I have always loved this time of year. As we enter the holiday season one year finds itself wrapping up and the opportunities of the new year are just ahead. What a year 2017 has been for our dedicated team, our great clients and for TACK10 as we continue to grow. As the team finalizes plans for 2018 that are already being put into motion, it highlights just how fortunate we have all been in 2017.
The greatest lesson I have ever learned in both business and in my personal life is that one cannot achieve their ultimate potential alone. It takes a team. At TACK10 we are genuinely blessed to have such great people playing key roles in our combined successes. From our first ever hire, Megan Kimmerer, who continues, as our Marketing and Communications Coordinator, to play a vital role in our communications and supporting client deliverables through to Laura Richard who oversees the client side of the business as Executive Vice President. Every day, starting at about 7:30, the office starts to fill up with dedicated team members who are committed to making a difference through the business we are all fortunate to be a part of. As we look forward, that also sees three new faces that we will introduce you to in the new year, starting on January 2nd as we all make our way back and kick off 2018.
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“The business landscape gets more and more competitive as technology and globalization increase the quality of service offerings. Being better than your competitors is simply not good enough. Being better is simply the cost of admission. To be successful in any market one needs to be different. Being different is you value proposition.”
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I was quoted saying the above in a recent interview and I am reminded daily how true this is. There are some great consultancies out there and for TACK10 to be successful, we are not chasing them down or copying what they have done to become successful. We have to be better where there is cross-over but we have to be different to have longevity and one day, a legacy built on the impact we have had.
We did not invent being both purposeful and profitable. What we do own is our ability to have a major impact on what that landscape looks like in Canada and how we make a mark and challenge others to do so as well. A significant aspect of being different is in fact the team we have and continue to assemble. As an example, when we launched our Cause & Public Sector Group, we were not looking for someone who was established in the Cause space. I wanted to find someone who brought a different perspective to Cause. In Tracy Culleton we found a remarkably successful woman whose career had been built in retail businesses, a loving wife, a dedicated mother and someone for whom Cause was a passion and purpose.
As we continue to build the team, our focus is bringing team members together that have varied backgrounds, experiences and professional skill sets. No one will ever accuse us of having a team of agency lifers who lack exposure to working brand and/or property side. Our preference is for team members who have experience on both sides of the market and coming to a consultancy is their opportunity to bring it all together.
The Biggest Challenge
While it may sound like an interesting point, the biggest challenge of 2017 has been practicing restraint. My entire career has been spent scaling businesses. This year however, TACK10 needed me to practice restraint for the first time in decades. The focus over the first 10 months of my tenure has been building our value proposition. Behind the scenes, part of this has been creating the architecture for the larger group of companies and assembling the teams to start bringing some of those groups forward to market. The part you all get to see is building out our service capability, honing our TACKOLOGY, our proven methodology for success, and of course getting our Certified B Corporation status and creating our formal Manifesto, the 5% pledge and establishment of a Big Hairy Audacious goal that honestly keeps me up at night figuring out how we are going to deliver that kind of impact in such a short time frame.
While some cards will stay close to our chest for the time being, 2018 will be a very active year for TACK10. Adding to our Property and Cause Groups, we will formally announce and introduce our new Brand and Emerging Client Groups. Having all four Groups independently operating but under the same umbrella allow us to take the combined experience and learnings from each to amplify performance among all four groups.
What that might look like?
The Emerging Group works with startups and younger companies to who tend to be able to do a lot with very little and rely on partnerships and being nimble to succeed. What brand doesn’t want to combine that with their years of experience, stability and mature processes!?
The Closing Bell
My time at TACK10 has been humbling to say the least. We all know the adage that you never want to be the smartest person at the table… Well at TACK10, I am not. We have a remarkable team challenging every facet of the business daily. Their remarkable commitment to our clients and each other means that we are moving the measuring sticks forward daily with the level of service and strategy we are able to provide. While we are already blessed to be working with some great Tier 1 Brands, Causes and Properties, I look forward to seeing those relationships continue to grow as we formalize the Brand Group and add capacity to manage opportunities for Emerging clients as well.
We will not achieve our Manifesto and have the impact we want to have as individuals. To our team and our clients… Thank you for the opportunity to helm such a great organization under your leadership and thank you for entrusting your performance to us as we work on projects together.
To the new faces and organizations we will meet in 2018, our ability to exceed your expectations is built on the trust and commitment our teams and clients have built together.
Group President and CEO
Described as a growth agent, James is a modern day game changer known for delivering 10x performance across business, marketing and sales KPIs. As a sought after strategist, James believes and has demonstrated time and again that it is not about growing successful businesses anymore; true success is attained when you challenge and impact an industry as a whole.