The Arland Group is a boutique creative agency. We want to ask you an important question. Would you rather work with people who want to work with you? Or, would you rather work with people, who work for people, who make them work with you?

How Well Do You Know Your Co-Workers?

by Deb Andrychuk

25 October, 2013

Since I’ve moved to the “Lou” I’ve gained insight into our team and what makes The Arland Group different. My team is an amazing and eclectic group! Every day that I interact with them, I am reminded that our uniqueness is what makes our work stand out. Here’s what I have learned about each of our St. Louis peeps:

Jason Wood, Founder & President of The Arland Group & Arland Sports: Jason is really smart and a tad bossy. You can be bossy when you are in charge. All kidding aside, he is a great leader with a head for problem solving and entrepreneurial endeavors. He always is thinking of new ways to improve our services and grow our business. In addition, he is one of the most thoughtful and giving people I know and works harder than anyone I have ever met. Jason makes machines look bad because he can work such long hours without tiring. Jason loves baseball, Billy Joel and Abe Lincoln—in that order.

Keith Seiz, Founder & VP of Operations: This guy is our orchestra leader. Without Keith, our world would just shut down; he literally is the axis we spin on. Keith also is our hero when it comes to working out. He is the most dedicated runner and cyclist I have ever met. Just last week, he ran 20 miles while in Vegas for work. I chuckle at the mere thought of running 20 miles. I would need two weeks and a family of bears chasing me to run that far. No, let’s be honest—I would just give up and let the bears eat me. He’s amazing and he’s in great shape. I hate him.

Kathy Black, Account Manager/ Admin: Kathy is the mom that we all wish we had growing up.  She’s kind and sweet and has that soothing voice that could put a super cranky teething baby to sleep in five minutes. She does so much that I need another blog post to outline her job. In a nutshell, she juggles a lot of responsibility. And, her free counseling sessions have saved all of us thousands of dollars. She truly has missed her calling in life. #Therapist

Alyssa Stahr, Content Marketing Manager & Writer Extraordinaire: Alyssa writes content for TAG and manages our clients’ social media accounts. Alyssa is a social butterfly and her dance card is always full of fun events like singing karaoke, running, going to concerts and attending local festivals here in St. Louis. I’m downright exhausted after reading her Facebook feed. Alyssa made the cut immediately when I found out that she has an unhealthy passion for Peyton Manning and loves the Indianapolis Colts. With Peyton playing for Denver, we have bonded over our new found love for the Broncos! She also has a dog, Maddux, who is the main man in her life and could be a relative of my dog, Rocco.

Emily Pirraglia, Account Manager & Social Media Expert: Emily is a physical oxymoron. She is the skinniest person I know, yet she can eat more than any person I have ever met. She makes me feel good because no matter what I cook, she will eat it and tell me it is delicious. Emily should have her own show on TV teaching Americans how to be better consumers because I have never seen anyone who can make a dollar stretch like Emily. She doesn’t separate her two-ply toilet paper (yet), but if the end of the world is at hand, I want to end up in a shelter with Emily because she is so resourceful.

So that’s the story of our team in the city of toasted ravs, gooey butter cake and Cardinals’ baseball. I can’t wait to hear their thoughts on me, but again, that’s another blog post for another day. I couldn’t make it a week without them and appreciate all that they do for me professionally and personally. They are my work family and I love them!

Ciao!

Wisdom Comes With Age, Hopefully

by Kathy Black

25 May, 2012

In the St. Louis office, part of the decor and charm is the Inspiration Wall. The concept is rather simple, find something that inspires you and hang it on the wall. Our wall consists of magazine articles, photos and some of the branding and advertising projects that The Arland Group has been responsible for. Most of what hangs on our Inspiration Wall is compliments of Keith. Megan and I need to step up our game.

