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Work Culture: How Kochi-based indie agency Maitri takes care of employees

The Internet is loving Kochi-based Maitri's approach to work culture, work-life balance and more after its group creative head Francis Thomas spotlighted it on social media.

By  Storyboard18Jan 17, 2023 11:58 AM
Work Culture: How Kochi-based indie agency Maitri takes care of employees
Francis Thomas, who is the group creative head at Maitri, took to social media to talk about what it is like to live and work in a city like Kochi. Thomas also talks about how Maitri as an agency goes out of its way to take care of employees and keep them together like a family. (Representative Image: Clay Banks via Unsplash)

In 2016, Francis Thomas, a creative professional from Ogilvy who has worked on award-winning campaigns like ‘The Seatbelt Crew’ which was one of India’s most-watched videos of 2014, decided to pack his bags and move on Kochi. Thomas wanted to support his wife, who wanted to pursue her acting career. He joined Maitri, an independent creative network headquartered in Kochi. Thomas thought it was an arrangement for a year and would return to Mumbai, where all the advertising glamour and glory is. However, he stayed back in Kochi and at Maitri specifically.

Recently, Thomas took to Twitter to talk about what it is like to live and work in a city like Kochi. Thomas also talks about how Maitri as an agency goes out of its way to take care of employees and keep them together like a family.

Thomas highlights how the agency’s founders welcomed and helped with him with every little thing. Right from getting the internet connection set up, house hunting to even finding auto drivers when needed. Maitri’s management, leadership, and every employee made him feel at home. In his Twitter thread, he also mentions how they make everyone in the agency comfortable and appreciated. That apart the agency encourages the teams to explore other creative avenues. Two of their copywriters have published books, someone has worked on a film, and Thomas is working on a few features and shows.

Kochi-based Maitri, which was set up in 1997, has a foothold in Thiruvananthapuram, Kannur, Chennai, Bengaluru, and Coimbatore, along with international footprints in the Maldives and Seychelles.

The story of Maitri comes out at a time when there are several debates and discussions around how burnout rate is increasing in advertising and how young creative professionals are staying away from joining agencies because there aren't enough upsides and perks. This story of a homegrown network shifts the focus and gives many in the industry hope about the future.

What’s interesting is also the fact that creative culture is seeing new sparks in cities outside Mumbai and Delhi, where all the business and action are concentrated. It also reflects the bigger shift to more independent and remote work cultures, where forward-thinking companies and people are making active choices for better work-life balance and healthier living.

Coming soon. Watch out for Storyboard18's new series Agency On Map that will feature agencies and advertising culture of various regions of India.

First Published on Jan 17, 2023 10:13 AM