Ad agency CEO Disease is the name given to the sense of estrangement that comes over many CEOs as they struggle with managing a business while failing at maintaining the critical relationships that are needed to drive the business.

ad agency ceo

In the agency world, things rarely get better on their own. Times a wasting.

This estrangement can be between the ad agency CEO and the fast-changing industry where everything seems new every week. A CEO’s slowness or inability to adjust is fatal. But that’s just one place where CEO Disease strikes.

Often CEO Disease occurs between the CEO and agency senior management. Between the CEO and clients. Between the CEO and staff. Where ever it occurs, CEO Disease hurts.

One place where CEO Disease is running hard these days in the agency world is CEO difficulty in working with the new generation of younger, ad agency talent. Here these young go-getters want it all now and don’t understand why they might have to wait. Trying to deal with this problem causes estrangement and resentment on both sides. CEOs fume. And popular and talented managers who are needed to drive the business give up and walk.

Solutions to CEO Disease with publicly traded companies involve firing the CEO and quickly finding a replacement. Fortune 500 companies go through this all the time, and the solution is simple and usually effective. The business continues and the organization makes adjustments to accommodate the new CEO.

But in the agency business, the consequences of CEO Disease are more far reaching. The relationships are actually more important in an agency or marketing communication firm than on the client side.

Here’s what’s true. On the client side, with CEO Disease, the CEO suffers. On the agency side with CEO Disease the agency suffers. And many times it’s fatal to the agency.

Helping agency CEOs understand and adjust to CEO Disease is a big area where we act as counselors, advisors, mentors, and coaches.

Give Bob Sanders a call at 412.897.9329 for a frank discussion on the symptoms you see and perhaps the problems your firm is experiencing.

Wasting time photo by mizu–chan