Agencies are notorious for burning out employees, and in the past three years that reputation has gone from bad to worse. With the economy in decline, agencies—with their already-thin profit margins and bandwidth—are struggling to deliver better results with even less time and money.
We could tell agency employees to keep their heads down until things get better, but unhealthy and irresponsible trends have existed long enough. It’s time agency leaders lean into the challenge and elevate the conversation around mental health for the sake of their people, who have always been and will always be the heart of the business.
Here are four ways to reshape agency life to promote happier, healthier employees:
Switch the script from competition to collaboration
In advertising, competition is constant. We compete with other agencies for new business, and we compete with our own teammates to have our ideas chosen first. Of course, a little healthy competition is necessary for great work and business growth, but too much pressure has the opposite effect. After all, looking out for No. 1 gets lonely, stressful and exhausting. So, change the narrative from one of competition to collaboration by restructuring the way you solve problems.