Our word is all we have

One of my friends sometimes jokingly calls me “smalltalk-Make”, since…well…you can guess why…

I was born and raised in Finland. The land of “limited” words. In Finnish language there’s actually not even a word for smalltalk. Most of the older generation and I have been raised with the saying: “puhuminen hopeaa, vaikeneminen kultaa”. (Translated into: Speaking is silver, being quiet gold!)

So being silent for me doesn’t mean I’m rude or that I don’t care – it actually means quite the opposite. I do care! I care so much that I only want to say things that I mean and can stand for.

We work in the industry where sometimes shit hits the fan. I mean the creatives, the craftsmen, the producers, the artisans are all human. They get sick, they sometimes make mistakes. They also work with machines that can break or malfunction. 

Obviously most of us does what we can to avoid it. I mean who would benefit from a mistake – it’s always a lose-lose situation. Or at least it should be. So to avoid those situations, there are standards, quality systems and back up’s in place. Even so, sometimes Murphy’s law takes over…

Everybody can be positive, confident and beneficial when things are going great. But it’s the moments of adversity that truly determine your character.

I’m blessed to have people around me and in the company who genuinely care. Everybody always says they care, but truly caring is different – it’s not just words. 

It’s heartbreaking to see how a mistake or even misunderstanding, that passes all of the precautions and quality checks, affect and do to them. I’ve seen people losing sleep, feeling nausea, crying… 

Some outsiders have tried and comfort: “it’s just work” 

But when you love what you do, you don’t want to compromise or find excuses. Because you’re so proud of what you do it’s never just work!

So at the same time, I’ve seen immense strength in people. No matter how they feel, they still don’t get paralysed by the situation or take the easy way out – “it’s just work”. On the contrary. I see them doing everything they can to keep their promises – to keep their word!

I don’t have the permission to tell other people’s stories – I’d love them to do that! So thats a coming challenge for my team… 😉

But I’ll just share this one example that made me personally fly to Spain with my girlfriend and our 3,5 month-old-daughter with big packages of exhibition stuff for N1CE:

What do you do when a shipment suddenly doesn’t show up on time? Take the easy way out? Tell the client it isn’t your fault? 

H E L L N O. 

Not where we work. We get on a plane and deliver the product ourselves, even if it means fighting a nasty hangover and flying 3000 kilometres to Spain. 

When an order needed to be delivered ASAP during a weekend, Marko took a snap second decision and proved that not only do we keep our promises against all odds, but we also know how and when to turn a bad situation into a successful one.”

In the end it was a great trip, but more or less everyone would like those situations not to happen, or at least be rare exceptions. So how do we then in real life support people (our customers and our employees) so that they can keep the most valuable possession they have – their word? 

The great part in our service is that we are the concierges – we are the service and the platform to make inspiration actionable! 

We work with an ecosystem of amazing talent both on the creative and on the craftsmen side. The benefit of that is that we don’t have to sell our own stuff to people. (stuff that so often might not be the best alternative..) 

We actually can and want to provide brands and people with alternatives. Alternatives about locations, materials, production methods.

And at the same time, on the rare occasions, when something goes wrong, we are not dependent on one person, one machine, or one producer. 

We’ve got our whole ecosystem of talent all around the world to fix any potential problem – so that we can keep our promises – without the customer ever needing to know about it. 

Our mission is to help save time, nerves and lower the stress levels of the people we work with.

We want to make inspiration actionable! 

We are human and our word is all we have!