The biggest difference with the values set in EOS® is that they really become the guideline for the company. Many companies talk about being values-driven, they talk about how in this or that organization, values are more than just words on the wall.

The difference in an EOS® organization is that your performance reviews and your potential compensation are determined by how well you live and follow the company values.

When we decided on our values, the hardest thing was distinguishing between what we feel are table stakes versus what really matters. To that effect, we have opted to keep away from values around customer service or creativity. We’ve instead decided that being good at those two things should be a given when you work in a creative agency – so much so that we don’t need to articulate a value around them. I still struggle with whether or not this is the right decision. But for now, what we’ve instead decided on are:

Humble Confidence

At Sköna, we don’t want big egos that walk all over the rest of the team. We also don’t want pushovers who don’t have the ability to voice their opinions. What we want are confident people – but people who possess humility enough to listen to others and maybe even change their opinions once in a while. This not only governs our internal behaviors but also how we engage with our clients. We believe it’s our job to voice our opinions and to carry respectful conversations. However, at the end of the day, the client has to be the one making the final decision.

Dogged Curiosity

We want people who are curious about the world around them. We want people who are eager to learn more about their client’s businesses and how they make money. That means we look for people who want to continue to develop and grow their knowledge and their careers. We want to work with colleagues who don’t think of their jobs as a squarely defined box but who think of what other things need to be done and how else they can contribute. And of course, as marketeers, it’s our job to keep our finger on the pulse of what’s going on in pop culture and in society. We have to understand the trends to not just keep up – but to stay ahead.

Creative Problem Solvers

Advertising and marketing are constantly evolving and changing, not only as a practice.

Deadlines change, designers get sick, specs are wrongly measured. Things get shipped to the wrong destination. Clients change their minds. People get let go. People get hired. In our business, you need a plan B AND a plan C. So we look for people who know how to think on their feet and solve those problems as and when they occur. 

Fun to Work With

Perhaps a pretty obvious value – most companies do not want to hire people who aren’t fun to work with. But this is at the core of who we are. One of the things we often have to remind ourselves of is that “It’s only advertising – nobody is bleeding out on the table in here.” What we do is serious, we help companies solve business problems with design. But we don’t have to take ourselves too seriously in getting there.

We also realize we’re lucky to get to work with a bunch of like-minded creative people and in such an atmosphere, there are always interesting and fun things happening. Many of our clients spend their days looking at excel spreadsheets and justifying budget spends to their bosses. It is therefore paramount that we provide the most fun hour they have at work that week. Period!

Team Sköna First

Working in an industry where we often have to wear our hearts on our sleeves, it’s important to take care of one another first. Meaning, designers have the hard job of creating something that other people get to criticize. It’s a pretty tough job and you have to develop some thick skin to not take the feedback that sometimes comes personally. Likewise, client service people are often a buffer between client demands and creative team realities. It’s also a pretty vulnerable position. Regardless, we realize that every job at an agency is pretty hard and can leave you feeling naked. That’s why it’s extra important to have one another’s back. To support and lift up. To not let one person stay late on their own. To not finger point when things go wrong, but to look for solutions. That’s what Team Sköna First is all about.

“Working in an industry where we often have to wear our hearts on our sleeves, it’s important to take care of one another first.”

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