Carrot Creative – a VICE company, is a full-service creative digital agency that ideates, designs and builds campaigns for some of the most innovative brands.
Carrot Creative roots everything it does on a motto of “Hustle, Team and Adventure”. Nina Choi, Manager of People & Culture, describes how Carrot’s company culture has helped attract talent to support campaigns and become a competitive advantage in the agency market.
Not Your Average Hiring Process
Carrot's hiring process is distinctive in that they don't only want to know what a candidate can do or what's written on a resume, they also want to get to know the candidate as a person. Having the skills are obviously important, but without a culture fit, a person wouldn't be happy utilizing those skills, no matter how talented. So, Carrot focuses on knowing what drives candidates, what inspires them, and most importantly, what 3 things they would bring if they got stuck on an island.
“Besides R2D2, we don’t like robots here at Carrot Creative. We want to know what makes you human. Our application asks you to be a little bit creative, to stop and think, and hopefully to get you a little out of your comfort zone--we want to see parts of your personality that a resume often can’t catch. These items are key for creative agencies to identify,” Nina says.
Carrot Creative has been able execute on their approach by leveraging Greenhouse to manage its interview process. According to Nina “Without the organization of Greenhouse as well as the carefully-crafted interview flows that are customized per department, we wouldn't be able to really focus on the candidate throughout the hiring process”.
Collaborative & Sharing Environment
While Carrot Creative does many things to create and maintain its culture, one of its strongest assets is its Committees. Carrot Creative promotes a collaborative and sharing environment - Committees are the perfect example of that. They allow Carrot Creative to maintain the culture that they want to keep, but they also encourage people to bring what they are passionate about into the workplace and to share knowledge.
Finding like-minded people, who enjoy doing things that you love as well, makes coming to work feel like coming to see your friends. Some of Carrot’s popular committees include its Brew Crew, which ensures kegs are full and that coffee is fully stocked, its BBBBBQ Committee (Bros and Babes Be Barbecuin’), that puts together year-round BBQ events and Crafty Carrots, that is dedicated to making your wildest Pinterest dreams come true.
Creating a “Second Family”
Carrot Creative realized early that your “work family” truly is your “second family”. Mike Germano and Chris Petescia, the founders of Carrot Creative, have been friends since high school. When the company started to expand, it expanded by bringing on more friends and so on.
A large part of maintaining that environment is to continue to find the right members for your team to help push not only your company’s work, but also your company’s culture forward.
The result, you create a vast network of employee referrals. People who work at Carrot want to invite their talented and skilled friends to come along for the adventure (who wouldn’t want to get to work with their best friends?). Warm referrals are how Carrot has found some of their best and most successful talent.
Through these techniques, Carrot has earned a spot Crain’s NY Best Places to work in 2014. It has also created a competitive advantage that helps them to attract and retain talent as well as generates high quality referrals.