What is Jung von Matt? Who is Jung von Matt? Why are we the way we are and why is that good?
Before our founders decided if Jung von Matt was an idea worth making a reality of, they separately answered 40 questions about what they wanted and didn’t want the company to be. The deal was that if they didn't see a quick agreement, they would stop just there. But they did. Since they had common values and views of the company's culture, they saw a stable foundation worth investing in. So, Jung von Matt was founded. And also the first step in our corporate culture.
But a corporate culture can’t be defined only by answering 40 questions. It has to evolve, grow and be refreshed to stay relevant over time. So since then, our culture has been developed organically by everyone at Jung von Matt. You'll see it in the atmosphere that pervades the way we work, the beliefs, values and behaviors that determine how we think, act and interact – from how we serve clients, treat colleagues, and uphold professional standards.
But values are not useful unless they are enshrined internally in the daily operations at the agency. We know that we’ve been a little lazy (shame on us…) to really expressly define our values out loud. So for two days this September, we visited our headquarters in Hamburg to dig deeper into this.
Many corporate vales out there are just plastic and non-useful. Take “excellence”, “togetherness” and “passion” for example. Every company has to prove that they are excellent. And, of course, we all have to work together with passion. But it’s not an interesting value or position for a company – because every company would agree on that. It’s not differentiating and has no clear focus. Therefore, we call those values plastic values. And plastic values doesn’t make us unique.
Jung von Matt's seven guiding principles:
The Jung von Matt culture isn’t buzzwords on a page. It is a deep-rooted way of working, developed organically over many years. You feel it in the air. You see it in the way we work, how we behave, how we interact and think. We love to hunt out likeminded partners with whom we can share this way of seeing the world.
1. We love (emotionally relevant) ideas.
An idea can be anything – providing it solves a business problem, changes the way people do things and is different to what’s been thought of before. That’s why ideas make us happy, no matter where they comes from.
Good ideas make something better: faster, cheaper, smarter, easier, more powerful, perhaps. But great ideas are things our target audience actually want. (That may sound obvious, yet all too often, it isn’t.) To prevent mistakes, our creative ideas must pass a test. For an idea to work it needs to be emotionally relevant. What ingredient engages the target audience, revealing the benefit this will bring to their lives? If it’s not emotionally relevant, it’s not a great idea. And we go back to the drawing board until we find it.
At Jung von Matt it’s ok to make mistakes. That’s how we learn and discover new, better ways. Yet mistakes can cost money, time and trust. So it’s equally important not to make them – and never by relying on assumptions.
2. We believe in the power of communication.
Communication is a strong arm. Creativity is its muscle. Together, they prise open doors which brute force cannot enter. We believe this so vehemently we made it our logo: the Trojan horse. A constant reminder to ourselves of the sheer power of an unexpected, simple and wildly engaging idea.
3. We fight for quality.
Clients deserve our highest quality thinking and best efforts. Always. That’s what you pay us for. We promote best performances and fight fearlessly for the best solutions. We would rather lose an account by provocative rebelliousness than by nonchalance or carelessness.
Prestige is no motivational match to quality.
4. We are more critical of ourselves than of others.
If we’ve made mistakes, let ourselves down or missed the target, we talk about it openly and candidly. But you will not hear us breathe a bad word about our colleagues, clients and competitors. Should we lose a pitch, there’s no one to blame but ourselves. We can handle criticism and actively grow from it.
5. We communicate at eye level.
We are all in this thing together. Clients, ourselves, suppliers, consumers – we are all on the same side. We treat everyone with equal respect and importance.
6. We act and consult independently.
Independence itself is not valuable. What it means to our clients and way of working, however, is. We have no passive partners. No network kickbacks. No in-house pressure. No pre-defined channels. Profits do not guide our recommendations and we are convinced this makes for both better work and relationships.
7. We remain (healthily) dissatisfied.
When an agency allows itself to settle, its expectations and standards slip. We scrutinise our methods, our ideas, our teams and constantly ask ‘What can we do better?’ We believe this fuels perfection.
As we continue to evolve Jung von Matt, it’s important for us to identify partners whose values are compatible with our corporate culture. No company can build a strong, differentiated culture without people who either share the core values or possess the willingness and ability to embrace those values and integrate into the culture. When recruiting, we want to find employees who are not just the most talented ones, but also the best suited for our corporate culture.
What do you think about our values? Which of them is your favorite? Please tell us in the comments below or send us an email :)