I've been lucky enough to have been hired by Six & Flow, the inbound marketing agency that values creativity and play. I'd also be lying if I said I wasn't drawn to the job by the onsite arcade machine and beer fridge.
Picture the scene. You wake up every single day at 7.30am, wipe the sleep from your eyes, chug down a coffee and cram yourself onto a tram so packed that you end up with your face in an armpit for half an hour. But what's waiting at the end of that journey for you? For most people it's just work.
Perhaps I came to Six & Flow for the beer fridge and arcade machine, but what's going to keep me here is the curiosity and desire to learn that the rest of the team possesses. In my first week, I've already observed how passionate the team are about what they do, and I can see that this isn't just a paycheck to any of them.
It's refreshing to be around people who actively want to improve their skillset, and Six & Flow is a springboard encouraging each team member to develop in their own specialist area. It seems as though this place is well and truly the sum of its parts.
I've been hired under the role of Visual Designer, which is admittedly a broad title, but one that I'm proud to have. It allows me to design for web, print, video, illustration, animation, branding, code and basically any other visual area you can think of. I'd hate to be pinned down to just one.
I've glimpsed plenty of new tools and ways of working this week, and I've already gotten some training (and passed my first certification) in HubSpot, which is integral to the workflow here.
What's been interesting during this first week has been seeing how creativity and play can fit into a process-led inbound marketing agency. I've spent most of my time so far figuring out how these processes work and what exactly they do.
One of the biggest challenges in design is balancing creativity with productivity. When you have a lot of projects on the go, your creative ideas are often the first thing to suffer, and it's easy to slip into producing work just because it needs to be done. Having a solid process in place is key to coming up with great solutions that answer the brief while also providing the client with what they ultimately want - whether that's more leads, bigger sales or better brand recognition.
Six & Flow uses HubSpot as a central tool to make these processes run smoothly for each client, allowing a more organised space within which ideas and creativity can blossom. It doesn't seem like there's too many nasty surprises that come up here, as communication between the team and clients is a big part of what makes things tick.
The biggest and most apparent change for me is the switch to an inbound marketing agency. It's great to be able to focus on letting the work do the talking. Every sales and client call I've overheard has been positive. It's inbound, clients are coming to us for help. Six & Flow aren't pushing services on companies that don't need them. They're actively trying to solve problems, not just sell, sell, sell.
So far, coming to Six & Flow has been one of the best decisions I've made, so I'll continue to get on that packed tram and have my head too close to a perspiring armpit every morning. Did I mention we have an arcade machine?