Culture of Creativity
From where we are and how we work to who we admire and what inspires us, everything at Grey reflects a culture of creativity. When we come to work, we don’t just come to work, we come to play - to play with exciting ideas that change behaviour, challenge the status quo and, most importantly, make people feel something. We’re here to help your brand change the world, one ad at a time.
OPEN CULTURE We have pioneered a different culture and way of working at Grey. We call it OPEN. Open means smart, fast, agile and versatile solutions. We reject the old notion that ideas have to be bottlenecked through a 'godlike' single creative director. Open means no physical departmental structures, allowing multi-discipline teams to cluster around the task in hand rather than rigidly sticking within their department boundaries. Most importantly, open results in more original ideas with social currency that deliver real success on our clients' bottom line.
- LONG IDEAS Most agencies talk about Big Ideas. We believe in Long Ideas. Big Ideas come and go. By comparison, Long Ideas start earlier and live longer. Long Ideas travel further across media, companies, people and culture. They are ideas that are entertaining, interesting or useful enough to be shared. They are ideas, which involve people, give people something to talk about or do and the means to do it.
PEOPLE AT THE HEART An ad agency is so much more than bricks and mortar. It’s a variety of colourful characters. From avant-garde creatives to detail-loving number crunchers. But they’re all good people. After all, we take our time to pick them. We pride ourselves on culture. We were chosen by Grey Worldwide, first and foremost, for our people. We’re brimming with talent but ego-free - you could say we take our work seriously but we don’t take ourselves seriously. Grey Africa is a well-oiled machine but you’d hardly call us slick. It’s very important that we nurture and maintain a healthy environment for our creatives – a place where they feel confident to express their opinions. We give everybody an opportunity to speak and criticism comes from a constructive place to help the agency grow, learn and improve.
- AWARDS Doing great work for its own sake is what drives us. But it sure feels good to be recognised. To this end, we believe in entering our best work into the most popular award competitions. We also migrate south to Cape Town every spring for the Loeries awards. It gives us a chance to see the best creative work our country has to offer and be inspired by our peers.
PLAY ROOM To remind ourselves we’re not a bank, we have a brainstorm room full of colourful plastic balls. When we’re throwing ideas around, it helps to throw balls around too. After all, creativity is about play. We also have a toy robot. It’s not the Googleplex but we’re getting there.
- FIVE-GRAND FRIDAYS Once a month, each department is given a cool R5 000 to spend on a Friday afternoon get-together for the whole agency. We let our hair down (even the baldies) and enjoy a good ol’ time of beer pong, karaoke, pole dancing, sumo wrestling or a pub quiz.
WALL OF SAME Ever worn the same outfit as a colleague? Awkward, right? Especially in an industry that prides itself on originality. So when some fellow workers dress like twins, we relish the opportunity to embarrass them forever and induct them to the Wall of Same. Ag shem.
- GOOD TIMES Easter, spring, Halloween, Christmas - whatever we celebrate, we do it well. It’s a good time for team building, bonding and rejuvenating our creative spirits. After all, we are a second family.
FRIDAY BREAKFAST What do you get if you mix the favourite day of the week with the most important meal of the day? That’s right. Friday breakfast. At the end of the week, a different member of the creative studio organises a breakfast of champions for the gang. Friday breakfast is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re going to get. It could be anything from pancakes to chicken rolls to fruit salad, but whatever it is, it makes for a great start to the end of the week.
- TABLE TENNIS We compete as hard “on the court” as we do for new business. After a long meeting or a stressful day, it’s good to take a break and hit a ball. It gets the blood flowing and replenishes our creative juices. We even challenge our production partners next door. And win. Convincingly.