Debra Wolf, Brand Director at DiMassimo Goldstein
In 2013 I joined the DiMassimo Goldstein team. Prior to coming onboard I had only worked at “large” ad agencies; companies who had at least 500 employees and 10 account members to one client. While I always wanted to escape the feeling of being just another cog in the machine, I was nervous about making a change so far along in my career. Then I met Lee Goldstein.
My resume of many years in client services made its way onto Lee’s desk and in less than I week I was heading up 3 amazing accounts at DiMassimo Goldstein. I guess you could say it was love at first sight.
Mark and Lee foster a culture where everyone is expected to make an impact on our client’s business – no matter title or department. You walk through the agency at any given time and feel the creative buzz, see the camaraderie between departments and hear passionate conversations on how to best solve a business issue.
It’s been almost a year since my start date and not a day has gone by where I didn’t feel accomplished. I’m proud to call all of my “co-workers” friends and am beyond grateful for finding my home.
Erica Grau, Graphic Designer at DiMassimo Goldstein
I moved to New York 4 years ago when I thought I just wanted to check it out for a year. I fell in love with the constant energy, inspiring people, and worldly culture. I knew by moving from my home, Marietta, Georgia, I would be a step closer to my dream. My dream is to impact people through my creativity. I want to use my own energy to inspire others to be the best versions of themselves so they can in turn spread their own passion. I think if everyone feels free to be their unique and awesome selves, the world only becomes more beautiful and authentic. (more…)
Tom Millington, Copywriter, DiMassimo Goldstein
This is my first job in the world of advertising. I had taken Mark’s class, done some freelance work, and completed some necessary reading so I could be deemed competent with a certain amount of confidence. More or less though, I was hired on faith. Faith that what had been seen from me during my time in class and as a freelancer was not an outlier, but indicative of greater, underlying potential. Since the day I started, I’ve felt a constant assault of anxiety and self-doubt as I try to reward that faith. I’ve experienced the never-ending rollercoaster, as I’m sure most creatives have, as I’ve gone from feeling like an utterly worthless piece of crap to being roughly 99 percent sure that I am actually the second coming of Christ, only to plummet back down again. It’s exhausting and thoroughly, unapologetically addicting. (more…)
By Tyler Maxson, Art Director at DiMassimo Goldstein
My life at DIGO began in the class Mark taught for the School of Visual Arts. After a while, I really started to hit it off with Mark and was able to work my way into an internship, which eventually turned into a full time position. Before I knew it, I was working on my first big project, a campaign for New York Health and Racquet club promoting their 40th anniversary celebration. For the first time in my life, my work was for something other than a grade. There was an actual, living, breathing, and most importantly, paying client anxiously awaiting the completion of my work. It was nothing short of mind-blowing. However, this was only the beginning. (more…)
THE DIGO STANDARD; How we succeed together
Below is the DIGO Standard in its entirety —
01.) Who We Are:
While we can be considered a thriving independent strategy/research/brand/design/innovation/advertising/direct/digital/social marketing agency, we prefer this handle: brand-driven growth network. We make things grow, from product innovation to every facet of promotion.
We’re Here to Make Things Grow:
Movements. Ideas. Products. Brands. Companies.
If we can’t get excited about growing them, we shouldn’t be working on them. The work we do has a purpose and fits into a larger whole. By maintaining that perspective, we make success more difficult. But in facing the extra difficulty, we earn our integrity, self-respect and market value.
We Exist to Inspire:
Our clients, consumers, one another, the world around us.
Clients need to feel our passion and enthusiasm for ideas that can build their business. We didn’t sign up for boring cubicles and never-ending meetings. Let’s make the time our clients spend with us meaningful, fun and inspiring.
Why Do We Say Client Fulfillment?:
Because clients who are really fulfilled-fulfilled as people, professionals, and clients too- will become lifelong clients and in turn, recommend us. That’s how we grow. Great Clients, Great Work, and Great People.
We Are a For-Profit Company:
We provide value to clients and should charge a fair price. And should not be shy or subtle about it.
It’s what comes from investing in people and relationships, valuing them above short-term gain. Make your clients, your partners, your people feel that true partnership is possible. Invest beyond all calculation in people who inspire you. Be an honorable and generous partner at all times.
We Are One:
We are one firm: We have many different brand names on our business cards. We may work in different departments. But we are all responsible for the success of our clients, either directly or indirectly. There is no success apart from common success.
Each of us is Responsible for Our Own Inspiration:
Don’t settle for less. Find, ask, challenge, orchestrate, search, revisit…do what it takes to get inspired to do your best.
We Are Smarter Together Than We Are Alone:
Bands are more successful when everyone knows their part. Let your bandmates play their part.
