Six Years Strong

smith & beta is now 6 years into our research of the capabilities and ways of working at agencies.

Our research started almost accidentally. We knew that we needed to understand how employees felt about their actual skills. Particularly in areas of digital – data, social, mobile and such. We also knew that leaders often have an inaccurate view of the capabilities of their company. But at first, we didn't know why.

So we decided to start asking employees to tell the truth (anonymously) about their skillsets and mindsets. They started sharing all we needed to know (and sometimes more than we needed to know). In addition to skills, we've collected opinions about agency culture, leadership, process (always the processes) and how to change the way their agency should work to produce the best ideas and win clients. Most leaders want to know the truth about capabilities, some do not. 

The data in our 2018 State of Industry Talent and Digital Transformation means something. The results point to a deficiency but also an opportunity. It's time to shift our thinking about "training" and start investing in those who are running the business. 

Share the results with your boss, co-worker, CEO and have a discussion about the actual capabilities of employees. And then call us so we can help you navigate, assess and map the skills of your organization.

Did you read these already?
Introducing Future Focus for Training Insights in 2022

Knowing exactly what to invest to ensure training and development results is critical. Let's explore how with our new program Future Focus.

2021 The Big Shift

2021 will represent a major permanent shift in how we work, collaborate and connect with employees and customers.


smith & beta had a baby named Giide

Talent Development, Experts and Mindsets. Let's Go.

Our business at smith & beta has always been focused on the development of people walking in the doors each day. We believe that if a company focuses on the current talent, what they know today and should know in the future, it can make all the difference to the bottom line. But some leaders aren’t familiar with talent development. It’s new. It feels unmeasurable. It seems foreign compared to hiring a few new experts. It’s a mindset and strategic shift. Yet we know talent development works. We also know that experts don’t scale. Often those superheros we hire land at the new job only to find that no one at the company understands them. They get siloed into a back room. They are change agents without support. They eventually leave. It happens time and time again. Take a minute to consider your budget for hiring experts this year or even a single leader and then compare to your training dollars. Is there a big difference? Do you operate as “training is nice to have” but not required? If so, you’re missing out on a big opportunity to scale and distribute capabilities beyond a few people at your company. Digital is not a department. Digital is shared knowledge, common language and collective understanding. When we design talent development programs, we work with industry leaders directly to lead content design. They are the experts. They know what should specifics should be covered. They walk in the room and own the conversation with employees. Below we’ve included a great workshop to get started this year.