Some personal reflections on the impact of Donald J. Trump on relationships and the truth.

Like many people I know, the Donald Trump Presidency brought to the surface a few core tensions in some of my familial and otherwise friendly relationships. It made simple objectivity, never mind neutrality, impossible and offensive–whichever side of the divide you found yourself situated in. It forced most of us to choose and to some degree, declare and own those choices.

I’d like to believe that in the end, it will be for the best. Only time will reveal whether or not that proves to be the case.

For me, the fatal flaw of the Trump presidency was his complete…


Sometimes, small changes you’re forced to make reveal bigger ones you may need to make.

The last nine months have given all of us the chance to do a bit of reflecting and evaluation. Many companies, including ours, have had to navigate near-death experiences. Thankfully, we did bounce back in the fourth quarter. But plenty of others have had to close altogether. The struggle has been real — and ongoing. In our case, I believe the struggle is making us a better company. How? By seeing the requirement of change as an opportunity to improve.

I know. It sounds so cliche.

Consider your last nine months or so. What has changed in the way you…


Before you even start reading, we need to be straightforward with you: adapting your brand to the moment cannot be solved in three easy steps. This article will not give you a quick-fix to the moment we are all in because we don’t believe there is a lasting quick-fix if you’re not in touch with your brand’s reason for being. What we will do is continue to be honest with you about what makes brands resilient and how investing in understanding your core purpose will provide a roadmap for any storm that may come your way.

“Your brand is having a moment.”

We’ve been telling our…


People don’t buy what you do. They buy why you do it. You’re not just selling stuff, however great that stuff might be. You’re establishing a community of shared beliefs. When buyers or clients say “yes” to your offering, they’re actually agreeing to something fundamental that you believe — a conclusion that you’ve made, something that led you to innovate, launch, join and sell the product or solution you’re repping.

So how hard is it for you to discover and articulate your WHY?

Hard.

When you’ve spent years in the weeds of your brand’s day-to-day it can be difficult to…


The future depends on you understanding it.

Do you know that your brand is in a moment? It’s an important one. And it really matters what you do next. But how can you know what to do next if you don’t understand the moment you’re in — or possibly — don’t recognize that you’re in a moment at all?

Is your business on the move? On the attack? Or are you under attack? Perhaps, you’re in that mid-life assessment (crisis?) that every B2B brand inevitably experiences. That’s right. You launched with a solution: good R&D, engineering, something that solved a problem for your buyers. “Brand” at launch…


In his Creative Managers series, Steve Smallman, agency CEO and co-founder shares what it means to start hiring people that are “better” than you and why it’s crucial for the success of your team.

Who’s More Talented Than You?

“Hire people who are more talented than you.” It’s the right advice, so how do you qualify “more talented?” There are different kinds of talent, and talent will evolve over the course of a career. And besides, you’re great at your job-that’s why you’re in a position to hire. What does it really mean to hire someone “better” than you?

I like to keep it simple…


To kick off his Creative Managers series, Steve Smallman, CEO and co-founder, shares why moving from creative professional to creative manager is the only way to scale yourself and your creative vision (and why you will find a lot of joy along the way).

Every creative professional has experienced and (hopefully) grown to love the great highs (and lows) of the process. Diving deeply into the brief, understanding the objectives of the campaign or project, and then coming out with initial ideas: bad ads and inventive treatments-everything from mild to wild.

It’s a blast.

Depending on how much traction you get with your…

Steve Smallman Jr

Creative Agency CEO, curious student of people, relationships, spirituality, and ideas. Husband, father, grandfather. Podcast host: “The Design of Experience”

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