Category: Blog

Turn up the creativity and dial down complacency: the SOUNDBOKS way

TURN UP THE CREATIVITY AND DIAL DOWN COMPLACENCY: THE SOUNDBOKS WAY

Author: Gabriella Anesio


In this interview, Frederik Laursen, Global Creative Team Lead at SOUNDBOKS, talks about how the company is so much more than just the product it sells; he also sheds light on what it’s like to work at SOUNDBOKS and the importance of feedback…P.S. his favourite artist is Stevie Wonder (or OG Pharrell Williams…the debate continues). 

SOUNDBOKS, founded in 2015, sells more than just speakers – it also sells a lifestyle that’s entirely unique and premised on the utter joy of people. Founded by three teenage friends with a passion for music and partying, SOUNDBOKS evolved from one of the most famous Danish music festivals – Roskilde Festival.

The three founders realised that something fundamental was missing on the market: a high-quality speaker that doesn’t require one million cables and a power outlet – how else are you meant to blast grime in the after-hours from your tent to keep the party going? Starting from a 19 year old’s garage with a bunch of friends, SOUNDBOKS now has a presence in Denmark (where it all started), the US (where the company has expanded to), and China (where production takes place), with 16 different nationalities making up the company.  

The speaker that speaks volumes

Companies sell products or services, that’s a matter of fact. What companies can also choose to sell is a lifestyle: a brand that is more than the product itself. That’s what everyone at SOUNDBOKS is trying to develop and sharpen. 

SOUNDBOKS, as a product in itself, is so much more than just a speaker – when people buy this product, it enables them to live a specific sort of lifestyle: it opens new doors, they meet new people, they become the life of the party. It’s, therefore, a social product. A speaker is something you rarely use on your own – it’s something you use with other people. It gathers people, creates a community. We’re trying to create a lifestyle brand around the “host”, aka the owner of the SOUNDBOKS who becomes a leader of the community, inspiring those around them.”

The speaker isn’t just a technical gadget, it’s a catalyst for a thriving social life, and, therefore, a booming social community – all thanks to a box with 66 x 43 x 32 cm dimensions. 

A company can be so much more than just the product it sells. Take Apple as an example; if one really wants to delve into the specs and numbers, there are competing brands that outperform Apple on a technical level, but what those other brands have failed to do is create a brand which makes purchasing a product more than just purchasing a product.

Buying an iPhone or iMac empowers people in a way that concerns more than just the gadget in question – and this is what the people at SOUNDBOKS are doing, too. 

“We had people reaching out to us telling us that they didn’t used to have many friends, but that now they’re being invited to lots of social events because they have the speaker. We heard so many of these stories that we quickly got inspired and decided to make the brand more than just the product – the speaker was just the catalyst for so much more.”

Creating a SOUNDBOKS community in and out of the office 

As Frederik says, SOUNDBOKS doesn’t only aim to inspire communities outside of the company, but there is an active effort to ensure that the SOUNDBOKS team itself stands as a community to be proud of.

Having started off as just a group of friends working together, the company has now developed a hiring strategy to ensure that it stays this way – a group of friends that can hang out together, eat together, and even travel together (as Frederik did with some of his colleagues to Greece not that long ago).

“One of the most important things about SOUNDBOKS is not just the community we have created through selling the speaker, but the community we have created inside the company itself.”

So, even though the company started out as a group of friends, this is actually still the case today, just with more people, nationalities, and ideas bopping around the office. 

There is another aspect to the hiring process that, just like the speakers, speaks volumes. Hiring for potential, not experience. 

My videographer is a prime example – he was my first hire, five years ago, straight out of highschool with no experience except some videos he created for himself. But he was this diamond in the rough. There were other applicants who had ten years of experience, but he was just the best in terms of his potential and trajectory. He has learnt and grown so much since. Because we have given him so much, he has also poured all of himself into SOUNDBOKS because he just wants to carry on learning.”

It can be tempting to view years of experience as a measure of potential of prospective employees – it’s a number, it’s quantifiable, and, thus, there must lie meaning in it; this can certainly sometimes be the case, but not always – and it’s thanks to people like Frederik that chances are given to those that can’t necessarily flash big numbers or an extensive list of references.

At the end of the day, years of experience does not equate to worth or superiority – worth lies within someone, not in a number on a piece of paper. 

Feedback is not your foe: start embracing it

There are several different ways of phrasing the word feedback: constructive criticism, advice, evaluation, suggestion etc. What feedback DOES NOT mean, but is most often associated with, is a personal attack.

Frederik and the SOUNDBOKS team are doing everything in their power to break down this stigma surrounding feedback. Instead of associating it with something negative, they’re encouraging people to find the value in it, even if it’s just one part of the entire piece given. 

Personally, from the beginning I knew I wasn’t perfect – this has made receiving feedback a lot easier. So whenever anyone ever gave me feedback, I just saw it as an opportunity for learning. Every piece of feedback, no matter the form it comes in or who it comes from, has something in it that you can use for something. Instead of trying to come up with excuses or explanations, figure out what parts of the feedback are relevant to you.

There’s a great lesson in this often overlooked because of the temptation to just entirely disregard all feedback given in the heat of the moment: feedback is not an objective truth, with every part of it acting as a prescription for change in your work.

Rather, even if there’s just one tiny part that makes you at least think, makes you potentially realise the value in someone else’s perspective, this is enough to stop complacency and push you to maybe reconsider certain aspects. Feedback is almost never about scrapping an entire piece of work – sometimes it’s just about encouraging small changes, a different approach, or pushing the work even further.

Even if you can never reach the stage, like Frederik, where you actually enjoy receiving feedback, the least one can do is stop interpreting feedback as a synonym for “this is sh*t”. 

You’ll never be at a point in your life where you’re perfect. You should never settle – then you get boring and lazy. The best way to grow and learn more, pushing yourself and your work further, is by receiving feedback.”

We’d like to thank Frederik Laursen for his observations and comments – find him and SOUNDBOKS on LinkedIn (or read more about the company on their website). 

If you’re interested in reading more about company culture, leadership and the like, check out the other posts on this blog here. You can also reach out to Nicolai Vittrup on LinkedIn, or use the contact form on this website to leave any comments or questions. To learn about everything SEO, PPC, and web-related, explore the content produced by Webamp

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Nicolai Vittrup on Company Culture: You can feel it. Smell it. See it.

NICOLAI VITTRUP ON COMPANY CULTURE: YOU CAN FEEL IT. SMELL IT. SEE IT. 

