Going from some digital agency experiences to an organized company is always a critical change, in a working career.
In case you missed my welcome post, go read it. Preview: I switched from agencies to company.
About my agency background, I have always worked in beautiful places, surrounded by very young & talented people, in a casual and informal spirit. Most digital agencies have a mood that remembers a post-hippie digitalized era.
Most digital agencies embrace a post-hippie spirit.
You can go to work with shorts and t-shirts, you can wear you beloved Birkenstock, you have flexible working hours and remote work is something usually accepted.
This mood is not coincidence: the more you feel relaxed like being at home, the more you feel your work like your home.
This point of view scared me. But that awareness was not easy to achieve and not easy to discover.
Come on, these benefits are positive. But sometimes they are what in Italy we call "specchietto per le allodole". In other words, these benefits could hide a different reality: over-stressed atmosphere, careerism, already expired deadlines, too much time spent at work.
So, from a point of view seems that working in a digital agency is a mess.
The other side: a positive perspective
An agency life is not easy to run if you need time for your family, or have a lot of interests to manage, outside your work. But, 8 working hours there can teach you lot of things. Every client is a new adventure, sometimes projects are very different, and need different approaches and skills.
If you are at the beginnig of you career and need to learn, go with the agency. Guaranted.
Agencies are often more organized. This happens because they have flexible structures and decisions are made very fast. They experiment a lot of management models and cath the innovations very easily.
The majority of project management models I've learned so far, come from the agency experiences. Agencies also teached me how to manage stress and complexity.
The way things happen in agencies, often is like that:
Something we could call learning by doing.
Starting a career trying to learn the (un)possibile makes sense. And this can be easily done starting from the agency. Companies need figures able to work a lot, work fast and in a organized way. The best place to look for them are the agencies. Imagine this: learn things and skills, fill up your bag; then go where your bag can make the different.
My thought about the future: companies will adopt always more paradigms from the agency model, to be more productive, more flexible and more innovative.
So, start making the different (and wear Birkenstock in the company).