"We have to break up the old structures"

Grow" is the launch of an extraordinary mentoring program for the content marketing industry: Young talents support young talents. Werbewoche.ch spoke with two representatives.

Florine Geller (l.) und Corinne Brönnimann sind Teil des neuen Mentoringprogramms des CMF.
Florine Geller (l.) and Corinne Brönnimann (r.) are part of CMF's new mentoring program.

How can agencies promote and retain young talent in the content marketing industry? How can they effectively provide assistance so that young talents feel comfortable? The answer of the Industry association Content Marketing Forum (CMF) to these questions is called "Grow". The offer was conceived by "NextGen", the CMF committee for young talents in content marketing, which was launched at the beginning of the year. With "Grow", young talents help other young talents in the content marketing industry, it is intended to offer orientation and assistance to young professionals and to promote exchange and diversity in the industry.

Growing together and sharing ideas

In essence, the aim is to break down the distance and barriers between mentee and mentor and make it easier to build up a relationship of trust. In this way, young professionals can learn from people who have recently had experiences similar to their own. In the end, not only the mentee but also the mentors themselves should be able to benefit from this. The focus is on growing and developing together, exchanging ideas and learning from each other.

The mentoring process kicks off with a one-day event where all mentors and mentees can get to know each other, exchange ideas, and come together as mentoring teams. Earlier this year, CMF created NextGen. A new, innovative body of young representatives from various CMF member companies in Switzerland, Germany and Austria.

Werbewoche.ch spoke to two representatives about the new program: Corinne Brönnimann, Digital Marketing & Communications at Swisscontent in Zurich, and Florine Geller, Senior Digital Consultant at muehlhausmoers in Berlin.

Werbewoche.ch: When you think back to your agency's beginnings - what topics would you have liked to have had support with yourself?

Corinne Brönnimann: I would have liked to talk to someone on an equal footing so that I could classify and put my concerns and uncertainties into perspective. That creates orientation. This can provide security and confirmation or trigger the decisive courage to change. You have to take action yourself, but exchange inspires and motivates. The inhibition threshold to discuss such topics with a supervisor is significantly higher.

I would have liked to exchange ideas with someone at eye level

Florine Geller: Above all, I would have liked support in preparing for staff meetings and negotiations. There is still a big hierarchy gap, especially when it comes to salaries.

What can you now bring to the table yourselves as support for mentees who are not much younger than you?

Corinne Brönnimann: Professional experience is valuable and, from a professional point of view, you benefit from it as a newcomer. But what about all the personal questions and uncertainties? We have been dealing with these and similar considerations within the framework of the "NextGen". The "NextGen" is an independent body that exists alongside the CMF board and has set itself the goal of sustainably rejuvenating the agency landscape and promoting exchange between generations. In the course of this, "Grow" is our first initiative. It deliberately aims at exchange and support at eye level. So it's not about being super experienced to be able to mentor. Rather, it's about having a desire to exchange ideas, support each other, and learn together. We can talk about our own experiences and what we have recently been through ourselves. This creates a different, very valuable basis of trust. This is where we see real added value.

Retaining good young talent in the agencies is a major challenge - to what extent does the "Grow" program contribute to this?

Florine Geller: With NextGen and the mentoring program, we want to offer Young Talents a point of contact where they feel they are in good hands and to whom they can always turn. We give young talents a voice and make sure they are heard. Ideally, this will lead to a rethinking of the agency landscape and ultimately make young talent feel more comfortable in the industry.

We give young talents a voice

And what needs to happen in the content marketing industry to make it more attractive to good young talent?

Corinne Brönnimann: It needs to open up, listen to the next generation and adapt to their needs. There are many motivated young people. All they need is a chance to get started and try things out.

Florine Geller: Absolutely. We need to engage in an honest exchange between young and experienced staff and learn from each other. This also means that we have to break up the old structures and give young talents more opportunities for development - be it in higher positions, further development and training, appropriate salaries, etc.



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