Author: Emily Hunt


Nicolai Vittrup, CEO of Webamp, is a leader who puts people first. He believes in cultivating an invigorating company culture that goes beyond office doors. Vittup is culture centered and community focused. 

Vittrup believes creating a strong company culture, or DNA, is a cornerstone of doing good business. That is, good people do good business. At Webamp, Vittrup seeks to make sure his colleagues and clients are healthy and happy. As CEO, he makes people his priority. Webamp’s company culture hinges on a balance of having fun and pushing each other to learn more and become better.  

For Vittrup, team bonding plays an important role in creating an atmosphere of not only high achievement, but also happiness. Community well-being is important to Vittrup. He puts a lot of effort and intentionality into providing outlets for his colleagues and clients to have fun and grow alongside one another. Vittrup remarks,

“We do a lot of things to promote team bonding here at WebAmp, but I don’t think we do enough. I want to do more. I care about my colleagues and clients’ happiness.”

In an interview, Vittrup shares many of the various ways Webamp is currently focusing on happiness and team bonding. For example, the team meets on a weekly basis for group fitness. Vittrup says Webamp even works with a trainer so that everyone on the team can work on their personal wellness goals. Nicolai Vittrup is aware of how others take note of Webamp’s culture and believes it is what makes the company standout. He wants people to see Webamp’s core values as something that extends into the greater community. 

The culture: You can feel it. Smell it. See it.

According to Nicolai Vittrup, Webamp has a unique culture where people want to be, stay, and inspire others. It is a company culture people can feel, smell, and see. That is, it permeates whatever space it enters. Vittrup believes that Webamp’s culture is distinct because of its people-centered mindset. His goal is to draw others into what Webamp is doing. He states,

“It is always, ‘How can we do something great and get others to see it?’ Not just because they have to see it, but because culture is everything.”

Vittrup holds that company culture truly is everything. He shares that if a company has a solid culture, or DNA, good work will follow. It is easier to work as a team when everyone is on the same page. Likewise, according to Vittrup, a consistent company culture lends itself to creative inspiration that comes from the inside. The team knows how to propel Webamp forward on its own. 

Happiness is a part of culture & learning

In brief, Vittrup recognizes that the key to effective learning is happiness. Therefore, he places a lot of value in making his team’s happiness and integral part of Webamp’s company culture. For Vittrup, when people are happy learning happens naturally. He shares, 

“If you are happy in life it is very easy to learn. If you are not happy, then you cannot learn. That’s my take on it. We invest a lot in the people.” 

According to Vittrup, happiness leads to profound curiosity. Curious people are drawn to learning. Nicolai Vittrup believes that Webamp’s culture is one that fosters happiness and curious learners. He emphasizes that he has drafted  a team of passionate, innovative high achievers. However, Vittrup believes Webamp still has lots of room to grow and become better from the inside out. 

Looking for more on company culture? Check out Nicolai Vittrup’s blog.  Still eager for more? See Webamp for tips on SEO, PPC and all things web. If you have questions or comments for Nicolai Vittrup, please use the contact form on this website or connect with him on LinkedIn.

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Advertising, TikTok, and the Pope: A Senior Art Director’s Perspective

ADVERTISING, TIKTOK, AND THE POPE: A SENIOR ART DIRECTOR’S PERSPECTIVE 

Author: Gabriella Anesio


Ole Bager Hoffmann, Senior Art Director at &Co, spoke with Webamp about his creative process, prioritising the target audience, and what it really means to be innovative. 

&Co is a creative advertising agency, with the word creative being the driving force behind it all. Another key word that represents the foundation of &Co is collaboration – this pertains to collaboration between colleagues, collaboration with clients, and collaboration across campaigns; everything is done in a collaborative fashion with common, strategic goals set to guide each party through the whole journey. As Senior Art Director, Ole is an integral part of setting these strategic and creative goals at the company, with a flair for innovation and a motivation to create art beyond the ordinary. 

Be entertaining to beat competing entertainment

As a creative ad agency, one of the biggest challenges is to make sure that creative output captures the target audience of clients, thereby ensuring clients “outcompete” their competition on the market. But the parameters of what defines competition is not as static as companies selling similar products – this old-school definition of competition is in a face-to-face altercation with…the internet.  

Today, competition can be anything from a competing company to an entirely irrelevant Instagram post of a talking parrot. Intuitively this might not make sense, but in reality this is the case – the job of any ad agency is to create something so innovative or compelling that people can’t help but to look, read, investigate more. In other words, it’s not only about getting customers to invest in a product, it’s first and foremost about getting prospective customers to invest enough TIME to even consider the product at hand. As Ole says:

“I think, being in an agency that does a lot of online content, the biggest competition comes from entertainment. Before we even talk about competing with other companies within the category, our output has to compete with all the entertainment that’s flooding people’s feed. If we want people to interact with our communication, we have to be as entertaining as the TikTok video they could’ve watched instead.” 

It’s easy to say good advertising is just about capturing a defined target audience, but in actuality it’s so much more than that: it’s about capturing their attention, time, energy, will, and mustering so much interest in what’s being sold that they can’t dismiss it with a quick swipe on their phones.

This links to the need to be innovative, innovative enough to make people not only interested in purchasing a certain product, but interested in the product itself and the values behind it – even if it’s something so simple as a shampoo bottle. But what does innovation actually mean? Ole answered this question with a simple, yet thought-provoking, response:

“To me, truly innovative thinking goes beyond solving problems. It’s about expanding the playing field. Making the world a bit bigger. A couple of friends I know are starting their own paint-company and when they pitched it to me they said: “In the future, when throwing a party at home, we want people to think: What meal should I serve? How should I decorate the table? What colour should I have on the wall?” – I think that’s innovation. Broadening the minds of people.”

Redefining mindsets held, frameworks imposed, questions asked, emotions expressed – all of this is innovation at its core, and that’s what everyone at &Co is trying to do with every campaign they work on. 

The Catholic Church and branding 

Ole managed to draw a parallel between two very different universes: the Catholic Church and the ability to create a strong brand. This is how he made the connection:

“Not so long ago, I saw the film The Two Popes. It depicts the transition between Pope Benedict and Pope Francis. Anthony Hopkins (Pope Benedict) delivers a great line that really stuck with me: “A church that marries the spirit of the age will be widowed in the next”. I won’t go into whether that’s true for the Catholic church, but I think it carries a great truth when it comes to branding. I think it’s about creating a brand-platform that has longevity and is able to give birth to campaigns that interact with the zeitgeist without compromising the essence of the brand.” 

