Be passionate and brilliant, be like Mona

When Mona Berg first stepped into Okimo Clinic, she felt like she was finally at home. And no, we are not just talking about Mona appreciating the style of our office space. Rather, she had found the people that made her feel like she belonged. So what exactly was this professional homecoming all about?

A workplace, where it is ok not to be perfect

Mona is a very optimistic and positive person. She is loved and appreciated by her colleagues. But that is also her attitude towards her fellow Okimonians. She believes that everyone is great — even if you sometimes need to dig a little bit. Everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses. This is very well understood in life in general, but somehow this is still an unusual perspective in business.

Unfortunately, it is still rather uncommon to find a workplace where it is okay to not be perfect. “Latent possibilities are not always discovered by companies and the potential of people can be overlooked. The most successful organizations recognize that weaknesses can be balanced with other strengths found within teams. They make an effort to discover and unleash these hidden capabilities. But this can only work in an environment where people know their own strengths and weaknesses as well as those of their colleagues. This requires a company with remarkable transparency that shows genuine interest and effort in getting to know the true passion and capabilities of all employees”, says Mona.

Notice potential and grow a superstar

And Mona immediately found Okimo Clinic to be transparent — all hours, goals, skills, sales and so forth are openly shared. Furthermore, she saw people are trusted and appreciated that the potential of all Okimonians is always noticed and built upon.

Finding this unique culture was very exciting for Mona. And she soon came to find many concrete examples of its effectiveness: “I remember a time we interviewed one particular person to work at Okimo. Within the first few minutes of the interview we discovered she was not the perfect fit for the job she had applied for. But we also noted she had some strengths that were very clear. We felt she had the attitude and potential to grow with us. And in our potential-focused environment she became a star in her first month. Her personality bloomed — and so did Okimo, as she managed to fill a critical role in our company. Simply put, we had previously lacked her skills and abilities. This type of potential would have been missed by many people for sure, and its full blossoming required the right place to allow its growth. It truly opened my eyes to the benefits of Okimo’s environment.”

The passion for communications

Passion is something you need to have if you want to succeed in life, Mona was also fortunate to find her passion in work. At Okimo Clinic, people are broadly passionate about communications, and the point of view just changes a bit from person to person: some are focused on video, some are razor-sharp strategists, while others tell stories or deliver data-based insights. Our passion for communications is the glue that ties us together along with our common values, like ambition, curiosity, trustworthiness and proactivity.

Mona has a passion for communications concepts, particularly at the intersection between brands, communications and visual design. At the same time, she sees that more and more companies need help with their processes and data, especially with how data can be used in a smarter way by professionals to develop impactful communications and efficient internal processes.

What is Mona’s strength?

Mona has some key strengths — like being Okimo’s client whisperer. That is the title she was awarded by her Okimonian peers at the most recent summer party. Everyone felt that she is uniquely talented at working with clients. But what does that mean? It’s actually quite simple. Mona is likeable, and she gets the necessary work done with excellence.

So we of course want to share her tips for being brilliant at work. Here is what you need to do to be like Mona.

What is the secret to her success (and what can you learn from her)?

Being an excellent project manager is the foundation. Mona thinks that being effective and always on time are the core elements of good project management. And as a communications consultant you need to excel at project management in general. If you do not, then you need to have some other impressive talents — and also remember to have someone else help with the required project management, like Helene does.

Then, the secret sauce is always the team. Mona says that all the people at Okimo are brilliant superheroes in some particular domain. Every day she is amazed by the skills of people around her.

But her own personal magic ingredient is what happens outside the office. The balance Mona has found in life gives her an extra edge. Fitbit activity trackers can help with balance, but it generally takes more — like running outdoors, yoga, hot ballet, Lapland’s natural beauty and the greens and flowers growing on her balcony. All these elements relieve Mona’s stress, so she can focus on her daily problem solving. You need to have other parts of your life in balance to be as effective as Mona professionally. Each day, she brings her balanced life to her work, where it sparks her passion to solve problems big and small.

And she has one last tip for everyone: Keep being curious. Open your ears and eyes and always grasp the potential of a situation. That works best in an environment that is built on possibilities, where people are encouraged to work with a sense of wonder.

Mona admits that she doesn’t have a master plan for her life — but she thinks it is not necessary when you have an environment that allows you to be free. And this key insight transcends her personal life and work — Mona claims it is important for customers also. In the modern world, you need to be able to change direction fast. Today, it is the agile companies that succeed. And optimistic, balanced professionals like Mona can best provide the agility necessary for success in business.

This article was previously published in MC Engage’s (formerly Okimo Clinic) blog.