Company Culture That Inspires - The Wendt Agency

Company Culture That Inspires

Company Culture That Inspires

Let’s be real – benefits matter. You won’t find me turning down extra days off, all-expense-paid retreats, company cell phone plans, or monthly taco bars. At the end of the day, though, perks and benefits like these are often just at the surface of what makes a company great to work at. A good vacation plan may draw employees in, but research shows that more individuals (including myself) seek out and stay in jobs where they are not only rewarded, but where they feel aligned with the mission and regularly receive purpose in what they do. In a recent survey, millennials reported that they are more likely to place culture above salary when looking for a new job. Which may not be too surprising given the shift in work mindset after Covid-19. However, if it’s not the long list of perks and benefits that define a company’s culture, then what is it?

Whether good or bad, the culture of your company is the atmosphere that permeates your workplace. It’s your everyday interactions and day-to-day mission. It’s the relationships with your employees and the purpose they feel. It’s the vision you carry with you as a leader throughout the day. Company culture is no longer just who you are on paper, it’s defined by who you are in the moment. And that’s what employees are after – intentional culture that motivates and is built from within.

The Wendt Agency has been in the people business for nearly a century, and we are, admittedly, always a work-in-progress. Though a good company culture is intentional, a great one also changes and evolves with every new season and every new employee. And, if we’re honest, it’s a challenge to always make that happen. But, here’s what we do well – we meet on a regular basis, we reevaluate, and we always practice gratitude.

“My favorite thing about the Wendt culture is watching our team contribute and participate,” said Jennifer Fritz, our adventurous leader and Wendt president. “We all recognize the value of a positive work environment and the strength in connecting with each other as a team. Our goal is to have an open and collaborative culture; one where everyone feels they have a voice and ability to contribute.”

And the truth is – we do! When a company reaches a certain threshold, it becomes easier to get stuck in the old ways of doing things. What’s kept Wendt going is its continuous evolution and reliance on team contribution.

“We are strong believers in empowering our team and giving them the freedom to make decisions. While there are long-time traditions like Wendt social times and summer hours, we work to keep things fresh with new ideas brought forward by the Culture Committee, like weekly trivia and cornhole tourneys,” said Fritz.

We may do things a certain way at Wendt, but when it comes to culture, there really isn’t just one playbook. Every company and team is different, and that’s how it should be. If we had to choose three contributing factors to a successful culture though, it’d be these – mission, vision, and relationship. In everything you do, let your team’s mission be what guides you. In every conversation you have, let there be vision in all that you communicate. And in every client and employee interaction, let it be the relationship that comes first and the task second.

Regardless of where you stand – employee, employer, business leader, or partner – we all have the desire to feel like what we do matters. And if you’re reading this, you likely have the ability to impact that. Together, we have the opportunity to pursue a company culture that both rewards and inspires.

WHY WE CHOOSE WENDT:

“My favorite thing about Wendt culture is the atmosphere of encouragement to work collaboratively and grow together as a team. We are all parts of one amazing collective, each bringing unique gifts and talents to the table. We’re each other’s cheerleaders and advocates.”

-Haley Thomas, Production Manager

“There are many positive aspects to our culture, but I think flexibility is high up on the list as to why we are successful. If I need to go down the street to my favorite coffee shop to boost some creative thinking, it’s endorsed. The ability to have flexibility in a fast-paced environment is crucial.

-Johnny Ewald, Senior Digital Designer

“The thing that keeps me here is the culture of creativity and positivity. Our merry band of misfits are always lifting each other up and making sure our individual efforts are highlighted and celebrated with the group as a whole.”

-Victor Fulcher, UX/UI Designer

“Wendt has become my family over the past few years. I love the people who work here and consider them to be more than just co-workers; they are my friends, my sisters and my brothers. Wendt has created an environment of people who truly care about each other and I am lucky to have this support in my life.”

-Meghan Shaulis, Graphic & Digital Designer

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CAITLIN CRUMLEY

CONTENT CREATOR

Forever chasing the Texas heat, Caitlin, along with her husband Rob, spend most of their time outdoors soaking in the sun and adventure. We know what you’re thinking…luckily for them, skiing is also a favorite pastime come winter! An adventurous spirit, but a perfectionist at heart, Caitlin brings excellence and attention to detail in all that she does.

Angela moody

CONTROLLER

An avid crafter who thrills at dreaming up new sewing, quilting, and crocheting projects, Angela enjoys spending most of her spare time with her husband, Gene, and her “pittie-kids,“ her pit bull fur-babies, Traeger and Lexi Lou.

Jennifer Fritz

PRESIDENT

Shareholder / Director 

Jen brings a sense of adventure and an inquisitive mind to all she does, whether that is sipping on a new tequila or inspiring a culture of learning at the agency. She and her husband Ryan enjoy the Montana lifestyle alongside their two children, Kate and Wren, and their fluffy family dog, Morris (named after a former Gonzaga basketball player!)

