Biž&Bob: Team that confirms that complete feedback and an open exchange of opinions are a winning combination

A year ago, the Bruketa&Žinić&Grey agency started developing an innovative employee development management process called Biž&Bob. In the meantime, employees highlighted this very process as the best change that happened in the past year, and the project won this year's selection of the best regional HR practices, which is organized as part of the HR Days conference.

Innovative, different and always original... These are just some of the epithets that have been associated with their work for almost three decades.
Ever since they stepped onto the scene, they have been recognized for their creative ideas and an approach that avoids boredom in any form. Their focus has always been on creating unique and impactful campaigns that touch audiences on a deep emotional level, with a strong emphasis on storytelling and evoking feelings of nostalgia, humor and humanity.
If you've even stepped into the world of market communications, you've probably guessed how the opening sentences are 'spent' to describe the market communications agency Bruketa&Žinić&Grey.

Therefore, bearing in mind who we are dealing with, it was clear that their latest successful HR practice 'Biž&Bob', which they presented at this year's HR Days conference, would be just that - unique.
This was also recognized by the audience of the conference, whose votes, combined with those of the expert jury, crowned 'Biž&Bob' with the title of the best regional HR practice.
But what is the secret?

We spoke with Mojra Dautović, the agency's human resources manager, who revealed to us the background to the creation of Biž&Bob.

How did these unusual names find their way to the world of HR practice? How was the whole project conceived and what makes Biž&Bob so unique in the field of human resources?

The project was related to the creation of an employee development management process, the main elements of which are development interviews, complete feedback and development plans for employees. Bruketa&Žinić&Grey is an agency for which creative ideas are the main "product" that serves brands and organizations to solve concrete challenges on the market. As such a creative agency, which is based on an inclusive culture, where all ideas are welcome, we knew that the way we would get to the final process had to be in line with that culture. That's why we decided to include employees in the process design itself, who could give their suggestions on how certain segments of the process could look. For example, the employees were the ones who, with the facilitation of HR, selected the key competencies for individual jobs, on which the part of the process related to feedback was based. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all BŽG people for their engagement.

As for Biž and Bob, Biž is the informal name for our agency and we are already recognized by that abbreviation throughout the industry, while Bob is our internal platform through which a good part of this process was carried out.

Some established attitude is that work in agencies is incredibly dynamic, imbued with opportunities to learn and try new things, and that 'no day is the same'. On the other hand, the rhythm is very hectic, which is why a large number of people do not stay in one place for long. One of the basic tasks of Biž & Boba was to reduce employee turnover. Did you succeed in your plan?

In fact, the main goal of the Biž&Bob process is employee development. This is just one of the factors that affects their satisfaction, thereby reducing their churn. We succeeded in this main goal because an internal questionnaire showed that the employees highlighted this very process as the best change that happened in the past year. However, this does not mean that everything is "rosy" now, we have more work to do.

You designed the whole story and put it 'on its feet' in cooperation with the employees - what did the process of asking for and giving feedback look like and what did your employees emphasize?

Feedback was only one part of the process where employees gave suggestions on really different segments, such as the way we will provide answers in the feedback questionnaires, the course of certain activities, the formulation of the description of competencies and many other elements of the process. Some guiding thoughts in this have always been simplicity and relevance.

Last year, you formed the company's HR department for the first time... What was the first year like and does it bring any special challenges, but also pleasures and sources of inspiration, working in the agency world?

My personal challenge was definitely the change of industry, considering that I came from a large corporate system of the FMCG industry to the creative industry and first had to familiarize myself with the market, agency work and challenges. What inspired me was the fact that I have the opportunity to set up new processes, and the analysis of business needs in the field of HR, which was already waiting for me, helped me a lot. Of course, I am always inspired by my colleagues and management who are really open to HR even though it was something quite new to them and even though they had no experience with it before.

What are the next steps you will focus on in 2024?

We are now trying to get the most out of this process that we have implemented in the domain of individual development plans. We are aware that the work is not finished with the implementation of the process itself, but that it needs to be improved, maintained and ensure regular monitoring of its outcomes at the individual level. In addition, we are focused on adapting the way we work to improve efficiency and balance between work and private life, and we are actively exploring all the options offered by AI platforms. In any case, we still have room for development and a plan to get to where we want to be.

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