Working in an agency means working for people. Therefore, it is essential to adapt to your audience’s needs.

Serious Business, a Munich-based agency, knows this challenge all too well. Working at the intersection of business and design, they use Strategy, Branding, Digital Design & Communication insight to reach their audiences. We are happy to share some of their helpful advice on how to adapt to your environment and stay curious.


> How to keep moving forward

Running a company in the digital age can be tricky. Some say that what used to happen in 25 years, now happens in a 5-year time frame. Things are changing and developing faster than ever before. Everything from culture, communication, technology, language, and… values.

We run a company that helps other companies stay up to date in the digital age. That means we have to be out there looking for clues. Hunting for better ways of working. Talking to people like innovators, users, and scientists. All of which, that knows something we don’t know…yet.

Here are few points our team collected on how to stay up to date… as a company, human, or even a robot.

No matter your age – always listen to people younger than yourself. Respect their opinions. Learn from them, see where they are going. After all, they will take over the development of the world. You should be “upgrading your mindset software” every week – at least. Taking time to ask the younger generations questions is a quick way to get out of your comfort zone.

Go to events that inspire. Informing yourself and expanding your network. As an agency, we get our team tickets to different types of conferences and festivals. The benefits of attending an event that moves your brain forward are endless. Getting an idea of what is possible now that wasn’t 5 years ago. Thinking – how could this new thing fit or be useful to someone else, or even used in a different way.

I always feel that when the team comes back from an event like that it fuels our efforts and expands our horizon. Besides influencing collaborations it inspires individuals to develop their own skillset.

Tips before going
– Bring a notebook, pen and a tote bag
– Bring a power bank
– Have business cards on hand (In whatever shape or format)
– Drop your ego and talk to people. It’s important to split the group if you’re with your team
– Never come back unchanged (Note down how the event influenced you and share it with your team)

Stories. Everybody is creating stories through their actions, even without knowing it. By purchasing a product we as consumers use the story of a brand to advance our own personal identity.

If you own a company or want to start one in the future we only have one recommendation. Whatever you do with your company put the story of your brand, your purpose, your belief at the center of it. Get everybody in the organization involved in some way. Keeping in mind that a story that’s relevant today isn’t necessarily relevant tomorrow. So, reconstructing your story is important. But even more important is that your company actions align with your brand story. This is what we call branding by doing.

Do sprints. Running a company used to be like running a marathon. Things took time, and with time your heritage got heavier. Nowadays running a company you also need the ability to sprint in between – you have to be fast, light and agile – or else you’re out. Everything is about getting an idea and prototyping it fast. Putting your perfectionism aside and throwing it out there to see the reactions.
Based on the reactions you either iterate to improve it or toss it in the bin to start again.

So many people now know how to lead some sort of a design sprint. Hosting a good sprint with your team 4 times per year is a great way to develop the team spirit. It maintains innovative thinking and a solution-oriented mindset. Giving the feeling that anything can happen and nothing is forever. You are constantly learning and developing as an individual and as a company.


Article by Helga Ósk Hlynsdóttir


Serious Business will be sharing more insight at Forward Festival Munich. Get your tickets now!