14th November 2018
Berlin in 2 years… So what does Berlin have to offer newcomers?
2 years ago, nearly to the day in fact, I embarked on a new adventure and chapter in my life.
I packed my bags, jumped on a plane and moved from London to Berlin to work in the technology world – all thanks to the kind people of RedSofa Berlin J
Moving to a new country, a new company and different industry can be quite daunting for some with lots of “the unknown” to encounter.
However, when you take yourself out of your comfort zone, find a place to settle and fill in all the paper work needed here, the rewards WILL be incredible.
I’ve always been a countryside man at heart but loves city life, so for me a balance and mix of both is incredibly important. Berlin certainly offers this, and much much more.
There is a lot more to Berlin than tech start-ups and techno. Here are a few of my favourite places so far that I visited early on and still love now.
From bars and restaurants to sunset spots, lakes and hiking through forests, exploring abandoned buildings and of course the Christmas markets…
I would love to hear of your own explorations but here are some of my favourite spots so far.
2nd November 2018
Humans have developed a novel relationship with “happy hormones” in recent years, this century in particular. Many people being totally out of sync with their bodies’ chemistry, causing imbalances that leads to anxiety, restlessness, and ultimately severe depression in some cases. Naturally, if you are in a stressful job that you don’t enjoy; these feelings are massively compounded and will almost certainly trigger an unpleasantly high level of cortisol release.
In some instances, these imbalances cannot be helped as they have not been triggered or enflamed by the individuals’ lifestyle. Many people will seek a quick fix rather than addressing the route cause of the discomfort they may be experiencing – after all, it’s the Western way.
Serotonin & Dopamine are naturally secreted neurotransmitters that our bodies release as a reward for undertaking activities that encourage the survival of the human race. Sounds like a pretty basic formula, I know; but exercise, sex, sleep & eating are the foundations, pillars even, of natural secretions of these hormones, which should be the first point of discussion and exploration before encouraging dependency on an artificial substitute, as this can totally inhibit future natural releasing, much to the joy of big Pharmaceutical companies.
Let’s explore a little further.
When people become “addicted” (and I use that phrase tongue-in-cheek) to food, exercise or sex; it is not the act itself that they are seeking, it is the feeling of accomplishment & happiness, that comes as a result of these neurotransmitters flooding the body during and afterwards. And this works both ways – if you’re receiving a reward for these acts, each time you execute them; it will provide feelings of motivation, accomplishment & control – you will undoubtedly feel able to get more done with your day and will be more engaged with your day to day life.
So; what’s the secret? Well; work on these basic cornerstones and understand the physiology of your body, before looking for a solution elsewhere. And also… find a job that you love, if you don’t have one already (if you’re a developer; I can help with that).
By: Rob Maguire
This is my first blog post and if anyone would like to discuss further, ask any questions, or like/share, please feel free! I will be writing monthly pieces about various topics going forward, including more on mindfulness, health & personal growth.
DISCLAIMER – ‘eating’ does mean eating nutritious and wholesome food, not just whatever you can find 🙂
23rd October 2018
Over here at RedSofa Berlin, we play our music loud and proud. Much to the dismay of our neighbouring companies ; )
It gets us pumped up to fill those urgent Friday freelance briefs, it helps us concentrate on those hard to fill permanent roles and currently gets us through the Berlin rainy October.
So here are the albums / mixes on current rotation this week at RedSofa towers.
Top 5 Albums / Mixes of the week:
If you have any new suggestions on what gets your productivity levels soaring. Let us know, we love new music.
23rd September 2018
Martina is originally from a small village in Bavaria, but took her first deep dive into Berlin’s nightlife in 1999. From Kunst und Technik to Ostgut, from Bad Kleinen to WMF – she was the one “in the know”. Always loving being surrounded by creative people and their work, she and her friends started the “Wochenbar” R12; a space not only known for their happy parties on Thursdays but also for giving young artists the chance to exhibit their work.
She has a great passion for culture, aesthetics, design and art but also organisation and management. So, on her more serious side of life, she studied Arts Management and Cultural Work and worked for 5 years in various areas of the cultural sector. But since the great attraction to everything in the field of design and the internet became stronger and stronger, she made her way from PM in the cultural sector to PM, concept and strategy in digital agencies.
