The Value Method - Part 2: Imagine The Possibility

The Value Method - Part 2: Imagine The Possibility

How The Value Method helps turn creative excellence into client acclaim.

We recently discussed how the creative industry, including studios, agencies, and their clients, suffers from a lack of value alignment.

Today, let's explore how shifting to a value-aware and value-centered mindset can unlock the great potential that creative firm owners dream of — from better team dynamics, efficient production, stronger client relationships, to more profit and impactful work.

Let's start big. Imagine a World…

Imagine a world where your clients fully trust you, making communications and production smooth. You rarely get stuck in revision loops. Nearly everything your team does is fully recognized and appreciated by your clients. Ultimately, you're paid for your expertise, and the work you produce makes the impact you always desired.

Does this sound like a dream?

Many of us have had projects that nearly hit all these marks. But is this the rule or the exception?

Based on my polls, 80% of creative agency and studio founders agree that the frustration of unrecognized effort, friction, and lost impact is real and not infrequent. It sucks.

How do you feel about the true value of your work being unrecognized?
80%: I know the feeling too well—it sucks!

We often swallow this frustration, accepting it as part of the creative business. Whether we grow thick-skinned or set ourselves on a path to burnout, we often fail to ask a simple question: Does it have to be like that?

Breaking Down Value Alignment

What stands in the way of turning exceptional projects into your standard?

Besides value alignment — not much!

Let's break it down methodically:

  1. Clarity of the Business Ecosystem: You have full clarity of the business ecosystem where you deliver your services. Whether it's client-direct or in a complex value chain like advertising production, you know exactly how value is layered and compounded across the chain. This includes understanding the value you bring and what's expected from the players you interact with — clients or partners.

  2. Reading between the lines: You have full understanding of what your client truly wants and needs. It's not what they sent you in a brief. It's everything that's between the lines. This ability to read between the lines separates you from nine out of ten competing firms.

  3. Policies and Systems: You have implemented policies, systems, and methods so that you never start a project without full clarity on the what, how, and why of the project. Mastered aligning with the client on what constitutes value, uncovering unspoken motivations, and setting clear criteria for evaluating the work and measuring impact.

  4. Mastered Value Communication: when you deliver, the client sees that you've met the success criteria you aligned on and recognizes the extra effort you took to not to provide just something, but what they value highly. These extra nuggets are what makes over-delivery a tool for client retention, not a method for systematically hurting your bottom line and team morale.

Moving Beyond "We Need More Leads"

Since I started in the creative business two decades ago, I've seen many studios stuck in the stage of "we need more leads" instead of moving towards "we need better leads" and ultimately, "we need better relationships to make more impact and profit." It took years of my career to evolve past these hurdles and see a better way of doing things.

Unlocking Greatness

Often, I hear: "We don't have the great clients that [big studio name] has. If we did, we could produce equally good work."

This perspective is true on the pixel-level, and therefore misses the point entirely.

Great clients are not found—they're nurtured.

Great relationships are not found—they're forged.

So often, I hear something along the lines of: "oh, but we don't have these great clients that [big studio name] have. If we had, we could easily put our chops to work, and produce the work that's equally good".

It's often true. The catch? It's true on the pixel-level, and missing the point entirely.

Great clients are not found. They're nurtured.

Great relationships are not found. They're forged.

Great clients are not found. They're nurtured.

The approach I laid out above is not designed as a way to get more leads, although often it can, simply because it's the best possible framework I know of, to craft a winning company positioning.

The goal is to move past being stuck in revision loops and crying for more leads, turning self-proclaimed creative excellence, that only your team cares for, into systematic, recognized, and profitable client acclaim. This way, you can save on marketing and produce the greatest work that makes both profit and impact.

That's what concepts like adapting value-centered mindset, value chain mapping, value communication and creation are meant to enable and streamline.

It's the main premise of The Value Method.

The Vision

Imagine a world where creative firm leaders no longer struggle with recognizing, communicating, and realizing value, leading to frustration, lost time, profit, and impact.

Instead, they gain full command of the value flow, allowing their firms to excel in competitive edge, resilience, profitability, and client impact. In this world, creative excellence isn’t a destination — it’s a departure.

The Mission

Making this world a reality and helping you take bold steps to get there is the core mission of my advisory practice. I aim to pick up and fix the broken pieces of the creative sector, alleviating the headaches experienced by my creative peers while making a good living.

Driven by a deep understanding of industry challenges and a commitment to improving the dynamics between creatives and their clients, I draw from my own career experiences.

Years ago, I also faced difficulties in navigating the creative ecosystem, often lacking clarity on how value compounds. I’ve felt the frustration of failed recognition — seeing our work and value go unappreciated. I’ve sold myself short — being undervalued and under-compensated despite delivering high-quality work because I was value-illiterate.

Over time, I recognized the potential and actual value that alignment and clear communication between creatives and clients can create. This led to our most successful projects, awards, and profits. And it wasn’t accidental.

Seven pivots down the line, I decided it was time to act. If you’re ready to start an advisory practice aimed not just at making a few dollars but at helping your peers and taking a shot at fixing the industry, you need to go big. That’s why I channeled my trenches-earned experience and everything I learned from the best minds in creative expertise into The Value Method.

The Rally Cry

Interested in reimagining how value flows through your creative firm and projects into the world?

Reach out for a conversation, and we'll explore how The Value Method can help your firm move ahead. Whether you’re thriving and thinking about future-proofing your business or struggling to adapt to the massive disruptions over the last year and a half, there’s a way forward.

Let's turn unrecognized creative excellence into impact, profit and client acclaim.

Stay prolific!
Keep Futurecrafting™!

Thinking bigger, seeing farther, making impact. Insights into building and evolving creative businesses and B2B brands. Coming at you from "the fast thinker", Patrick Kizny. #b2b #branding #marketing #creative