Simon Palmer is the CEO of Webhound Media. Simon is a thought leader, influencer, visionary, and successful entrepreneur. Simon provides the leadership and energy that has inspired the creation of Webhound Media. Simon Palmer joins other leading CEOs and Founders taking part in our Leader Roundtable Interview Series. The DotCom Magazine editorial team has recently awarded Webhound Media with our Impact Company of 2019 award. We are delighted to have Simon join us for our Leader Roundtable Interview.
Simon, thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy day for this interview about your company, leadership, and entrepreneurship.
1. Simon, please tell us about Webhound Media.
At Webhound Media, our commitment is to stay at the forefront of industry technologies to ensure we are always giving our clients the best service and advice. No matter how big or small a project is, our goal to deliver the best possible results is always our number one priority. We know what delivers the best outcome, and we continually re-assess how we work to maintain the most efficient and effective approach we can.
2. How did you come up with the idea for Webhound Media?
Since graduating in graphic design back in 1994 I have worked for major national brands initially as a front-end web developer. My role gradually evolved into a mix of both website design and digital marketing. In my experience over the years, I felt that larger organisations sometimes lacked the personal one-to-one joined up service that clients seemed to want. So I decided to create a company which would encompass the whole digital package from branding, web design and marketing to development and maintenance, whilst at the same time providing our unique personal service to each and every client.
3. What is the key to your company’s success?
Taking the time to really get to know our clients needs and delivering on those needs is paramount to us and we believe a good relationship is vital to a successful project. The ethos of Webhound Media is to treat the clients’ business as if it was our business. We believe in real conversations and welcome feedback at every stage of the project in order to produce something the client has envisaged, which then delivers the optimum results. We take support and guidance very seriously and offer this to the client from inception to completion.
4. Many of our readers are just starting to build a company. What advice can you give entrepreneurs just starting out with a new venture?
Be prepared for failure, learn from each failure, never stop trying to improve. Set yourself realistic goals and never give up!
5. For other entrepreneurs seeking to build a business as successful as yours, what advice can you give them when times get a little challenging?
When times do get challenging (and they will!), don’t be afraid to include your team and your mentors. Getting a different perspective on things is hugely valuable, and they want things to work as much as you. Take a step back to reflect on where you’re at and try to look from a different perspective. Having family and friends who really believe in you even when you don’t believe in yourself helps, and listen to those who have your best interests at heart.
6. How do you make sure your customers will become raving fans of your company?
We treat every client as if they are our only client. We support businesses through their project journey and beyond to make sure they feel valued, understood and listened to. A personal approach is key, and many past clients are still in touch with us now!
7. In today’s fast changing business environment, how do you stay abreast of things?
I think the trick here is to stay focussed on our ethos, goals and what it is we are doing, rather than going into ‘analysis paralysis’ and fixating on what other agencies are doing or offering. We know what we can offer and are always looking to improve our ways of working so the client benefits from this. The digital world is massive now, and to try and keep up with all the new tips and tricks that aren’t relevant to us, would be a waste of time. We focus on being the best at what we do.
8. What is your “Why”? Why do you get up in the morning, and how do you keep yourself at peak performance to lead Webhound Media?
Apart from my puppy, who thinks 4am is the new 7am, I get up every morning because I believe in what we are doing, and for the joy of being creative, innovative and solution focussed. I love what I do, even after 20 years in this field and embrace the constant and ever changing face of the digital world. There are always new challenges, and something new to learn. This keeps me on my toes, and makes me passionate about being the best at what we do.
9. Can you recommend a book that has had an influence in your career? How did it influence you?
It’s not how good you are, it’s how good you want to be » by Paul Arden.
This book influenced me because it flips the old style of leadership on its head, and encourages teamwork and creative thinking. It has short meaningful messages, that I try to implement into my working practice, taking what’s useful and disregarding what’s not!
10. What makes a great leader?
I feel that in order to be a good leader, you need courage, conviction, clear direction and most importantly, a vision. Active listening, reflection and perspective taking are necessary abilities so that you do not become ‘fixed’ or ‘rigid’ in your thinking. Ability to welcome feedback is crucial, along with having the right people around me, and inspiring them to do something because they care, rather than because I told them to.
A true leader walks with their employees not in front or above them and understands that the success of any venture is because of the sum of its parts, and not one individual.
Simon Palmer, thank you so much for participating in the DotCom Magazine Leader Roundtable Interview Series. We very much appreciate the time you spent helping our readers learn more about what it takes to build a great company and become a great leader. We wish you, your family, and of course Webhound Media, nothing but the best. Thanks again!