What links all of this experience together over the years is the joy of bringing people together and making things possible. Martina loves to find the right lid for every pot. So she fits right in over here at RedSofa!
Out of work, nowadays, Martina likes to spend time with family and friends. OR watching / reading about true crime, doing some kind of sporting activity, giving cool travel tips for families (see her travel blog for some inspiration http://itsonmylist.de) or talking to her plants as if they were human.
27th February 2018
Rob stumbled upon the world of creative & digital recruitment after an illustrious client facing career in both sales & personal training. Having spent 3 years servicing the London digital project management market, he is now diving headfirst into the Berlin technology space establishing long-term relationships with clients & candidates alike. Outside of the office though, you can find him exploring Berlin’s weird and wonderful nightlife.
As well as being a heavy hitter in the recruitment world, Rob can be seen eating 15 chicken breasts a day in preparation for international weightlifting competitions where he has earnt TEAM GB status. Well……we don’t know much about professional powerlifting, but we sure are glad to have him in TEAM RedSofa as well.
15th January 2018
Any Senior Tech / Creative Recruiters out there who are sick of the UK/London recruitment market? Working at 10-15%, with below average in-house talent who you can’t build relationships with and use 20 other agencies, companies who don’t want to work with recruiters but have to, never getting feedback on CV’s/Interviews, sick of working against 20 other agencies for 1 job that’s probably gonna be filled in house anyway?
So…If you have Tech, UX, or Creative experience, and fancy Berlin where your clients are genuinely cool, want to work with you (at 20%), give you CV and interview feedback, do what they say they do, trust your judgement, working against a small competition, make quick decisions then give me a shout.
We’re also a lot of fun to work for… we have a Sonos sound system on the go all day, regular spontaneous lunch and beers, moving to the coolest part in Berlin soon, good commission, have a good laugh a each other, and most importantly won’t micro manage you AND we have a decent reputation in the market here. I’d love to hear from you. Pm or email me.
Ps I’m saving about £700 a month not living in London AND earning more and get to chill at places like this… sold?…
pps you hardly ever pay more than €3.80 a pint…
1st January 2018
Nightwork Music by Tosh Ohta
Tosh is marketing agency Amplify’s Head of of Client Development. He is responsible for on-boarding new clients and developing existing ones. Amplify is a marketing agency that joins the dots between people, brands and culture. They work with Google, PlayStation, Airbnb, Nike, Netflix and more across strategy, brand activation, influence and amplification. Previous to Amplify he racked up over 20 years working in the technology sector managing marketing campaigns for Cisco, Samsung, Microsoft and EE.
As well as being a b2b marketing and sales strategy expert, Tosh is a DJ, regularly playing festivals, clubs and brand events across the UK and Europe. This summer he has already played at Cannes Film Festival, Gottwood, Love International and next up is a set on the floating Pagoda at the final Secret Garden Party.
Young Wolf – Kabuki (Spiritual version)
Roy of the Ravers – Emotinium
Lusine – Cirrus
Scott Grooves – Detroit 808 (Panther Dub Delay version)
Lobe – Placebo
Lord of the Isles – Ultraviolet
Kinder Atom – Eagle Sprouts (Nuwavedisko mix)
Beyond the Wizard’s Sleeve – Diagram Girl (Beyond the Wizard’s Sleeve re-imagination)
Go on then, give us your elevator pitch….
Medium sized anglo-japanese person. Husband and cat owner. Clapton resident, currently learning to drive. Head of Client Development at marketing agency Amplify by day, shonky DJ by night.
So what is it about your job that turns you on?
I am particularly proud of Amplify’s creative output. Also our client roster.
What’s the best thing about working at Amplify?
Definitely the people. (I was going to answer that for the previous question but it might be taken the wrong way). As well as having the utmost professional respect for my colleagues they’re good friends.
Any particular thing you’re most proud of?
Work – Helped my previous agency Astute grow from 5 people to nearly 300 over 15 years.
Music – I played all three rooms of Fabric in one night.
If you weren’t in Client Development, what would you be?
