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20 Things I’ve learnt in 20 Years of Digital

Reflections on 20 Years in Digital Marketing

Digital, News

7th September 2022

paul West, Founder & CEO

I founded Ignite in December 2001 and in the 20 years since, we’ve grown and developed into the agency we are today. Being CEO of Ignite for two decades has taught me a great deal, here are just a few of the most important lessons I’ve learnt along the way.

By writing these down, I hope perhaps they’ll help others who might be embarking on or running their own business ventures or projects. They are in no particular order:

  1. Find business partners you love and trust and can rely on as it’s just too lonely and not as much fun to run a business by yourself long term
  2. Compounding works like magic especially for reputations, relationships and networks
  3. Always be kind to people, it is certain that you’ll meet many people again on a long-term journey
  4. Hire the best people you can possibly find and then take good care of them
  5. Be as helpful as you can be with everybody, karma goes a long way
  6. Do the best possible job for every client, a compounded reputation for excellence is priceless
  7. Culture is way more than after-work drinks, it’s in everything you do and how you behave it every situation
  8. The difference between success and failure is often just not to give up
  9. Think globally, the world is a small place but that market is huge
  10. Give people the opportunity to grow and to take responsibility, they will almost always positively surprise you
  11. Hire for cultural fit above all else
  12. People work with people they like, so don’t be a dick
  13. Creativity can solve most problems
  14. You don’t have to reinvent the wheel every time, often the simplest solution is the best solution
  15. Do cool stuff that works and is effective
  16. Be honest and clear with people, almost everyone appreciates honesty and transparency, even if the news isn’t good
  17. Don’t undervalue yourself, if you’re creatively solving complex business problems then you’re contributing value
  18. Financial reward and profit are a consequence of success they are not the objective
  19. A sense of purpose doesn’t need to be about saving the world there are lots of other things that help you get out of bed in the morning and give you a direction in life
  20. Look up at the sky not down at your feet, you’ll see stars not mud

And one more for good luck:

Technology is remarkable, embrace it and make a conscious effort to remain attuned with technological progress (this gets harder as you get older!

I believe these are timeless and you can’t go far wrong by keeping them in mind. I’ll check back in another 20 years and see what else I can add!

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