There’s been a new buzzword circulating within recruiters and HR professionals lately – “progressive culture”.

On reading the article “Ten Signs of a Progressive Company Culture” on the Forbes website, I realised that this was the very essence of Createful and how we do things. We are so progressive in our culture, that we were doing this before it was even a thing!

But it got me thinking; surely this is just a standard across agencies, particularly within Digital, where a huge amount of your workforce is now made up of millennials with an entrepreneurial spirit and a work ethic that reflects the values of such a culture inherently?

So with most agencies having this type of culture nowadays, what is it that makes Createful such a fantastic and different place to work? Our Client Delivery Manager Nicole has previously posted on our culture and how we operate, but I wanted to look at how we define that culture…

The 5 Signs of a Createful Culture

  1. We are flexible and place trust in each other. Need to leave an hour early to catch a train on a Friday? Have to dip out to take an important call? Need to work from home one day because your child has chicken pox and can’t go to nursery? That’s life! We have shifted away from the old fashioned micro-management, with minute watching and timing breaks to “maximise efficiency” and having it signed off in triplicate to leave 30 minutes early one day. The people we have at Createful are all trustworthy adults who we don’t need to check up on;
  2. There aren’t these moments of dread at Createful; “Um, Becky, can we have a chat?” says a sombre looking middle manager clutching an envelope (I’ll just clear my desk now…) If we have a problem, we talk about it like humans. Obviously, if someone did something terrible we would need to deal with it appropriately – but please refer to point 1. Our people are awesome and don’t need archaic disciplinary procedures because Mildred in accounts saw them take home a company biro;
  3. We don’t take ourselves too seriously. We are here to create and innovate, whilst enjoying ourselves. Createful produce some immensely technically sound solutions, and our in-house talent is obscenely good – but we want to keep things fresh, playful and exciting. If we didn’t finish a week at work happy and having achieved great things, we wouldn’t be us;
  4. We are open and transparent. Touched on in points 1 & 2, we have the trust and respect for one another to not hide things or overly justify how busy we constantly are, whilst seeking praise for staying late that one time. We tell each other exactly what we’re working on – no smoke and mirrors necessary. We tell each other if we’ve seen a hilarious article online. We tell each other if we’re not happy. We tell each other if we are happy (which of course, we pretty much always are);
  5. We are all in it together. Createful isn’t a corporate entity with lower ranks putting in all the work so that the Board of Directors can make even more money. We all pull together to drive the business forward, and everyone takes ownership and pride in their own specialty. Createful is owner run, so the reasons Kriss, our MD, set up the company are still relevant and run through the veins of everyone here. That and coffee – coffee is really important to us too.

If we didn’t finish a week at work happy and having achieved great things, we wouldn’t be us.

Cheesy team shot

We’ve got it, but how do we keep it?

Admittedly, it’s much easier for us to maintain this type of culture due to our more “boutique” size. We know all too well that as a company grows, this culture becomes harder to maintain. The need for middle managers starts to appear, and occasionally a project lands that requires a quick scale up. So what do you do to make sure this culture isn’t diluted as you expand?

One way we think we could maintain this is through recruitment. By ensuring that someone is a cultural fit, trustworthy, diligent and above all, Createful in their way of thinking, we’d hope our ethos cascades down through new recruits and teams naturally. [inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=””]Employees are trustworthy, diligent, and above all, Createful in their way of thinking.[/inlinetweet]

We also are careful with the projects we take on and apply the same principles we share internally with our clients. By being transparent and honest, we can set realistic expectations for delivery without feeling the need to scale up aggressively as a knee jerk reaction, as this is often when you start to bring in the wrong types of people.

Colouring wall at Createful

Createful to the core

We feel that our culture is one of the most important things about Createful. After all, it’s what sets us aside from other places of work. Although change is inevitable, as we grow we want our core values to be the foundation upon which our future decisions are based.

Don’t just take our word for it – come in and see what makes Createful unique! Are you planning to talk to an agency for a web or app project, or maybe you’re looking to start working for a company with awesome values? Call us, email us, tweet us! We’d love to hear from you, and show you what can be achieved when you work the Createful way.

Or perhaps you are an agency that has managed to maintain your cultural identity through a scale up? We’d love to hear how you managed it! Do you agree with the points made above, or is this easier said than done?