Collaboration and clarity – a training programme inspired NTRNZ media to learn a new way of working together
NTRNZ media is a creative company specializing in marketing and content production. They are best known for their TV series Untold Arctic Wars and Love of the Wild, and with good reason - both series have been nominated for and won several Golden Venla Awards in recent years. The fast-growing and successful company gained clarity in its internal processes through a Greenstep Academy training programme.
NTRNZ media is an innovative company based in Oulu that operates in two main areas: as an advertising agency and as a production company. The company's projects range from more traditional marketing tasks, such as creating corporate identities, to producing TV series and formats. The company celebrates its 20th anniversary next year, but its biggest growth spurt to date has come recently. Over the past few years, the size of its projects and the number of its staff have increased significantly, creating a need to adapt its internal processes, leadership, and communications.
"We needed to grow up as a company. As the team and productions grew, it became clear that this old model was no longer working. We needed to unify the way we do things and have a common vision of what we do here", says Hanna Mustonen, CEO of NTRNZ media. "We have such a wide range of services and expertise that we needed to find the common thread. When you have been doing this for years, you are in too deep to see how things should be changed. It was great to have an external professional to help", she adds.
As the team grew, management needed to grow as well
To meet the new challenges of growth, Greenstep Academy created a training programme for NTRNZ media to clarify the company's processes and management practices. The management of the multidisciplinary and creative company had previously been very individual, with different projects following their own processes.
"We realized that we had individuals with a long history in the house, but they were working in their own bubbles in a way. We didn't have a coherent model of how to lead. It's really confusing for the team when one person manages projects one way, the second person another way, and the third person a third way", says Mustonen.
During the training sessions led by Heli Häyrynen, the different project managers identified good practices and ways to improve their own leadership. As a result, they found a common way of working and communicating.
Joint staff workshops solved project management problems
For the low-hierarchical NTRNZ media, it was important that the training didn't just involve management, but that all staff were involved in the development process and that everyone's voice was heard. "I thought it was great when Heli told us that this isn't just management's job, but everyone's. It gave many people the realization that this isn't something that's done for us, but that it's part of everyone's work", says Hanna Isola, a copywriter who took part in the training programme.
That's why Heli organized three joint workshops in which the entire staff took part in the discussions. Since the company's operations are usually divided into very specific projects, it was important to mix the project teams during the training. "We have experienced project managers and people who don't necessarily speak up in front of the whole team, but who have a lot of knowledge and skills", explains Isola.
As a result of the workshops, all the processes were reviewed with people who don't normally work together, and it soon became clear that the different approaches had a lot in common.
"We realized that there were a lot of unifying factors in the processes that we ended up putting together and polishing. The result was a process model that runs through all our operations. We realized that there is no need to do things in four different ways when you have one working model that adapts to different needs," says Mustonen, describing the results of the training sessions.
Training prepared the company for internationalization and growth
The new clarity in management practices and processes has already been of great benefit to NTRNZ media. The training has provided a framework and clarity for the whole operation, which will help the company's future plans. "We are going international and the productions we work on in the future will be even bigger, so we need to have a solid base to meet new demands", says Mustonen.
NTRNZ media has been more than satisfied with the training provided by Greenstep Academy. "The timeframe was realistic, we were able to do everything that was planned and stayed on schedule. If we needed to adjust or tweak anything, it was done", says Mustonen. "I think it says a lot that all employees participated each time, the enthusiasm didn't fade. This shows that the training was necessary and exactly what we wanted", she concludes.