It’s finding the right fit that counts!

“The Shoes”

I’ll admit it, I’m a bit of a snob when it comes to shopping. For me, quality rather than quantity is the important thing, and I would prefer to spend €100 on one great item than €100 on 20 cheaper bits and pieces!

I recently bought an expensive-ish pair of shoes in Brown Thomas (got them in the sale you see!) and was happy out leaving the shop with my new purchase. So off I went to work in them on Monday morning, and by lunchtime my feet were killing me.

Now I’m persistent, and felt I could break them in, and continued to hobble around for the next few days….

The same week I came across an Irish Independent article by Peter Flanagan entitled “Mad Men shake off the downturn and discreetly pursue new clients” which addresses the changes in the PR industry in recent times, including the issue of charging clients. Reading this got me thinking about my poor feet and my new shoes….again!

Flanagan wrote “The most common rate is in the region of €210 for a senior account manager or account director. Those sorts of rates may seem exorbitant to the outsider, but for a big company it is a price worth paying if it maintains its reputation. Inevitably cost has become a bigger consideration than ever before, and that has forced prices and margins lower and lower — close to the point where the rates are unsustainable for the industry.” He adds “…Anecdotal evidence shows some agencies charging as little as €110 an hour for an account director.”

So is he saying that paying less means their service won’t be as good? That by paying the higher rate, you’re guaranteed better results? While I may have agreed with this at some point, my “shoe experience” has reinforced a recent change of opinion on my part.

It’s been almost three weeks now and they’re a little better (my persistence may be paying off), but they’re just not as good as I thought they would be. In the past I’ve bought items that have cost significantly less than “the shoes”, and are comfortable, work for me, and still serve me well. This got me thinking about how business isn’t all that different… surely it’s finding the right fit that counts!

It’s finding the right fit that counts!

Alison O’Brien is an Account Manager with Fuzion

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