What makes Somo a great place to work?

12 May 2021

Somo has been recognised as the NUMBER ONE place to work for in Campaign’s newest ranking! To celebrate our win, we wanted to share some of the best parts of being Team Somo – and what better way to do that than asking right at the source!

So, below, we’re chatting to Sam Penfold - Studio Coordinator, Mariame (Maz) Ben-Karoum - Digital Designer, and Tim Johnson - SVP of Product to find out what’s their favourite thing about working at Somo, how our culture differs from other businesses they worked at, and why it’s the best place to work for.

somo stories sam maz tim

1. First things first – tell us a bit more about your role!

Sam: I'm the London-based Studio Coordinator and I manage and organise our people resources, engagements and coordinate other aspects of the business. I work closely with 90% of people in the company on a daily basis. From the moment I received the golden call, to when I first logged on, and within just hours of starting, I realised Somo truly was the best place to work for! Fuelled by its passion for success, it creates an international workplace made up of its diverse people: Somo-ers.

Maz: Ello, I'm Maz. I've been here for around 2 years now, and I live with the creatives over in the experience design team. My role as a Digital Designer means I blend everything you see visually into something lovely - this could be anything from user interface and brand identity to a more illustrative work. 

Tim: I’ve been at Somo since 2012, and I’m now SVP Product. Right from the beginning, I’ve found Somo energising and inspiring. There’s a real sense of community that welcomes you and cares for you, but also constantly challenges you and gives you new experiences. Somo is always evolving and growing, and as an individual you learn and grow with it. It’s hard to believe I could be in a company for as long as 9 years and still find it continually new and interesting.  

2. What makes Somo different to other places you worked at? 

Tim: We work with a real passion for excellence but that excellence is drawn from and driven by the people themselves. From all their individual contributions in all their diversity. It’s a very open culture that builds energy and excitement from the mix of skills, styles and backgrounds across the team and how they combine to do brilliant work on projects. 

Sam: Somo pushes you to challenge, develop and teach yourself everyday in whatever you do. The people culture allows you to be yourself and express who you are as a person while sharing experiences, differences and similarities. As an Australian who moved to London in the pandemic, I feel like part of an international family at Somo, and I've been so lucky to make so many friends from different backgrounds and experiences. Best of all, my manager (who is also Australian) makes me feel valued, welcome and part of something amazing every day.

Maz:  I’m given a lot of space to explore ideas and push creative boundaries – along with the freedom to get work done in a manner that suits me best. What makes it different? Ohh I would say it's just the flexibility, and how dynamic Somo is in terms of its approach to having a good work-life balance. It's nice to see that the working life is not just about work, it’s about people and connecting with colleagues all over the world.

3. What’s your favourite thing about Somo?

Maz: Our people! :)

Tim: What I most love is how we encourage people’s honesty and authenticity, and really try to let people shine in their own way.  

Sam: My favourite thing about Somo is the challenging and diverse nature of the work. Everyday I log on full of excitement about what awaits me and who I'm going to interact with today! I love that someone is always there to help should you so wish. We are progressive. We are ambitious. We are visionary, empathetic and cosmopolitan. But most importantly we are special. Each one of us has contributed to an award-winning business in our own special way.

4. How would you describe Somo in 1 word?

Sam: Describing Somo in one word? Visionary

Maz: Forward-thinking

Tim: Community