02.) Listening is More Important Than Talking:
We’re all smart (or else we wouldn’t be here) and it’s not a contest. Speak up when it’s right and listen well and actively.
Remember That People Come Here to Do and Be more:
Don’t put yourself or anyone in a box. Expect creativity from “account people.” Expect strategic smarts from “creative people.” Expect management smarts from everyone. Collaborate with everyone you can. We play roles but if we wanted to be limited by them, we would be someplace else.
The First Rule of a Judgment Business:
We have an obligation to share our point of view, regardless of its popularity, both internally and externally. But once a decision is made, we are equally obligated to support it.
Clients Are People:
If you can get them to feel that you know that, the rest of your job gets easier. Treat them like part of the team, rather than a boss or an obstacle. Tell them what you really think. Joke and confide and take the risk of feeling comfortable around them. Challenge them to inspire you. Challenge yourself to inspire them. Be big enough to celebrate when they have a big idea.
If You’re Here, You’re Smart:
Don’t hold back. There are no bad ideas or dumb questions. Only the ideas you held back and the questions you should have asked but didn’t.
If Things Go Wrong, Speak Up:
If you need help, ask for it. It’s far better to raise an alarm before disaster strikes than after. Together we can solve almost any problem. Communicate early and often.
03.) It’s the Work:
While not every project presents an opportunity for greatness, everyone is an opportunity to practice your craft. In the long run, those who work more, who try it more ways, who do something good and then do something better, who crank, will accumulate many years’ more practice more than their less prolific colleagues. This confers upon them an unmatchable advantage.
Like + Trust = Business:
People hire people they like and trust. It really is as simple and profound as that.
Especially at the beginning of relationships, while you are earning the trust and admiration that will smooth the inevitable bumps down the road. While figuring everything out, and layering the groundwork for success. Get on more planes. Provide more options. Ask more questions. See the factory, meet the workers, go to the research, talk to the sales force, get a demonstration, sample the product, talk to a board member, brainstorm with the client. Over-communicate. Over-collaborate. Over-deliver. Time and energy invested in relationships pay us back in better work, business and results. Oh, yeah, and better relationships too.
Great Work Wins Business. Great Relationships Keep Business:
We proactively work on relationship building. What are you doing this week to build and strengthen a client relationship?
This is a Relationship Business:
We’re small enough that we can manage personal relationships. So, honor personal relationships. Treat your commitments as sacred. Communicate. Never leave your colleagues in the lurch. Be the colleague you wish for.
A problem, project or opportunity well defined is half solved. More time is wasted not thinking well at the beginning of projects than can ever be made up by speed, efficiency or piling on staff later.
In Running Meetings:
Start on time, end on time. Have an agenda and stick to it (unless there’s a good reason not to). Agree to next steps and follow up.
Take the Word Brief Seriously:
Let’s not ever make each other guess which part of the brief is the important part. Let’s include the important part. Let’s make sure our briefs are simple, compelling and crystal clear. Nothing in an agency is more sacred.
Make the creative teams and our clients partners in the brief.
Design In Context:
The context is the user’s or the audience’s experience. Design in context. Present in context. Evaluate in context. The first rule of design. And remember that everything that we do is design.
Agree on Strategy, Budget, and Schedule:
Simple, yes. Always followed, no. Let’s remember the basics.
Promise Wisely and Then Over-Deliver:
Make no commitment without consultation. Give clients something they didn’t ask for. Sometimes, deliver ahead of the deadline. End a meeting early and give colleagues, vendors or clients the gift of time.
Great Presentations Tell a Story:
One thought per slide. Tell a complete story, with insights and ideas.
When Presenting Big Ideas, Don’t Sell Executions:
Countless ideas get killed because the client sees execution too early. We sell big ideas first. Then the execution. We like simple descriptions and key visual to buy a big idea. Nothing more.
Creative Work is the Product. Get Behind It. And Be Ready to Defend it When Necessary:
Choice is good. We almost always have three options to choose from. And never one we can’t get behind.
Client Presentations Are as Important as New Business Presentations:
No understudies on presentation day. Casting is important.
04.) We Are All Responsible For Holding One Another to This Standard:
When our colleagues succeed, we all succeed–so help one another exceed the standard. If a colleague is not living up to this standard, we all have an obligation not to let it pass. If you have an issue with a colleague, deal with it directly, privately and professionally before you escalate. If that is unsatisfactory, get help. Professional expertise is a given around here; modeling is the true path to success.
The highest compliment an experienced musician gives to another act is to say that they are “tight.” Tight means you can go far and wide together, shifting tempos at lightning speed and responding to surprises, but somehow you are never out of step. You’re a unit, first and always. That’s a great band. That’s the way DIGO is. That’s the way our clients are too. And that’s the way we work together. It’s great to be part of something that’s great to be part of. I think it shows on our faces.