I had just dropped out of college when I was 16, I walked through the high street looking for a job. WH Smith said no, McDonalds said no, then a telesales company said yes, that was my first “client development” job. So, I could have ended up at a stationers or a fast food chain in Walton on Thames if my hair cut wasn’t so daft (it was very stupid).
Why do you love RedSofa so much?
Dan Poole obviously.
Do you have a background in music?
Not particularly, I’m just a massive enthusiast.
Tell us about your early rave days?
I had a very stupid haircut.
Top 5 albums of all time?
This will probably be different next time you ask me..
Pixies – Surfer Rosa
Violent Femmes – Violent Femmes
Bauhaus – Crackle
Nitzer Ebb – This Total Age
Metro Area – Metro Area
Best show on Netflix?
Black Mirror, my music and TV tastes are similar – a bit dark and sounds like it’s from the near future
In 40 years, what music will people be nostalgic for?
There will be a massive dubstep re-edit scene and Skrillex will probably make a terrible come back (reference disco re-edits and Moroder’s come back)
If you like what you hear then get yourself over here for some more Tosh
You can find more RedSofa Radio Mixtapes here
15th December 2017
This will definitely put a smile on your face even if you’ve woken up on the wrong side of the bed this morning. A guy who was out on a bike ride with his two friends in South Africa managed to capture the moment an ostrich decided he wanted to get in on the fun with them and proceeded to chase after his two friends on their bikes, whilst the whole thing was caught on the guys GoPro and he later uploaded it to the internet where it was a viral hit.
6th December 2017
The worlds largest international social media conference will be taking place in Prague this year between the 11th and 14th of March. Last years conference saw more than 1,000 participants from over 70 counties attend, so this year is hoping to be even bigger and better.
The event, Engage Prague 2016 (http://www.engage2016.com/) is three days worth of networking and workshop – based learning about the constantly evolving industry with key-speakers including:
Veronica McGregor: The news and social-media manager for the NASA; she created NASA’s first Twitter account.
Alfie Deyes: An English YouTube star who currently runs the channels PointlessBlog, which has over 4.5 million subscribers, and also PointlessBlogVlogs, and PointlessBlogGames.
Olivier Robert-Murphy: The global head of new business at Universal Music Group.
In addition to the key speakers the event will hold two days of workshops on many industry-focused topics such as using instagram to expand a brand, the importance of visual storytelling and creating effective videos for social channels. The workshops will be led by major brands such as the BBC, L’Oréal, and Microsoft, as well as including social media stars such as photographer Eelco Roos, who has more than half a million Instagram followers. Anyone attending the conference can choose four sessions, which will be divided up into morning and afternoon sessions.
5th December 2017
Do you remember the days of having a printed portfolio of your work, lugging it around to showcase your designs?! Then it was all about the PDF and still is for some clients, although everything is venturing more towards being more digitalised, so now we have websites.
However word on the street is that WeTransfer are launching a new app, so you can share information on the move, in meets without the need of your laptop.
I for one think this should have been done sooner, being a recruiter speed is of the essence especially on freelance so gone are the days of relying on emails, as I find I do more over text and mobile now so having this app surely will make the process simpler.
Its definitely something I’ll be speaking to my clients about and suggesting we give it a try.
2nd December 2017
Halloween is officially done for another year and now is the time when most of us start thinking about the festive season for the first time. However, for those in the advertising industry, planning for Christmas can start all the way back in March!
Over the last few years, the John Lewis advert has become a much-anticipated event. Many people up and down the country see the debut of the John Lewis ad as a sign that the festive season is underway. This year’s ad is based on a ‘cuddly monster’ that has been compared to The Gruffalo. Traditionally the ad is launched onto our TV screens on the first Friday of November. Check out the link below to see it for yourself before it inevitably goes viral in the next few weeks.
17th November 2017
South Korea is well known by its locals for its annual monsoon season where it can rain solidly for 3 weeks straight. Now a group of designers have come up with a brilliantly inventive way to try and brighten the streets up and put a smile on the faces of the people who live there. Their project ‘Project Monsoon’ creates huge vibrant painting right on the streets which only will appear when its raining. It uses special hydrochramatic paint, which stays invisible until it gets wet.
