It’s truly an honor for our team to be part of the APNA community, we have had the unique pleasure and privilege to provide our software platform to more than 100 of you and your agencies, and we have learned so much from each and every one of you as our incredible friends, mentors and fellow entrepreneurs. We thought we would take this opportunity to share some of our observations and thoughts with you on what we’ve seen distinguishes good agencies from great ones; we sincerely hope you might find some insight of value to you.
The biggest single key factor that we have observed that makes an agency and agency owner great is focus. More specifically, focusing on what you are great at.
To make this more tangible, here are 5 particular things we have seen:
1. What are you spending your time on?
Great agency owners spend their time on what they are great at. You are probably great at managing relationships with clients and nannies, creating great matches, and coming up with ideas to improve and expand your business. How much of your time are you spending writing duplicate emails, texting nannies, sending out documents and invoices, cleaning up resumes and other mundane tasks? The incredible Megan Metzger gave us the perfect phrase for this, try conducting a “time audit”. Great agency owners have software and automated systems in place that free up their time to focus on what really matters.
2. Build a team
Great agency owners know they can’t do everything by themselves. We have heard so many times “I can’t hire someone because it would be impossible to explain how I do things to them!” The problem is that half your information is in your email, half is in word documents on your computer, and half is in your head (please excuse my math). Great agencies have a system that keeps all of their information organized and fed into a structured process, which makes it easy for them to hire excellent people to take tasks off their plate and help them grow.
3. Don’t underestimate your nannies and families
Many agencies have a tendency to behave as though their nannies and families are the children that need care! They couldn’t possibly make a resume, or input a booking request, and so you feel like you have to do everything for them. Your clients are often some of the wealthiest people in the country (usually not by accident), and people trust your nannies with their children, they are pretty competent! Great agencies put the tools and systems in place to enable their nannies and families to strategically control segments of their own journey, saving themselves an unbelievable amount of time and creating a better experience for everyone.
4. Are you trying to do too much?
Great agencies know what they are great at and stick to that. Many agencies, especially new agencies, often want to do everything: full time placement, temp placement, babysitting, backup care, nannies, housekeepers, etc. and end up getting overwhelmed and don’t do any of them particularly well. Some agencies manage to make it work, but it’s difficult. A good general rule of thumb might be to not have more services than team members. Also, chances are one of your services is making up most of your revenue, find that and double down!
5. Investments vs Costs
Great agency owners think in terms of investments, not costs. Hiring a new person is not a cost, it’s an investment, getting a new website made is not an expense, it’s an investment, upgrading your software is not an expense, it’s an investment. That doesn’t mean you spend your hard earned money without thinking, but the great agency owners have the ability to view costs as exciting investments in their business that will return their value many times over.
All of the above are lessons this industry and community have taught us, for which we are very grateful, and these are lessons we struggle daily to implement ourselves as we strive to serve you! Our goal is to help every agency we work with be great. If you’re curious to learn more about what our software platform does, please take a look at our 3 minute demo video, and if you’d like a personal walk through or just want to chat, please feel free to book a time with us, we’d love to meet you! Aakash and the Enginehire Team