Regardless of the line of work, I believe the most important thing a professional needs is a diverse and broad perspective on things.
With pladis, we do business in over 120 countries. That makes a whole lot of different nationalities, backgrounds, point of views and tastes.
As a global business of this reach, it is important for us to understand what our employees, customers and consumers on these different geographies think, want, need. This mainly shapes the way we operate.
I believe art is a valuable enabler in this regard. Although it can be seen as a common ground or even a literacy of somekind, a single art piece can trigger different emotions and perceptions in everyone.
Based on this point, it is important to understand “the other”, the ones that differ from oneself, especially in the business world. Imagine what lines of biscuits would there be if we only produced the ones that matched our taste…
Opening our minds to this enriching sense of aesthetics is very important and I encourage my executive team to increase their exposure to art. That is how our art tours were born. We visit exhibitions as a team and discuss about the pieces we see, exchange different point of views.
When it comes to collecting or ownership of art, I think we never really own the art pieces but rather be their temporary bearers as long as we have them. And making sure they are seen and appreciated by the public is a responsibility that comes with the pieces.
That is why at our company, we embrace the principle of open office/exhibition. Our collection is showcased 24/7 in our building in Istanbul so that everyone; both colleagues and visitors from outside the company could come and visit.
Moreover, the collection is not limited to a single area, our colleagues are free and encouraged to hang pieces that they appreciate in their own rooms. Same rule applies in Istanbul, London, New York, basically in all of our offices around the world. And I am happy to see that this “beyond borders” exhibition expands in domino effect.
On a corporate level, we support art as much as we can through sponsorships and events that meet art with large masses, especially children. Cultivating the sense of aesthetics in children is all the more important which forms the basis of our junior art ateliers. We also support young talents, academics by enabling them access to leading international art events.
Art is embraced not just on a corporate level but brand level as well. We have several brands partnering up with artists and telling their stories through art.
So my point is this; art doesn’t just enhance you on a personal level but also enriches your way of looking at things and your way of working.
In this sense, it can be seen as a way of working itself and I believe making more room for this type of way of working in the business world is just what we need!