16th November 2017
If you’re a foodie you’ll be familiar with that time everyone went crazy over an insane milkshake down under dubbed the ‘freakshakes’. The café in Austrialla selling them, Patissez (http://patissez.com.au/ ) went viral and people all over the world wanted to get their hand on one of their mega milkshakes.
Look at them!
Well now Londoners look no further because ‘Freak Shakes’ have been brought to our very own city. Molly Bakes Café (https://www.mollybakes.co.uk/our-cafe/ ) in Kingsland Road, Dalston has become the first place in the UK to start making these insane milkshakes. “We started making them because last year when I saw them on Instagram I wanted to get on a plane to Australia but didn’t fancy the 24-hour flight for a milkshake!” Maria from Molly Bakes says. The milkshakes are made using fresh ice cream and topped with sauces and brownies, cookies, tartlets, marshmallows, honeycomb and loads more. All are made by the team at Molly Bakes Café and come in four flavours, Chocolate, Peanut Butter, Raspberry and Caramel with more combinations apparently coming soon. We will definitely be making a trip there!
14th November 2017
These amazing wasp nests were a creation of a study from an Italian biology student. Mattia Menchetti cleverly realised he could give coloured construction pieces of paper to a colony of wasps and that by gradually providing different shades of colour, the wasps then turned their intricate homes into an amazing array of rainbow colours.
13th November 2017
Scott Kelly is an astronaut who is aboard the international space station and he recently has been releasing breath-taking images of the Australian landscape from 400km above on his twitter page. The images reveal a very different landscape from the Australia we all think we know. Check out more of Scotts picture from space on his twitter feed. (https://twitter.com/StationCDRKelly)
12th November 2017
There are always some ads that manage to do more than just sell the product, some achieve to be able to convey emotions for their audience, making the ad much more memorable in peoples minds. Extra Gum’s latest ad has done just that. The company have released their latest ad named “The story of Sarah and Juan” and takes us on a journey of the pairs relationship; from the first time they catch eyes and meet to the day he proposes. It’s all linked with the gum being present at important chapters in the couples life, and links into Juan’s’ proposal at the end.
9th November 2017
Sweden has become the first country in the world to launch its very own phone number. The more than unusual idea was thought up from the Swedish Tourism Authority and is a part of their campaign to celebrate the country’s 250 year anniversary of abolishing censorship. If you call the number you will be put through to a random Swedish person who you can then talk to quite literally about anything and everything. Apparently more than 11,000 calls have been made since the 6th of April when it was first set up. If you fancy giving a random Swedish person a call today then dial +46 771 793 336.
7th November 2017
Two guys latest project in Iceland has taken the Internet by storm. Jin Choi and Thomas Shine are both architects and had a unique idea to make normal everyday industrial structures more interesting and appealing. Their idea was for electric pylons to be built as human-shaped statues walking across the Icelandic countryside. In 2008 their “Land of Giants” project was proposed to the local authorities. The design has recently been accepted and now the statues have been assembled and put in place. And it’s safe to say they look extremely impressive!
5th November 2017
It’s safe to say we all love Sir David Attenborough and his iconic voiceovers for his much loved BBC documentaries. And when he recently joined Greg James on the BBC Radio 1 show he was kindly asked if he would narrate the opening part to Adele’s latest new music video for ‘Hello’. Of course the result was amazing and he gave the narration for it in the same style as one of his BBC documentaries. It makes for a brilliant watch!
3rd November 2017
Halloween is just around the corner, and it seems to get bigger and bigger every year. In the US, one quarter of all of the sweets sold annually is purchased for Halloween! But did you know that the history of Halloween actually dates back over 2000 years?
Halloween began as the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. A lot of the Halloween traditions we have today originated with Samhain, including lighting bonfires and wearing costumes. In a bid to ward off evil spirits, people would protect themselves by dressing up as ghosts.
From the eighth century onwards, 1 November became All Saints Day, where saints were celebrated. The Samhain traditions continued to be incorporated into these celebrations. All Hallows Eve, the day before All Saints Day, also became a special event. As the days got shorter and the nights got longer, it was important to commemorate the event and ward off death and demons. Children in particular got involved with dressing up and going out onto the streets.
