It's OK to have opinions - and 4 other things I have learned in business

By Leeann Froese

5 Things I have learned on our 2nd Anniversary

I am not sure how that happened so fast, but our little agency is two years old this month.

Andrew and I want to thank our amazing team and our clients for allowing us to us create brands and get the word out on things that celebrate living well: wine, food, hospitality, financial planning, film, and sport.

Clockwise, from left: me, Laurisha Bardal, Andrew von Rosen, Felicia Fraser, Ali Harris, Sujinder Juneja, Kathleen Beveridge, Amy Chen and Carole Morton

I have been learning new lessons everyday, and wanted to share a few things that rank at the top of my mind as we celebrate the start of year three #withTownHall.

I'd love to know, if you own a business, what are you learning? Maybe we can learn from each other? Listed as a countdown, but not in strict order:

5. It's OK to have opinions - even if they are unpopular

For much of my career I only cared about being a people pleaser. I still possess this trait, and our team also shares this trait, but not at the expense of giving bad advice or being untruthful.

My mentor, Christine Coletta, instilled in me the saying 'we're not here for a haircut', meaning that people don't look to my expertise so I can blow smoke, or not make things happen. As such, people can count on our team for good content and to get things done.

I have also realized since opening Town Hall that after almost 20 years in the industry I have knowledge to share and I should provide not only expertise, but also the truth and my own opinions, especially if they defend clients, and even if these opinions or truths are unpopular or are not what people had hoped to hear.

So now, I give my complete opinion when asked, or call out situations when I need to. An example of this is my recent post about those who ask for wine donations. Sorry, everyone who wants free wine.

4. The right team is everything

Clockwise, from left: me,  Felicia Fraser,  Andrew von Rosen,  Carole Morton, Laurisha Bardal, Sujinder Juneja, Amy Chen & Kathleen Beveridge

There is no way that Andrew and I could deliver strong programming to our clients without the contributions of a strong design and communication team. I'm so proud of the work that our team does to create identities and raise profiles.

It has taken the full two years, with some personalities coming and going (and this may continue as the business evolves) but when the fit is right, as it currently is, the culture and work output can be magic.

Thank you Sujinder, Felicia, Amy, Laurisha, Ali, Lindsey, Kathleen, Lindsey, our newest member, Carole, and our consultants Alana and Irene, for being so key in the team's success. We would be nowhere without you all!

3. A home office can only hold so much

We are seeking a new space, and ideally, by our 3rd birthday we will be in a different office. We are working with a realtor but the Vancouver market is hot. Wish us luck!

2. We need to tell people what else we do

Many people don't realize we are a full service agency and think that we only offer publicity services, or that I am singularly a PR person.

So can you please help it be known: we offer packaging, media relations, social media outreach, logo and graphic design, advertising campaigns, events and marketing strategy.

Also, we are not the popular Joseph Richards Group owned Townhall Public House.

We named our company “Town Hall” based on collaboration, which we feel is so important, especially in this era of crowd-sourced information and real-time customer feedback.

It is our constant goal to be a lifestyle destination, and deliver projects that inspire and celebrate the good life.

1. We are just getting started

In the scheme of a growing business we are really just getting started. The learning curve for sure is super steep.

I was looking after a lot of the agency work at Coletta and Associates before we closed the doors there, but there's nothing quite like being the one who's the air traffic controller and holding the bag and making sure that everybody's rent gets paid.

We are super thankful to our clients who believe in what we're doing at our little agency. We truly love you!

Life is too short to work with people you don't like and products you don't fall in love with.

Andrew and I thank you

We thank everybody for coming along for our ride #withTownHall

We are very social with what we do - so converse with us on your favourite social network @townhallbrands.

Keep up with what we do and talk to us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.

We look forward to what the next year brings!