My inspiration, that has yet to make it to the wall, is actually a quote from my grandfather. He said to me last July 25th, “You hear a billion words a day and they all run together and most of them don’t mean anything.” I sat there and took it all in. He was just talking out loud really, as if I wasn’t even in the room. He and I sat there together with no one else in the house, as he ate the McDonald’s that I had just brought for him and it dawned on me that there sat a man that has lived a lifetime spanning from the Great Depression to Facebook, Twitter and texting. And he was right, so many words, so little meaning just like that, the wisdom of a grandfather was being shared with me and he didn’t even realize it, but I did.

Understanding the truth in that statement comes only with time and age. Learning that the person that is always doing the talking isn’t the person that knows the most is a life lesson, that if learned early, can save us from a lot of frustration. Those people will at times grab attention, because they usually demand it, and try to keep the focus on themselves by making noise. Being quiet, composed and poised are traits that are harder to come by. Most people want to associate with those that actually mean what they say and say what they mean.

Without even realizing it, we adopt this principal every day at The Arland Group. It’s one of the reasons that I genuinely enjoy being part of this team. Wasting words and telling people what they want to hear isn’t who we are. We’re a company that produces quality work and being proud of how we conduct business will always be at the center of what we do. It’s nice to know that my addition to the Inspiration Wall will serve as a great reminder of this.

Take me out to the ballgame…

by Keith Seiz

9 May, 2012

Did you even know there was an Arland Sports? Most people who read this blog, visit our website or work with The Arland Group, just see one aspect of our business. They see the creative agency; the group of really smart and bright minds that work on branding and marketing campaigns and produce exceptional websites and creative material.

But it’s not the only thing we do. Jason Wood, The Arland Group’s president and co-founder, also runs Arland Sports, and represents an impressive roster of professional baseball players. Check out the website at www.arlandsports.com.

I don’t do a lot with Arland Sports, as The Arland Group keeps me plenty busy. However, I had a great opportunity last week to go see one of our players, David Phelps, make his first major league start for the New York Yankees. The Yanks were playing in Kansas City, a short three-hour and change jaunt from our St. Louis offices.

It was a short trip that consisted of seven hours of driving and only about two hours of watching baseball, but it was well worth it. There are not a lot of similarities between what we do at The Arland Group and Arland Sports, but both companies approach business in the same way. We do great work for our clients in an honest and open environment. It’s the only way to run a business, regardless of what industry you’re in.

When the DIY model does not work

by Keith Seiz

13 October, 2011

I’ve always been proud to say I’ve started something. In my first career as the editor of a trade publication, I was most proud of the fact that I started a successful conference. In the last six years of many successes at The Arland Group, I am most proud of the fact that we took the chance in the first place. We started something. And we did it in a Do It Yourself (DIY) fashion.

The DIY model has paid huge dividends for our creative firm throughout its existence. In the beginning, doing it ourselves allowed us to streamline costs and develop our own models and processes for running an agency that were based on logic, not what other agencies were doing or alleged “best practices.”

Today, the DIY model brings us closer to clients. Despite our growth, we still insist on eliminating the gap between our creative team and our customers. How? By foregoing the traditional account executive model and insisting that all TAG Teamers are creative and versed in account management and sales. Taking this approach, we have built a great team of all-arounders in a DIY model.

But the DIY model is not always the best approach. We recently opened an office in St. Louis on Washington Ave. (recently named one of the top 10 streets in America!), and instead of moving into a space that was move-in ready, we leased a space that we could make our own. But instead of hiring professionals to transform the space into what we wanted, we decided to follow the DIY model.

Terrible decision. Balancing the daily workload of running a successful, growing agency is difficult enough, but combined with painting walls, installing new floors and buying furniture, it’s a burden I wish upon no one.

In the end, our office will be outstanding and it will be something I’m very proud of. But right now, as we slowly make our sparse accommodations a home away from home, I wish this once, I would have taken a different approach than the DIY model.

We’ll continue to post pics as the office becomes more complete and stay tuned for more info on our Open House!