29th October 2017
It’s been nearly two decades since I was tripping over my own kids’ Lego, but the little plastic bricks are still ubiquitous. Today’s children might seem to be smartphone obsessed, however, the popularity of Lego shows no sign of waning. In fact, in 2015 Lego was named the most powerful brand in the world, knocking none other than Ferrari off the top spot. So how has it managed to stay so popular?
Lego famously hails from humble beginnings in Denmark. Despite the fact that Lego is now an enormous company, it’s original motto ‘det bedstead ikke for godt’ (or ‘only the best is the best’), is still at the heart of the company. Parents know that Lego bricks are hard-wearing and therefore they are a better investment than cheaper imitators. Lego has managed to make its name synonymous with quality, and this goes a long way in explaining why it continues to be so popular.
Astonishingly, The University of Copenhagen discovered that a modest pack of six standard Lego bricks can be combined in 915,103,765 different ways. This incredible versatility allows a kid’s imagination to run wild, and parents love it too because it can keep them busy for several hours at a time!
The very first version of Lego was first released in 1947, so it’s now seen as a traditional toy. However, Lego is surprisingly in tune with the sensibilities of modern parents. Today’s parents tend to avoid heavily gendered toys, and Lego has always been ahead of the game on that front. Lego has markets itself towards both boys and girls equally. The bright primary colours and diverse characters are appealing to parents who want to avoid princess pink or toy guns.
The secret of Lego’s success seems to be that it is such a simple, almost quaint product, that also appeals to modern tastes and values. This winning combination shows no time of decreasing in popularity any time soon.
18th October 2017
The annual Great British Tattoo Festival (http://www.greatbritishtattooshow.com/) is being held at Alexandra Palace on the 28th and 29th of May this year and will attract many talented tattooists from all over the world. This will be the 5th year the festival will have been running and it’s set to be an amazing one with a vast gathering of creativity to be shown. Over 300 artists will be at the show along with live music, seminars where you can go along and try something new or improve on what you can already do and more. One of the artists Manda Ashby, who will be attending her 4th Great British Tattoo Festival, gave some insight as to why she returns every year This will be the 4th time I’ve been at the Great British Tattoo Show – it’s exciting! The tattooing talent and the venue make for a beautiful and pretty inspiring place. It gets busy but not over-crowded so you get to see everything, a really brilliant atmosphere.” Click here (http://www.greatbritishtattooshow.com/tickets) to get your tickets.
Pictures Via MadeInShoreditch http://madeinshoreditch.co.uk/2016/03/14/great-british-tattoo-festival-2016/
27th September 2017
The Top 100 Digital Agencies report is the definitive listing of the UK’s largest digital agencies. The guide features in-depth analysis and commentary on the state of the industry, along with information on each agency to help client-side professionals choose the right partner to help achieve their business goals.
26th September 2017
25th September 2017
How is it that major companies can spend millions on developing and launching new products and the results are enough to make even a five-year-old cry foul?
I don’t know the answer, what I do know is that the results can be hilarious. Here are some of my favourites, so bad they’re good.
COLGATE’S RANGE OF ‘KITCHEN ENTREEES’ READY MEALS
Someone here obviously thought the appealing combination of toothpaste and ready meals would be a culinary hit. It was NOT.
Colgate launched their range of ‘kitchen entrees’ in 1992. Not surprisingly buyers rejected the idea of tucking into that exciting looking dish of rice and veg while thinking of toothpaste. After five weeks the range was gone.
A spokesman at the time said (through gritted teeth) “ I think we might have stretched the brand a little far”. Something of an understatement.
HEINZ ‘SPECIAL’ GREEN TOMATO KETCHUP
Heinz Tomato Ketchup has to be red, what other colour could it possibly be?
How about green?
In 2000 Heinz launched their special green ketchup under the slogan ‘Heinz’s 420th variety. It seemed to turn consumers even greener than the ketchup,
After two months it went down the pan!
BIC DISPOSABLE PANTYHOSE
You can just hear the new product development meeting discussing this idea.
“So what should we develop to go alongside our best-selling pens and disposable razors?” “Err…underwear?” “YES!”