Timelessness. We hear this phrase a lot in the world of advertising, but rarely can it be whittled down into such an explicit depiction as Ole’s Catholic Church analogy. Timelessness doesn’t purely have to pertain to a campaign or brand itself, but to the feelings that are attached to, and left from, it. If a brand can evoke a certain feeling from customers throughout its lifespan, the advertising must be doing something right. 

But creating timelessness is easier said than done. Creating a feeling of seamlessness throughout and across various campaigns for a single brand is a hurdle Ole and his creative team have to deal with for all of &Co’s clients. 

“To be honest, jumping from campaign to campaign, all with different KPI’s and whatnot can be confusing, and I would be lying if I said I always have the complete overview. But I think the best way to keep yourself balanced is to remember what the job is about, remember what your role is. And to me, being a creative is not about representing your client and their products. It’s about representing their consumers. To dig out human insights within the target group that ensures the communication is relevant. Stay an outsider. Don’t get caught up in their world.”

A seemingly obvious, but crucial, message lies within this. Being on the creative team, above all else, means creating work for the purpose of inspiring the target audience, not the clients themselves. Obviously by satisfying the audience, you satisfy the client, but the fundamental purpose of all creativity is to impact prospective customers. That’s what makes campaigns successful.

Speaking of succeeding, Ole left a message about how he knows when he’s created a masterpiece – an amusing message, yet a message that most likely, secretly, resonates with most: 

“To me, the best way to know if we are onto something good is if I feel the urge to show the campaign to my parents.”

And with that final, profound, message, a big thank you goes to Ole Bager Hoffmann for his participation in this interview. To keep up with Ole’s journey, find him on LinkedIn, and see what &Co is up to on their website

For more posts on anything from marketing to entrepreneurship, see other articles on Nicolai Vittrup’s blog. Also, check out Webamp for tips on SEO, PPC and everything web. To leave any questions or comments for Nicolai Vittrup, use the contact form on this website or connect with him on LinkedIn.

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Measuring Success: The Webamp DNA

MEASURING SUCCESS: THE WEBAMP DNA

Author: Gabriella Anesio


Nicolai Vittrup, founder and CEO of Webamp, spoke in this interview about the ‘DNA’ of Webamp, what it’s like to be a part of the team, and redefining what it means to be successful. 

Founder and entrepreneur Nicolai Vittrup believes one of the most integral parts of his company is its DNA. Company culture is one thing, but the DNA goes much deeper than this, and has more profound repercussions on the day-to-day workings of Webamp. Company culture, as the name suggests, is something within the confinements of the company itself – it’s the team spirit embodied by everyone at work, a way of getting things done, a team mentality. The Webamp DNA however, is something that you can’t dissociate from when not in the office – it’s something you take home with you every day and keep with you 24/7, because, essentially, it IS you.  

“The Webamp DNA is not about the environment or the job, nothing about that. It’s all internal. It’s not about how many clients you have at a certain point – as long as you can relate to all the bullet points that define the DNA, then that’s how you know you will thrive at Webamp.”

A mindset is not something that you can switch off once the clocks strike five and you pack up to go home. It’s also not something you can learn that easily. Nicolai believes that you can see whether someone has the Webamp mindset before they even join the company. For him, if he can see a specific kind of passion and determination in someone during interviews, it’s an indication that they’re the right fit for the Webamp way – the DNA. 

For example, one of the criteria that defines the DNA at this digital agency is being true to yourself. This is not something you should learn whilst on the job, this is something you should bring with you when you join the company. It’s the technical details you’re supposed to learn once you start, not the core mindset. 

Measuring success using the Webamp DNA 

Asking those in managerial positions how they measure success of employees is always interesting because the answers are always so diverse and unique to the company in question. In this case, Nicolai makes it clear that success has nothing to do with external factors, but instead is related to how well someone aligns with the Webamp DNA. 

“Success all comes down to the Webamp mindset; if you don’t have it, you will have a tough time succeeding. If you meet all the criteria in the Webamp mindset, it will be next to impossible for you to fail. But if you are in the Webamp mindset if/when you fail, then it’s ok because we know you TRIED to do the right thing.”

To help with the process of aligning to the Webamp values, Nicolai and the team created a personalised handbook for prospective employees to familiarise themselves with. The incredibly detailed handbook is designed to ease the onboarding process, and remove the potential anxiety of what the company will be like to work in for those joining the team. The handbook could be given to a complete stranger on the other side of earth, and, after reading it, they would understand what Webamp does, how things are done, what the people are like – the DNA. 

Importantly, the DNA is made up of everyone at Webamp; the DNA isn’t designed by those at the top and “copy/pasted” to everyone else. The DNA is simply an accumulation of the work ethics and values of everyone that helps make Webamp what it is today. 

“It’s kind of like Jenga. If you pull one key piece out, the whole company crumbles. That’s why one person, including me the founder and CEO, is not the entire company, but just one piece – like all employees are their own piece and the whole company will tumble if you ‘pull any one of us out’.”

Thank you to Nicolai Vittrup for his words about what makes a company unique and successful – you can reach out to him on LinkedIn or use the contact form on the blog

To read about SEO, PPC, and other web-related services, check out Webamp

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Hidden Talents: Something you may not realise your employees have

HIDDEN TALENTS: SOMETHING YOU MAY NOT REALISE YOUR EMPLOYEES HAVE

Author: Gabriella Anesio


Webamp spoke with Anders Nimb, Sales and Marketing Manager at Racoon Rengøring & Ejendomsservice. The focus of this interview was company culture, something which Anders has a lot of experience with from Racoon – a business that prides itself on company culture that goes above and beyond the ordinary.

Racoon is a cleaning company providing an array of services for properties. Thomas Rodenberg started Racoon in 1998 with a mission to provide high quality cleaning. He was tired of the sloppiness and the misdeeds that were in the industry. Thomas Rodenberg ended up being the creator and grandfather of the culture everyone has adopted, and continues to develop, in Racoon today. With regard to this, since its establishment in 1998, there has been one thing that has always remained a priority: exceptional company culture. Good company culture is something that almost every business will advertise and claim, but Racoon takes it not just one, but ten steps further, integrating a plethora of mechanisms to ensure voices are always heard, people stay connected, and the fun never stops.

Coming into work is an experience, not a chore

Now, more than ever, there has been incessant talk about making office spaces comfortable, dynamic, and fun. But how does one actually go about this? How can you make an office, where you work, a place you actually enjoy going? At Racoon, they have countless methods of doing this, and they believe that you need to actively invest money in not only your employees, but where your employees work and what surrounds them. This is what Anders had to say on the topic:

“As you walk around the offices, you’re greeted by a giant wall you can draw on, a slush ice machine, a bar, a living room, free drinks, different kinds of games and the world’s best coffee machine. We also have our own host who cooks for us, makes sure our premises are neat, and ensures all colleagues get a healthy meal during the day. Furthermore, we have an ambassador selected by 12 employees who’s in charge of bringing their ideas to life. We do this because those of us in management may not be the best at knowing what our employees would like. It’s essential to get employees to be co-determinants of culture and, thus, help make Racoon unique.”

