought leadership and brand marketing, a decision I think that has been key to us growing during the most challenging time in my working life.
We’re a fast growing business so we are constantly interviewing, this could be for any area of the business. I like to be involved in all interviews, maintaining our culture is one of the most important parts of my role and therefore hiring the right people is a priority. Again this takes place over Teams and Skype which in my opinion works just as well and we’ve made four job offers during lockdown.
Our proposition is built around connected performance, each area of the business working together seamlessly to ensure we are providing maximum value for our clients.
To make sure our specialists are working together we have our ‘connective’ meetings on a Thursday, we discuss client performance, industry news and updates that would be useful to feedback and further opportunities for growth. Organic, paid and creative all working together to make sure we have joined up strategies for our clients.
In the afternoon I review the finances, forecasts and pipeline ready for my meeting with our investors on Friday morning.
Up early as always and straight onto Teams for a meeting with our investors to update them on our performance and outlook. We discuss the strategy, the landscape and where we potentially need to pivot. This has been a particularly important meeting for me during these times, the support and guidance from our investors (also my mentors) is priceless, I’m very grateful for it.
In the afternoon I’m catching up with my team, discussing plans for the following week, challenges, key events and pitches. I try and clear my emails at the end of each week and make sure my calendar is fully up to date before finishing around 4.30pm for our weekly company quiz, which usually has some sort of dress code. It’s a great way to end the week and allows the team to bond, albeit remotely.
Lockdown has obviously changed routines and ways of working, however as an agency it has been a fairly seamless transition and I can honestly say the productivity and creativity of the team has improved. Although we cannot wait to get back into our office, I think it’s made it clear to me, our team and our clients that it’s not always where the best work is done.