Bic decided to launch ‘disposable’ pantyhose to go alongside its other disposable lines.
Apart from production problems, you can’t make pantyhose in an injection mould like you can with cigarette lighters or razors.
Despite this, the product was finally launched, and, surprise, surprise, was quickly disposed of by consumers. Didn’t they realise underwear and pens don’t mix.
DASANI FROM COKE!
In February 2004 Coke launched their new bottled water brand Dasani.
It started with the marketing slogans “bottled spunk” and “can’t live without spunk” To the Americans spunk was meant to imply spirit, energy, pizazz….
To the British it meant something else!!
Worse was to come though, Dasani’s “pure” water was found to be no more than tap water, from Sidcup in Kent. Then even worse was to come when Trading Standards investigated whether was any purer than tap water, or in fact different at all.
It certainly was different. Bromate was discovered in the water, which is a suspected carcinogenic!! This was a truly spectacular failure of a product.
CLAIROL TOUCH OF YOGERT SHAMPOO
Proctor & Gamble launched this product in 1995.
No doubt Yogurt and other cultured dairy products may actually be beneficial for your hair. Customers, to put it mildly, did not take to associating dairy with a hair product. There were even some cases of people mistakenly eating it and getting sick as a result!
This hair-brained product soon flew off the shelves into the bin of history.
Harley-Davidson values are strong, masculine, very rugged values. So what could they add to the brand to reinforce these values? How about perfume? What, I hear you cry! Yes that’s what they did.
In 2001 they launched the ‘Legendary Harley-Davidson Eau De Toilette’ range. They didn’t make you smell like a Hells Angel and what Harley rider wants to smell like a girl on a motorbike. Not surprisingly the range crashed!
I hope these brought a smile to your face, there really is nothing like the sweet smell of failure!
15th September 2017
Social media has given many young people from normal, ordinary backgrounds the platform to join the rich and famous, and most of them from the comfort of their own home. We now live in an age where you can be ‘Twitter Famous’ and YouTube sensations can get as much of a following as some famous artists and actors. One girl who has seen it all is 18-year-old Australian, Essena O’Neill. She gained 800,000 followers on Instagram and even landed herself a modelling contract with one of Australia’s biggest agencies. She was paid money to advertise clothes on her Instagram page and she had what looked like the lifestyle every 18-year-old dreams off. But now she reveals that it wasn’t all it was cracked up to be and in a YouTube video she talks about how she is now shutting down all her social media accounts. In the video she explains how damaging it is for young people especially girls to feel the need for followers and likes from people who don’t even know them. O’Neill deleted over 2,000 photos from her instagram and then edited the captions on the few remaining photos she left up to spread the real truth behind the pictures.
“Without realising, I’ve spent the majority of my teenage life being addicted to social media, social approval, social status and my physical appearance,” Wrote O’Neill wrote on her latest Instagram post. “Social media, especially how I used it, isn’t real. It’s a system based on social approval, likes, validation in views, success in followers. It’s perfectly orchestrated, self-absorbed judgement.”
Picture Via BoredPanda
2nd September 2017
Enjoying Berlin since 1997 and having a background in marketing and communications, Jörn has been into e-commerce, retail, wholesale and publishing after being involved in an art gallery, a record distribution and, of course, Berlin’s club scene. He is a self starting creative mind with a passion for design, culture and technology. Ever since getting his hands on an 286 PC on which he hacked DOS games with a hex editor and taught himself basic programming back in the days he’s been nurturing his secret inner geek and eventually decided both by logic and heart to join RedSofa to help to deliver an outstanding recruiting service for tech and digital roles. Email him firstname.lastname@example.org
27th August 2017
Blue Island will be a cluster of hot desks based in the RedSofa Shoreditch offices. They will provide space, facilities and mentoring for fresh talent, in an atmosphere that’s creative and different.
“We wanted to give something back to an industry that has been very good to us. We’ve discovered and promoted some exceptional talent over the years so we see Blue Island as a practical extension of this. In other words it will give talent the leg up it deserves,” says Steve Buss RedSofas founder director.
The first occupants of Blue Island will be Tim Nelson and Donna McLean who are creating an exciting new community and storage business.