Actively deciding to initially invest a large sum of money into your people and office was Racoon’s approach. Accepting this initial financial blow was, according to Anders, worth it for the thriving team that has managed to blossom because of it. Not only is it about investing in your employees, it’s about actively predicating company culture on them, as employees are the ones, at the end of the day, that make the company what it is. 

“At Racoon, it is desirable that the culture arises from the employees and not just the management. Our premises and offices are designed according to well-being and not just production. Each colleague decides for themselves what their office should look like. There are virtually no limits to what one may and may not do. If you take a walk in our premises, you will discover that each room is a new experience. It is constantly evolving.”

Before choosing to invest in things to make the team happy and motivated, the first step is to invest in the team members themselves – this requires hiring the right people, a duty which Anders takes very seriously. Anders approaches it from a very social perspective; for him, skills are something that can always be taught, improved, or adapted, but being a fundamentally nice and social person cannot be. That’s why it’s necessary to really look out for strong social skills when hiring. With this, someone can develop both as an employee and as a team member – both of which are crucial for the development of strong company culture.

Honesty is tough, but necessary 

Throughout the processes of hiring new team members, strengthening company culture, and, of course, doing great business, Anders makes sure one value remains, a value he holds close to his heart: honesty.  

“My most cherished value is honesty; I want to be honest with myself and my employees. I decided long ago that I should be an honest person in life. Someone that you can count on. As part of the Racoon management, I use that value every day. I want my colleagues to know me and who I am. I think too many people hide because they are afraid to be honest. Let’s be honest, how many people do you know who dare to express their honest opinion? To be honest and use one’s opinion will for some be tantamount to conflict. I approach it the other way around. By being honest and constructive, we solve problems right away.”

As illuminated by Anders, often conflated are honesty and being mean, leading to hostility. But they aren’t synonymous, and it’s very dangerous to associate the two. Honesty comes down to being truthful not only to those around you, but to yourself. If you are being 100% honest, if anything, you are being respectful, as opposed to mean. There are those that think being honest means delivering news in an aggressive way, with negative connotations only. As Anders shows through his way of doing things at Racoon, honesty should be associated with something positive – whether you are being transparent about something so small as your favourite hobby, or something so big as struggling to meet certain goals or expectations. 

Hidden talents and changing responsibilities

Hiring someone for the talents (practical or social) they possess is completely rational. There is something else that is also very rational, but not often considered: the person you hire may excel at something you didn’t initially hire them for, or expect them to be good at – whether this is a talent they already had before coming to the company, or a talent they developed once they joined. Hidden talents: this is something Anders and his team at Racoon have the utmost respect for, and seek it out on a daily basis. 

“A typical Racoon starts in one function but grows and ends in another function. We want our employees to develop. Right from the cleaning staff to our office staff. We do this by spotting the hidden talents. We are all more than we seem. We have several colleagues in Racoon who have started in one position and developed into something completely different. In fact, we have an active agenda around what we call: Hidden Talents. If you have a talent, we are happy to support it.”

Everyone knows the expressions ‘don’t take things at face value’, ‘not everything is as it seems’, ‘never judge a book by its cover’. All of these resonate with what Anders says about hidden talent; you may think you are hiring the best accountant out there, and maybe they are the best at this, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have other invaluable skills you can also make use of. And sometimes it’s about seeing potential and nurturing that until it develops into something powerful. It might sound obvious, but it’s really not: remember your colleagues and employees are bright people and have unlimited potential – make the most of it!

A warm thank you to Anders Nimb for his comments on company culture at Racoon! To connect with him, find him and Racoon on LinkedIn (or Racoon’s website). 

If you’re interested in company culture, check out other posts on Nicolai Vittrup’s blog, and reach out to him on LinkedIn with any questions you may have. For more information on SEO, PPC, and everything web-related, go on over to Webamp

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How to create a scalable marketing department: 5 pieces of advice from a marketing director

HOW TO CREATE A SCALABLE MARKETING DEPARTMENT: 5 PIECES OF ADVICE FROM A MARKETING DIRECTOR

Author: Gabriella Anesio


In this interview, Glen Hagensen, Marketing Director at Templafy, gave five pointers for creating a scalable marketing department. These are the main takeaways: 1) testing and data over opinions and vanity metrics, 2) only invest in initiatives that are scalable, 3) respond to change over following a plan, 4) collaboration over silos and hierarchy, and 5) fail big and fail fast. 

Templafy is the first of its kind: the B2B SaaS company, founded in 2014, offers a software solution that ensures all documents, presentations and emails are always on brand, legally compliant, and easy for the user to create. For the laypeople, this means all documents belonging to an organisation can be created, shared, organised and managed in an efficient and compliant manner, across all employees, regardless of location or department. Glen Hagensen, who has been a part of it all since 2015, has accumulated almost a decade of marketing experience through all his positions, including his role as Marketing Director at Templafy. In this interview, he lays out his scalable marketing manifesto, placing emphasis on actionable metrics, scalability, agility, flat hierarchies, and encouraging failure. 

Testing and data over opinions and vanity metrics – especially when it hurts​

There are innumerable metrics out there that are branded as being able to measure a company’s growth, successes, failures, speed bumps etc. The challenge arises when choosing which ones to trust and use. That’s where the distinction between actionable and vanity metrics needs to be made, according to Glen. 

“Vanity metrics are metrics that look good on paper but don’t provide actual value to the company and they don’t indicate directly whether or not an initiative is bringing value to the bottom line. It’s easy to make data look good and validate that what you do is working, but always be aware of what you are tracking and how that relates to the bigger picture and the goals you are actually trying to achieve.”

Vanity metrics are, thus, the equivalent in the marketing world of BMI in the health world – presumptuous numbers without any real value or meaning behind them and their decimal points. 

Glen used the example of lead generation to illuminate the case being made here. Of course, lead generation is vital – lots of leads intuitively signals something positive for a start-up. However, it’s not enough to look at the number of leads, you need to look at who the leads are, and ask yourself this question: are they the types of people that will actually buy into the brand and product? If the answer is no, the big, palpable, number you might initially have been admiring could be rendered entirely irrelevant if over half the people turn out to be superficial leads. 

