So You Want to Be a Member of Our BAND?

When you’ve worked at big agencies, small agencies and everything in between, you come to value how a small firm like ours can maintain its culture and values.

For the first four or five years at Glantz Design, the group was so small that values and behaviors were truly just learned by osmosis from Keith. But as we grew, bringing in fresh talent and adding leaders, we felt it was important to define exactly what makes us special—what is sacred to our internal workings and unique to our client offering. It boils down to these five core values that we lovingly (and appropriately, given our love for music) refer to as our BANDS.  

Be a team player

Yep, this sounds a little cliche, but you’d be surprised how prevalent “divas” can be in our industry. At a small agency, you get to wear a lot of hats. You get pushed out of your comfort zone. You get challenged to produce beyond your years of experience. And yes, you’ll need to pitch in for the smaller tasks that might even include emptying the dishwasher. If your natural inclination isn’t to dive in and help in anyway you can, or if you think “taking one for the team” sounds like it might permanently bruise your ego, you won’t be donning our sweet Glantz uniform.

Act with kindness, and also honesty

There’s a big difference between being direct and being a jerk. We don’t hire jerks. Clients pay us for straightforward, honest appraisals of ideas. It’s our job to be a good partner to clients and that requires both kindness and honesty. Internally we expect the same for teammates. We work closely together all week—owing each other respect, empathy, and honest feedback that promotes professional growth.

Nimble in nature, but don’t cut corners

Big agencies are heavy, slow, hierarchical and expensive. This model is outdated and does not provide value for clients. We are like a team of ninjas, who move quickly through problem-assessment and ideation to produce calculated solutions. Moving too fast can create chaos or errors, something clients don’t pay for. If you are an eager-beaver in your first month with us, you will likely get swept up in the exhilarating pace of our work and we will undoubtedly tell you to slow down. Don’t worry, you’ll soon find your footing and fall in line with our stride.

Do the right thing for the client and the problem at hand

If there’s one thing that separates us from other design shops, it’s that design actually comes second. Sounds strange, doesn’t it? We solve the problem strategically first and then design to that end. We don’t design for design’s sake, we design solutions. There are even times when design isn’t the answer and doing the right thing means advising the client accordingly. Being a good partner is always the priority.

Shun complacency; don’t become a dinosaur

Because we operate in a world of constantly evolving technology and ideas, we cannot and will not stand still or rest on our laurels. We actively seek out those with a growth mindset, the renaissance people, the polymaths. In annual reviews, we encourage individualized training and mastery of new skills. So if you think a job in the suburb of Evanston will be cushy and not too challenging, think again. To be a part of this clan, you must be industrious and always curious.

We articulated these core values to coincide with our 10 year anniversary last year. And as we continue to grow, we use these as criteria for hiring, evaluating and even letting people go. Taking it a step further, we often gauge potential client engagements by asking ourselves if our core values will be a match. Certainly there are ways to accomplish our mission of “doing great work that works for clients” that don’t adhere to these. But truth be told, we’d rather not act that way. Our culture and way of being is just too precious to us. So if you are admiring us from afar and wondering if Glantz Design might be the place for you, ask yourself if you’d like to live up to these five values every day. You might be a rockstar, but to be a member of our BAND(S), you need to be in tune with all five of these values.

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