We talked to Mila Dayan on how Moderne provides highly tailored ad ideas and insights, offering a digital workspace for more effective brainstorming for creative minds and here is what she said about.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Mila Dayan: Thank you for asking. Despite all the challenges, we have been very fortunate. As my family is spread across the globe [Israel, Russia, Germany, Spain, Italy, US], it has been a tough year for visits and family meetings. But we are trying to stay safe and positive and support each other (mostly virtual) during these difficult times.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Moderne.
Mila Dayan: I am a female founder and entrepreneur; I want to share my belief — it all starts with AN IDEA! Everyday ideas are born, ideas to start a new business, to create a new product, big or small — ideas are driving change and innovation. From my childhood, I’ve been fascinated by the mysterious processes of creativity and idea generation, so I followed my creative instincts. With a professional background in advertising, art, and design, I’ve found myself conquer new horizons and leading my startup — Moderne.
Long story short — it all started with an IDEA to build a product that can help tackle the chaos of the creative process and help creative minds collect, create, and manage ideas and collaborate in one place. I was part of Leo Burnett’s creative crew. As an Art director, I successfully worked with large brands like Burger King, Kia, Samsung, etc. I’ve won some major advertising awards, including Cannes Lions. I wondered how we could rethink, transform and structure creativity — the last possible structured thing. How can we spend fewer hours researching, bringing less chaos to the brainstorming sessions, easier prepare assets to present ideas to other people? When I needed Moderne, it wasn’t there, so I decided to build it.
How does Moderne innovate?
Mila Dayan: The creative process in Ad agencies all around the world is still the same as in the 60s. Do you remember the Mad Men Series? Nothing has evolved much. A pen and paper are the primary instruments for creative teams. Within Moderne, we have tools and a creative database of trends, insights, and ideas that would help creative teams save time, collaborate, and get inspired.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Mila Dayan: Moderne is 100% remote. I was a digital nomad for the last three years, and I gather the team around the world to have that opportunity to work together no matter where we are, even before the COVID pandemic started to spread. I would like to live in a world where the line between home and office is nonexistent, and I am glad that we are pioneering not only a remote work trend but also building an entire platform remotely.
Unless we are a remote team, our clients are mostly Enterprise companies. At first, we faced some challenges reaching out to decision-makers in big companies. No one was there [in the office] to make any final decisions. As time passed, companies got used to online collaboration, and now I would even say that we are benefiting from the change.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Mila Dayan: Good question. As a young female interpreter, I face all kinds of challenges and difficult choices in my daily routine. In difficult times of the corona crisis, people are more open towards innovation, communication, and help. One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned so far is — not afraid to reach out to people and ask for a piece of advice or share an opinion. It could be life-changing.
Our world has been turned upside down since the outbreak of the Covid 19 crisis, people are trying to navigate in a new normal, and therefore another good lesson I’ve learned: we should think differently! Many standard approaches won’t work anymore, and time counts. So we should be creative and work fast! And we always remember: where data meets creativity, that’s where the magic happens**.**
What specific tools, software and management skills are you using to navigate this crisis?
Mila Dayan: The Covid 19 pandemics has changed the world and its effect will last. In the face of difficulty and the pandemic’s complex consequences, we are inspired to find innovative solutions. To stay up to date daily, we follow the latest Covid 19 trends and research to uncover valuable insights. I don’t have a specific tool but as a leader, I am trying to stay positive and supportive and share that energy with my team and people around me. Also, we are practicing creative activities and digital drawing together.
Your final thoughts?
Mila Dayan: Many words already said and written about the pandemic, many useful insights, and lessons to learn. I would love the Covid 19 pandemic would be over soon. One of the few positive highlights from the pandemic I could agree with is the acceleration of the digital revolution. Digitalization is a growing and lasting trend. I see it as a gateway to solve many of the problems emerging from the crisis and be an opportunity for startups to grow and evolve. Society, businesses, governments are open to change more than ever and ready to collaborate towards the same goal. We, as a startup, should give it a shoot!