“What we need to measure are indicators that have a direct impact on business, and by that I mean the bottom line. In Templafy, that’s ARR. If you want to scale a B2B software company, you need to know exactly which initiatives generate cash and return on advertising spend. That’s why it’s important to know exactly how much money it costs to generate 1$, as well as knowing where the return is highest so you can spend more money there.”

Let’s break that down: ARR = Annual Recurring Revenue. At the end of the day, ROAS (return on investment) is the most basic, yet integral, piece of information you can track: company growth in the form of revenue creation. According to Glen, revenue can never fall into the category of vanity metrics because it is, by far, the most tangible and actionable metric to depict how successfully a start-up is growing. Lots of money, good; pennies, bad. 

Then again, Glen also made sure to hone in on the point that just because a metric doesn’t directly show revenue numbers, it doesn’t mean it’s useless – as long as they’re used in conjunction with other indicators and you are aware that the numbers are fairly superficial. They can be used to indicate if you are on the right path which is also valuable when used correctly. The crux of it all is just to be able to discern the difference between measures that actually measure something, and measures that simply, superficially, look good (actionable metric = clearly indicates success according to goals; vanity metric = no clear connection to goals). But knowing which metrics to use and when can be really difficult in the world of marketing, where everyone seems to think they have the right answer. 

“Sometimes everyone seems to be a marketing expert. Everyone will have an opinion on what good marketing is and the latest trends. You have to be able, as a marketeer, to keep an open mind, but also be clear on what your purpose and goal is. Everyone will always have an opinion, but without data, you’re just another person with an opinion – if you can’t test an opinion, you need to go in a different direction or modify the idea so you can. You should always be able to verify if what you’re doing is working – otherwise there’s no way you can scale!”

Only invest in initiatives that are scalable 

Marketing 101: there’s a difference between scaling and growing. Simply put, the former is growth at an exponential rate in proportion to the initial investment, and the latter is revenue creation proportional to the money put in at the start. That’s why Glen stresses all start-ups should always be critical of initiatives that seem tempting simply because many others do it – just because others do it doesn’t mean it actually helps scaling plans or aligns to the overall goals. 

You’ll know if an initiative is scalable if you can prove that you’ll have an exponential spend-to-revenue ratio (more money in – exponentially more money out), according to the Templafy Marketing Director. However, when it comes to investing money in the marketing and sales department itself, there arises the classic chicken and the egg paradox. Which comes first? Investing in the marketing team or investing in sales? 

If you invest in marketing first, there might not be enough salespeople to deal with the rapidly growing number of customers, but if you invest in sales first, there might not be enough leads for them to work with initially. And you don’t know how the actual growth trajectory of the company will turn out – so if you invest in both at the same time, then how much in each bucket?  

The golden answer was provided by Glen, who has personally dealt with this chicken and the egg problem before:

“At some point, if you want to truly scale, then you need a strong sales team. No sales team – no customers. You have to be willing, at some point, to invest in extra for salespeople and then trusting that the marketing investment will pay off.”

Respond to change over following a plan​

This one is fairly self-explanatory. If you’re a marketing nerd, low-key or high-key, you’ll probably have heard of the Agile Marketing Manifesto – an approach to marketing usurped from an established style of software development. The premise is this: agility, flexibility, collaboration, adaptation, iteration etc. 

“When you’re a small company, one of your strongest competitive edges is that you are agile and you can quickly change according to what happens in the world. I’m never going to make a detailed marketing plan for the entire year pinpointing exactly what will happen each month. It’s slow, stagnant and inefficient and what seems to be a proactive setup at first all of a suddenly turns reactive. What will happen in the next year is unpredictable, so you need to be nimble to adapt to the unexpected – like COVID. If you’re sticking to a plan you made in January, an unexpected change can make the plan entirely obsolete. Of course you should have yearly goals and a clear strategy to get there, but having overly detailed plans will make you fall behind from the very beginning.”

Not much more can be added to this, except a completely random analogy that just seems appropriate to throw in: one of the main features of earthquake-proof buildings is a flexible foundation that moves along with the earthquake, as opposed to being so rigid it snaps at the instant shock. This means the foundations absorb a large part of the quake to prevent the actual building from moving too much. As for any company: be agile enough to adapt to new circumstances that may arise, therefore ensuring your growth can remain as stable as possible. 

Collaboration over silos and hierarchy

Another fairly self-explanatory point, but one that Glen explains eloquently:

“I would at all times prefer to work in a company with a flat hierarchy. Everyone should be able to vocalise when they don’t necessarily agree with something, or have an idea for change. That’s what I mean by a flat hierarchy. If you are ever faced with a manager pulling title, I suggest that you run away screaming. The best idea should always win – no matter who comes up with it. But collaboration isn’t constrained to the marketing department only. One of my favourite quotes comes from David Packard: “Marketing is Too Important to be Left to the Marketing Department.” Take advise and input from your entire company and include them in your work.”

Collaboration doesn’t only affect professional output, it also, naturally, affects dynamics between people and the personal environment in and out of the workplace. Glen does point out that, at the end of the day, a decision has to be made, so the team can’t deliberate on something forever. But if it’s made clear from the start that decisions are to be made at a certain pace, with justification of course, then time management should rarely be an issue.

Fail big and fail fast 

Everyone fails at some point(s), this is common knowledge, and if you don’t think you’ve ever failed at anything, then I’m fairly certain you’ve failed at telling yourself the truth. Ultimately, failing doesn’t mean you failed at every single aspect of something – sometimes, as Glen says, it just means you failed to reach a certain goal. But that doesn’t mean you didn’t learn anything in the process, and it doesn’t mean you got zero benefits from the experience. 

“The faster you fail, the faster you learn how to improve – I think that’s a rather well-know and established notion. However, failing big is equally important. I see a lot of people testing something in a scale way too small to enable them to gather enough data to conclude whether what was being tested failed or succeeded. Resources were spent, but not enough to get an answer. And if you do this again and again, you’re just wasting resources without ever learning anything. When you want to test something to see if it’s worth investing in, test on a big enough scale to be able to know the results of the test weren’t just a fluke. Don’t half-ass it, go all in.”

Failing as fast as you can is the most well-known approach, but failing big is usually underrated. Spending incremental sums of money on big initiatives is just bad math. To truly deduce whether something will be successful in the long-run, you need to trust the process, which means using substantial sums of money to know if something works. If it doesn’t, c’est la vie – you failed, but learnt a lesson. Then at least you know, for the next time, that option X absolutely does not work, but that option Z seems the more viable option. 

Scaling is all about being willing to fail and repeating processes until you get the solution.