CAROL KRUGER

SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT

Shareholder / Director 

Irony is not without a sense of humor. Carol loves London, which is known for high tea, but deep down — Carol is a die-hard coffee lover. When it comes to her work, what excites her most is seeing it out in the world. Billboards to digital ads, strategy to placement, Carol is energized ensuring it all comes together in a final message. 

Lorie hager

CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER, CPA

Shareholder / Director 

  • Ethical and diligent financial leader.
  • Ensures financial department meets and exceeds accounting best practices.
  • Always detailed driven, making sure campaigns and projects are billed accurately and timely.

Looking for tricked-out tree houses or Airbnb homes in far-off locales fills Lorie’s downtime. But when she’s at work, she gets a heady sense of satisfaction when our Wendt team overcomes obstacles and celebrates successes. 

Kara smith

CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Shareholder / Director 

Kara is completely enchanted with the Caribbean. The humidity, the teal waters — if only our bustling office were as tranquil! Not just captivated by sandy beaches, Kara is fascinated with understanding what makes people think and enjoys how her work allows her to tap into people’s emotions.

Johna wilcox

SENIOR ACCOUNT MANAGER

Shareholder

  • Dynamic partnership builder.
  • Passionate about providing super service.
  • Designs robust strategies to surpass metrics of success.

Johna wouldn’t be stuck on a desert island without Vichy Ideal Soleil Solar Protective Water – Hydrating SPF30 Face Mist — after all, it’s a desert. Duh! But her real energy comes from working on dynamic projects and interacting with clients.

Kattie meyer

SENIOR ACCOUNT MANAGER

Shareholder

Traveling to Paris when her daughter is old enough would be a dream come true for Kattie. When not planning for trips abroad, Kattie is inspired by working with a variety of different clients who keep her challenged and on her toes. 

Merle Mcleish

MEDIA BUYER

Whether it’s genealogy or geocaching, the thrill of the hunt drives Merle. She also has a deep appreciation for art and art history, which is perfect for the creative and artistic atmosphere of Wendt where Merle feels right at home. 

Jennifer beisecker

ACCOUNTING ASSISTANT

  • Confidently approaches every project with energy and a smile.
  • Adept at tracking financials with accuracy.
  • Brings efficiency and a keen eye for detail that exceeds expectations.

Jenn enjoys spending as much time with her family as possible. Her husband, children, and extended family are everything. She also loves the absolutes of accounting; things balance, or they don’t. And she loves making it all add up. 

Jennifer mckee

DIGITAL STRATEGIST

A hiker, a skier, a mother, a wife, a friend, and an optimist, Jennifer cherishes spending her spare time with her husband, Johnathan, and their two children, Cormac and Maggie. 

Johnny ewald

SENIOR DIGITAL DESIGNER

SHAREHOLDER

Tacos! According to Johnny, tacos are the perfect combination of savory and simplicity — the possibilities are endless. Boundless creativity is infinite too. For Johnny, creativity begins as a tiny spark that ignites into form and serves a purpose. 

Sheena Annala

ART DIRECTOR

Sheena spends every spare moment with her young family. It’s all about having adventures — a philosophy she brings into the office. When at work, Sheena is thrilled to get the chance to do something new and creative every day. 

Victor Fulcher

UX/UI DESIGNER

Preserving bicycles, trinkets, and books brings Victor joy because he sees possibility in objects others might overlook. It’s this ability to make something from nothing that drives his work too. Being able to meld form, function, design, and code scratches the itch for both sides of his brain. 

Meghan Shaulis

UX/UI DESIGNER

Once her feet hit the floor, and after the coffee has been brewed, on Saturday mornings, you’ll find Meghan happily making breakfast for her family. If it were up to Meghan, she would never part from her husband. Lucky for us, she is also passionate about bringing her talents to the Wendt creative team and our clients. 

Gwen Fleming

CONTENT CREATOR

  • Curious creative who writes powerful copy with bold impact.
  • Brainstorms compelling content that inspires and incites action.
  • Ensures messaging is always engaging and on-brand.

Gwen’s lived from Portland, Maine to Portland, Oregon. New York City, Washington D.C., Los Angeles-ish; she invariably returns home to Montana … every time. She is passionate about using her experiences to create content that inspires strong impressions. 

Haley Thomas

PRODUCTION MANAGER

SHAREHOLDER

Haley has an immobilizing fear of grasshoppers. Not spiders, not snakes — GRASSHOPPERS. It’s surprising to know this, considering how fearless and fierce Haley is when creating efficient workflows. In fact, helping others is what she strives most to do.