Fed up with egos and in the advertising world, Robbie Greatrex decided to start with a clean slate and
1 No compromise
We live in a world of shortcuts and excuses where excellence has become a rarity, and good has become good enough. Well, sorry. We refuse to play along. At Mere Mortals we never ever compromise the quality of the work we produce.We challenge the mediocre, stand against doing the bare minimum and despise the feeling of ‘could have done better’. We have a burning desire to build our reputation on the quality of the work we produce, and take enormous pride in a job well done. We question everything, delight in the detail, and stay curious - scouring the globe for inspiration to ensure our work remains fresh and relevant. We strip back process and throw egos aside to ensure we spend as much of the working day as humanly possible making the work better. So be creative. Be persistent. And never, ever compromise.
There it is - the first Article of The Mortal Code. But how will we ensure we live by it? Well, one of the biggest things we can ensure is in place from the off is that our process and ways of working are designed to free up as much time as humanly possible to make the work better. And that's exactly what we've done by doing away with timesheets, simplifying documentation and creating a flat, open structure. So, now there really are no excuses when it comes to the quality of our work.
2. Drop the attitude
Unfortunately, some people can be rude, arrogant and disrespectful.
They can be unpleasant to be around and a nightmare to work with.
Not on our watch. At Mere Mortals we treat each other with total respect and expect no less in return. We detest inflated egos, can’t stand bullies and find petulance intolerable.We treat everyone equally and with the utmost respect. This is non-negotiable.We lend support, question intelligently and challenge respectfully.
We’re inclusive, fair and positive, extending this attitude to all we encounter: our clients, collaborators, guests, peers and competitors. So drop the attitude. Be respectful. And stay humble.
We're making this Article public, along with the rest of the Mortal Code, so that everyone who's involved with Mere Mortals knows the standards of behaviour we expect. And we understand that instilling respect throughout the organisation starts from the top down, with the leadership team. So this is where it begins. And it will allow us to crack on with the work. As a collaborative, motivated & happy team.
Which is what we're here to do.
3. Don’t conform
We’re sick and tired of our industry’s obsession with conforming to the same trendy, identikit culture. We break this mould. At Mere Mortals we demand everyone just be themselves. Our culture isn’t some pre-fabricated image for people to conform to. Quite the opposite. Our culture is nothing more, and nothing less, than the grand total of each individual’s background, characteristics, qualities, experience, accomplishments, interests, quirks, the list goes on…We embrace differences, encourage individuality and believe a team of diverse, unique and spirited people will create more original, interesting and culturally relevant work. So be yourself. Be individual. Don't fit our culture. Enhance it.
We have many ideas of how to ensure this Article is not left in a dusty drawer, but instead becomes the driving force behind an inclusive, vibrant culture. This begins with ensuring a fair and equal recruitment process, includes mixing up teams on projects and extends to how we celebrate success and socialise. We can't wait to see how our culture develops. And we can't wait to see which interesting individuals join our journey.
4. Step up to the plate
Many organisations find themselves plagued by complex hierarchies, rigid rules and stifling procedures. Not here. At Mere Mortals we revel in autonomy and crave responsibility. We’re bored with micro management, inflated teams and multiple sign-offs. We’re too impatient to be stuck in training mode, and too ambitious to wonder ‘what ifs’. We champion smart, ambitious and spirited individuals who take risks and give things a go. We relish the challenge, trust our gut and make decisions swiftly and decisively. We place an enormous amount of trust in people - trust to crack on with their jobs and trust they’ll seek help and advice when needed. So step up. Be bold. And get shit done.
Having a flat, open structure will be the basis of ensuring we live by this article.
We'll show our trust through simplified policies for such things as getting taxis, buying a client lunch or working from home, which will be little more than 'Use Good Judgment'. On top of this we're doing away with annual appraisals - you know, the sort that take forever to organise, feel like a nervous stand-off, and are far from designed around helping individuals fly. Instead we'll have regular catch ups that are centred around growing skills and autonomy. Because we believe that if we put trust in people we'll get the best out of them.
That they'll step up to the plate.
5. See the Bigger Picture
Like it or not, profit driven businesses play a huge role in the world around us,
whilst people’s happiness and the impact on our planet are often relegated to nice-to-haves.
Screw that thinking. At Mere Mortals we care about our impact on people and the planet. We believe businesses have a responsibility to stand up and be counted, to care about the bigger picture and to aspire to be a force for good. We lead by example and strive to inspire others. We take happiness seriously and switch off after a hard day’s work. We volunteer, fundraise and play our role in the local community. We get stuck into the bigger issues affecting our planet with the hope of leaving a legacy that extends further and deeper than simply the work we create.
We've made a flying start on ensuring we live by this Article.
We've become part of the B Corp movement - a community of leaders driving a global movement of people using business as a force for good, changed our legal documentation to instruct those running the business to make decisions based not just on profit, but to also consider the effects on people and planet.With these foundations in place we're now rolling out other initiatives, such as giving everyone one week per year paid leave to volunteer. These will ensure that Mere Mortals and everyone involved has a positive impact, that we don't just say we want to be good, we're obligated to.