The final, overarching, message left by the marketing whizz is this: for any company to be able to calculate their success, they need to calculate what they put in, and what they get out – this ratio is golden. 

A massive thanks to Glen Hagensen for his scalable marketing manifesto. To learn more about his work, find him and Templafy on LinkedIn (or Templafy’s website). 

If you want to learn more about the ins and outs of marketing, continue reading at Nicolai Vittrup’s blog. For information on SEO, PPC, and everything web-related, check out Webamp. To reach out to Nicolai Vittrup himself, fill out the contact form on this website or find him on LinkedIn.

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A young entrepreneur with insights into young people, talent, and change

A YOUNG ENTREPRENEUR WITH INSIGHTS INTO YOUNG PEOPLE, TALENT, AND CHANGE

Author: Gabriella Anesio


Webamp spoke with Andreas von der Recke, co-founder of YoungConsult, about young talent and sparking change in the way things are traditionally done in the world of business. Andreas gave his two cents on everything from the main struggles young people face, misconceptions of the youth, to what it means to have talent. 

YoungConsult is an organisation dedicated to helping other organisations. The main undertaking is to assist companies in utilising their employees, company culture, and existing frameworks – with a focus on integrating and developing young talent. It was exactly this subject of young talent that was the focus of this insightful interview with Andreas, where he discussed his own experiences as a young entrepreneur. 

The science behind talent 

Quantifying talent and finding its source might seem, at first glance, quite frankly impossible. Science proves otherwise. Andreas spoke about the necessity of understanding the difference between genuine talent and trivial knowledge or superficial skills. Considering the infinite amount of information that almost everybody has access to nowadays, at the click of a button, rocket science is no longer…rocket science – but being an actual rocket scientist is. 

What this means is that being well-versed in something isn’t impossible when all it takes is a google search and an e-book to educate yourself on literally any topic. However, applying those skills in a profession or job role is an entirely different thing – this is what requires true talent, and not just the ability to read and retain information. And this is what employers should be keeping in mind when hiring. As Andreas says:

“The fact that everyone today has access to such a vast amount of information at the click of a button means you can’t as easily tie knowledge and skills to the whole concept of talent – it’s about the application of it. In terms of entrepreneurship, along the lines of what Gary Vaynerchuck said, ideas are not necessarily anything special until it comes to their execution – execution is the key.”

To put the science behind talent in layman’s terms, certain theories dictate that everyone is actually born with the same set of talents and skills, but the way our synapses work changes how much we “train” those skills as we grow up. This means that everyone, through different experiences and, thereby, different “training” of synaptic connections, has a unique set of skills and synaptic connections. Thus, we may be born with the same sets of talents, but…life…makes them unique for each individual. 

A similar line of thinking applies to the concept of experience. Experience is something that anyone can get in any field should the opportunity happen to arise. However, asking for experience as the only requirement in a job offer can be, and usually is, entirely misleading. Basing job applications solely on experience misconstrues the reality that not all experience can actually be transferred, according to Andreas.

“It’s been scientifically proven that experience isn’t always transferable, but I still see a lot of people hiring for experience. When you’re hiring, it’s important not just to know what you want done, but HOW you want it done – everything comes back to company culture because a prospective employee isn’t just joining the company, they’re joining the company culture, too. Eventually, they’ll also be influencing the company. The Danish expression ‘Culture-Carrier’ comes in handy here, as it refers to someone who embodies organisational culture.”

Integral to hiring practices should, thus, be an acknowledgment of how suitable someone’s application of skills and knowledge is to the specific job role at hand. Furthemore, the necessity to take company culture into consideration should also not be underplayed. As Andreas says, it’s not always simply about the tasks you expect an employee to perform, it’s also how you expect them to execute the tasks, and this can very much come down to the purpose of the organisation and existing mindsets, approaches, and frameworks – that’s where Andreas steps in. 

“My job is not to adapt certain people’s views, it’s to translate them. Linked to this, I see culture as a way of getting things done. That’s why it differs from company to company. The old way of doing things is making a strategy and setting long-term goals with a detailed plan of how to get there – but that doesn’t always align with the culture. Changing the culture is extremely difficult and also extremely slow. If you have a purpose then the whole culture must be worked around it, and then the only reason why a strategy won’t fit is because it’s not aligned with the purpose.”

The psychology behind change: fear

Entering the world of business with a mission to help organisations improve their existing frameworks and systems, Andreas has faced several challenges and critical voices. The well-known stereotype associated with change is that of scepticism and doubt – change can be scary. Suggesting change can also come off as offensive, as the 27-year-old entrepreneur pointed out. 

“The main critical voice that I face is a defensive one, which I totally understand. It’s a scepticism which is not based on disagreement, but more in fear that something new is happening without understanding it. And if someone doesn’t understand something, it’s tempting to repel it.”

Instead of being adamant about changing something (stereotypical of someone from Gen Z, if you buy into the generation argument), Andreas does everything in his power to adopt a pragmatic approach. This means cooperation. This means adapting. And, most importantly, this means understanding why the ones resisting change are resisting. That’s why:

 “To change the establishment, you need to know and understand how the establishment works.”

This is a lesson valuable not only for those in the same business as Andreas, but a lesson for anyone who has ever tried to change someone’s opinion on something – and if not change, then at least adapt, or try to influence. There’s only so far you’ll get by blindly preaching your own values and not being willing to acknowledge another opinion. 

Bringing this back to the topic of young talent and the plight for organisational excellence, when asking Andreas what he thought the main struggle was for young people trying to make it, professionally, he stated:

“The main challenge is knowing what the challenge is, but not having the self-awareness to know what to do about it. Putting your knowledge and skills into play is something incredibly tricky because not all young people know exactly what they’re good at. They might know what they want to do, or what they want to change, but they don’t know how. That’s what makes experience and collaboration so integral to personal growth.”

Combining this challenge with the common *mis*conceptions of young people – including a sense of entitlement, crumbling under pressure, and having their heads in the clouds – Andreas believes that it’s certainly tough to be young and trying to break through the glass ceiling of established organisational bureaucracy and politics. But there is one misconception above all others that he firmly believes doesn’t have any legs to stand on: that young people aren’t taken seriously. 

“For the past five years, as long as I have been a part of this movement, I don’t think there has ever been a time when young people have been given so much space to speak their minds. When we go way back to the elders running the tribes, and when you go back as recently as our parents’ generation, things were more meritocratic, but today there’s a whole other focus and respect for young people – that’s driven by the realisation that the challenges we face today are not going to be solved by using old methods or perspectives.”

And with that, a special thanks are in order for Andreas von der Recke and his observations regarding young talent and helping organisations reach their fullest potential. To keep up with the work of YoungConsult, check them out at their website or on LinkedIn

If you want to read more about entrepreneurship, company culture, leadership, or marketing, see Nicolai Vittrup’s blog or reach out to Nicolai Vittrup himself on LinkedIn. For everything SEO-, PPC-, and web-related, go on over to Webamp

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Nicolai Vittrup on Leadership: It’s important to focus on intentional team building

NICOLAI VITTRUP ON LEADERSHIP: IT’S IMPORTANT TO FOCUS ON INTENTIONAL TEAM BUILDING

Author: Emily Hunt


Nicolai Vittrup, CEO of WebAmp, is a leader who thinks a lot about company culture and even more about people. He is an empathetic leader who looks to his colleagues for inspiration. Vittrup shares that doing good business hinges on intentionally cultivating a community of passionate high achievers.

Although Nicolai Vittrup is CEO of the Copenhagen company Webamp, he humbly acknowledges that much of his success as a leader comes from the team he works alongside. Effective business begins with cultivating a strong community of people who are all committed to success. Vittrup shares the influence of his team:

“I actually never look at other companies because I really enjoy being inspired by the people I work with, not to copy. When you have high performers you don’t have to think a lot about leadership. At Webamp, we are a team of inspiring, high performers.”

For Vittrup, inspiration comes from within the company because he believes that his colleagues know Webamp better than anyone else and can do the best job of propelling it forward. Innovation that stays true to Webamp’s DNA comes from within.

Two Keys to Effective Team Building:

1) Passion 

According to Nicolai Vittrup, passion always burns and he can see the sparks in someone’s eyes if they are truly passionate about what they are doing. For him, this fire is an integral part of a good team members. He is cultivating a community that cares about not only their work, but also other people at Webamp.

2) Culture

When assessing whether or not someone will be able to seamlessly assimilate into Webamp’s culture Vittrup asks two questions. Namely, “How well can you adapt?” and  “How quickly can you adapt?” For Vittrup, one’s willingness and ability to adapt quickly makes them an optimal team member. Things are constantly changing, so a great team member must be able and willing to adjust in order to stay ahead of the curve.

Vittrup believes skills are easy to learn, but culture and personality are much more difficult. One can try it, but it is really hard. He states, 

“After 5 years of doing this my stomach is quite good at spotting talent. It is important to cultivate a team of high performers. I look for people who are passionate and will be able to adapt to Webamp’s culture.” 

At Webamp, Nicolai Vittrup has intentionally built up a team of passionate, collaborative leaders. He is an empathetic leader who recognizes the unique skills of his colleagues and seeks to help make them even better. As a leader, he prioritizes the people around him because he believes they are the most inspirational.

For more on leadership see Nicolai Vittrup’s blog. Additionally, see Webamp for tips on SEO, PPC and all things web. If you have questions or comments for Nicolai Vittrup, please use the contact form on this website or connect with him on LinkedIn.

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A year of change and reevalution

A YEAR OF CHANGE AND RE-EVALUATION

Author: Sophie Moore


Nicolai Vittrup of Webamp reflects on his vision for the future of his company, adapting to change and the storm of a year that 2020 has been so far.

After five years of establishment, Webamp is not the same company it was in the beginning, back when it existed only as the brainchild of its founder Nicolai Vittrup. Over the years it has grown and adapted to challenges as any company should and must continue to do for the years to come. The future can be a daunting and scary place for anyone, not just for business owners and having a vision can help create foundations to build upon in the present. For Nicolai, this vision is simple : to grow, but not to grow too quickly. Webamp has one of the best teams in the field that they’ve ever had, each person knows their role and rises to the challenge of ensuring that each department runs smoothly in sync with the others.

“Next we’re going to expand into the realm of social media. We’re going to put a lot of time into getting the right sales and continue to ensure that our clients are very happy. If you want to grow, you need to have happy clients, that’s a huge focus for us right now.”

Wiser words could not have been said. Happy clients are how you know you’re delivering on what you’re promising as a company. You can wax lyrical about the merits of your business and the way you do things but unless you actually follow through and deliver on these things you may as well be talking into thin air. Changing the way you do things to adapt to the evolution of your client’s needs is the most important thing you can do as a company.

Every time you reach a milestone it is important to take a step back and evaluate what you can do differently in order to reach the next one. For Webamp, the marker for evaluation is always the success of the customer experience they provide for everyone that they represent. It is how they determine what they’re thriving in and what needs to be improved. This year especially has called for everyone in the world to take a second to reevaluate literally every aspect of their lives. 2020 has turned the world upside down, brought along unforeseen challenges in every direction and redefined what our lives look like. The pandemic has changed so much, shifted the values of people, businesses and organisations and adapting to such shifts are paramount to survival in a world unrecognisable to our past selves.

Shifts such as a rise in ecommerce and the need to adapt to a world that needs to keep its distance from each other has meant that businesses such as Webamp and their clients have had to change the way they do things.

“It’s just about finding out how the world is looking right now, because we had to shift to working month to month, you need to try to have a perspective of what is going on, and what’s going to go on in three or four months.”

Covid-19 brought about the abrupt closing down of the future, we went from being able to plan months, even years in advance, to being unable to say for certain how things would look from one week to the next. In a seemingly randomised lottery of unfolding events, some businesses have managed to stay afloat amidst the raging storm of uncertainty while others have found themselves swept away by the thundering waves of change, powerless to the sheer voracity by which the world evolved. The only way forward is to attempt to build a life raft to carry you through whatever wave crashes by next. To plan for the unknown is almost impossible and yet it must be attempted to have any hopes of making it out the other end.

For Webamp this has meant evaluating what changes they can make to protect both the businesses they represent but also the team of dedicated employees that show up to the office every day despite the dangers of the outside world.

“Cases are on the rise again here, so now we’re going to go back to not hugging each other in the morning, such an integral part of our day, of building relationships with each other. Instead we’re going to just do knuckles again, we just need to keep each other safe, keep the space clean and sanitised and you just have to think a lot about it. Some of our employees have more vulnerability in their families and aren’t as lucky as us to be as healthy, so I think we really need to take care of everybody and look after each other. To check individually how everyone’s doing and see how each person can be helped to thrive in the world of Corona. I think there could be more working from home but maybe there won’t, I don’t know. It’s very much about seeing a couple of weeks in front of us at a time, you cannot plan anything concrete right now.”

It’s funny how important the little things become when everything else is uncertain. It may seem inconsequential or trivial to mourn the loss of hugging your colleagues as you arrive at the office but if this year has made us appreciate anything it’s our relationships with those around us.

“It’s made people aware of how much person to person contact is worth. I think of the world we’re living in now and how much things have changed, people thought mobile phones and ipads and computers were great, everyone went on and on about how great it was to be able to work from home but now it’s more about wanting to get the person to person relationships back. I think people want to actually see people again. I think we’ve shifted from believing coronavirus was going to be over in three months, to realising it’s going to be around for the next few years, perhaps forever, it’s changing so many things. We’ve only just started seeing changes, I don’t know how it’s going to be from now on.”

These changes are going to affect each and every person in the world, generations are going to experience life in a completely different way to those that have lived before them. Things that feel alien to us today, keeping distance from each other, wearing masks and sanitising every surface in sight, these will eventually become so ingrained into life for the younger generations, those lucky enough to be able to think of times gone by without experiencing a bittersweet sense of nostalgia. Is this necessarily a bad thing? Who knows. Maybe we will learn to appreciate our connections with each other more, maybe we will have a newfound sense of appreciation for the little things in life and the moments we once took for granted. Life, relationships, work and business will potentially never be the same again. The only way forwards is to grow and evolve our workplaces to reflect this. The way we run our businesses and the cultures we foster within our companies have never been so important. 

To read more about Webamp and the work they do relating to SEO and all things web related, on the website here. To connect with Nicolai Vittrup, find him on LinkedIn. To read more about leadership, find the blog here

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Good leaders know that leadership means standing in front of your team, not above it

GOOD LEADERS KNOW THAT LEADERSHIP MEANS STANDING IN FRONT OF YOUR TEAM, NOT ABOVE IT

Author: Gabriella Anesio


Ida Støier, Director of Sales and Partnerships at Pleo, provided her insights on the necessity of cultivating a company culture predicated on the ability to be vulnerable, learning, and strong cross-departmental ties. In her opinion, crossing the finish line with the rest of your team will always bring more satisfaction than on your lonesome. 

Pleo, founded in 2015, is currently innovating the way companies approach their expenses the development of one company credit card means employers can enjoy an array of features that simplify company accounting, including being able to set expense budgets for employees and managing company spending with more ease than has ever been possible. Ida Støier has been a part of it all for over three years, and has seen her responsibilities, skills, and teams grow ever since she started. 

Leaders with a high EQ are coaches, not bosses

When speaking to Ida about her favourite things with regard to being a leader, it became apparent that the term “boss” was absent from her workplace terminology. 

“When they call me boss, it feels completely unnatural and I don’t like it! I see myself more as someone who just stands in front, as opposed to above, my team. This means if we have to defend something, or if we haven’t performed well enough, I’ll be the one defending them and taking the sh*t.”

Evidently, replacing the term “boss” with “coach” is the first step in becoming a leader with a higher EQ. With a team mentality, there is no room for hierarchy or rankings. In fact, being in charge of the hiring process is something empowering for Ida, as she always strives to hire someone who fills knowledge gaps, isn’t afraid to challenge certain perspectives, and can actually teach the rest of the team something.

“I need to be able to say “I can learn something from that person”. In fact, my goal is always to hire someone who is smarter than me, essentially.”

This kind of leadership approach where you don’t only admit that there exists others out there that are smarter than you, but that you also actively seek them out requires a leader to be pragmatic, secure in themselves, and highly motivated. This is a sign of a leader who has the company’s success as their priority, with no inhibitions about bringing someone new into the team who might actually possess more knowledge in certain areas than they do themselves. 

For Ida, the most rewarding part of being a leader is coaching those around her to find their best methods of accomplishing their goals. Important to remember is that how to accomplish these goals varies from person to person and this is a belief cherished and respected by everyone at Pleo. 

“How I get from A to B will probably be different from how others in the team do it. That’s important for managers and leaders to remember: people are unique, we are all different, and if you just assume that your employees will react, do, and think the same as you, you have already failed.”

This all links back to the Pleo mentality, premised on acknowledging the fact that achievements are always an accumulation of the work done by everyone in the team, not solely because of the efforts put in by the one leader. 

Being vulnerable is just as important as being motivated 

When asking Ida what she thinks the best indicator is for a successful team, her response challenged the obvious answers (happy faces, high growth, and motivated people). 

“Being able to have a vulnerable culture where people can come to you and say when they’re not motivated, when they’re not excited, when things are not going their way – this is a really strong indicator of a thriving team. If they feel comfortable talking to me about that, they also know it’s because I would not use it against them, but because they believe I can be there to support them – and that’s a great team.”

This perspective is a refreshing one, grounded in a sense of realism, whereby it is accepted that not every day is a 100% kind of day. As a leader it is clearly important to be able to foster an environment wherein the people you work with feel comfortable enough to tell you when things aren’t going as planned this links back to the rewarding nature of coaching. As Ida believes, if one person is struggling to find the answer to a puzzle, her job is to help them find their best way(s) of solving it; and if she doesn’t have the solution, then there’s everyone else in the team to help support you through it. 

The bigger the company, the more bridges built

Strong connections within department teams isn’t the only thing promoted at Pleo. Often forgotten is the fact that the noun ‘team’ doesn’t just have to refer to a single group of people within a single department at least that’s not the way everyone at Pleo approaches it. There, the drive is to ensure all departments, and people within them, stay connected as the company gets bigger and bigger. 

Starting at a time when the company was just comprised of 20 employees, Ida now has over 200 colleagues and the company doesn’t intend on stopping the number there. That’s why it’s of essence to build strong and collaborative bridges between all positions, departments, and people. This seemingly complex task has been whittled down into a simple, yet effective, tradition at Pleo: bi-weekly, virtual coffee dates. 

“Every second week we get paired up to do an online coffee date with someone random within the company. This means that someone from sales can connect with someone from products or marketing, or business development – people you wouldn’t naturally engage with otherwise. We do this because we really believe in fostering a team culture within the whole company, and gaining that empathy and understanding for other people and their work flows – this will just help enhance collaboration.”

This approach to company culture ensures that everyone is a part of the same team at the end of the day. Not only that, but by encouraging cross-departmental talks, each department strengthens because they gain new perspectives and insights that they might otherwise have overlooked. 

A massive thanks to Ida Støier for her insights as Director of Sales and Partnerships at Pleo. To find out more about Pleo’s work, find them on LinkedIn or their website

To read more on the topic of leadership and company culture, carry on reading at Nicolai Vittrup’s blog, or reach out on the contact form on this website! If you still have a desire to learn more, you can find everything about PPC, SEO, and web-related content at Webamp – and connect with Nicolai Vittrup himself on LinkedIn

 

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