Posts

Do you have to leave Greece to start your career?

We talked to Daphne Xourafi this week and our conversation raised one daunting question.

Can you find work in Greece if you are a highly trained and skilled young professional?

The social and economic crisis has deeply affected the living conditions and opportunities in Greece, resulting in unemployment and a poor working environment. Human capital flight, or brain drain is usually described as a problem that needs to be solved.

However, there are benefits that can be derived from this process. The country can naturally profit when talented workers return with new competencies and carry the prospect to create better job possibilities for Greeks. Another phenomenon that also acts as a bridge between the Greek and the international scene is the attraction of foreign human capital. Professional nomads are not merely tourists but they come to Greece to start a new life. They spread a strongly desired global mindset by carrying professional, social and personal skills.

Usually, the returners and the nomads choose to shelter their activities in co-working spaces, like the creative hub Stone Soup, because of the limitless networking potential and the inspiration one such dynamic environment may offer.

The effects of brain drain are quite visible in our daily practice, but should we despair?

Daphne was introduced to us as a talented, young professional looking for opportunities abroad. She has spent six months in Paris, at Université de Versailles Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines with the Erasmus programme, she holds a Bachelor’s degree in Communication and Mass Media from the University of Athens (UOA) and a Master’s Degree in Computer Animation and VFX from the University of Dundee.

Daphne is a passionate and determined person driven by her passion and ambition to distinguish in her profession. She has a broad range of interests and skills that she acquired during her education or she was self-taught, such as illustration, concept and comic art and 2D & 3D animation and she is already acknowledged for her work in some of these. In 2017 she illustrated a children’s book written by Cleopatra Deliou, a lecturer of Athens University of Economics and Business, and she released her own comic in Comicdom Athens Convention called “Requiem in Deep Blue”.

Both experiences were very important to build her confidence as an artist and gain constructive feedback to help her improve creatively and to build her network. A few months after graduating, Daphne returned to Greece, while seeking positions worldwide, in concept art, character design and animation, with the long-term plan to direct animation films. Asking for career advices she ended up at Stone Soup where she had the opportunity to network and to cowork on some freelance projects.

Daphne considers Stone Soup as an environment where global job possibilities come up all the time through getting to know all kinds of freelancers and you may find yourself committed in ongoing or future projects very naturally. Thus, she came to realisation that going abroad is not the only choice, because there are places for people to perform and network in an international setting in Greece too.

So if you are planning to leave Greece…

We hope we gave you enough reasons why you might want to drop by and check what is simmering for you here!

If interested you can reach here Daphne’s portfolio and LinkedIn profile.

 

Residents at Stone Soup Comment on GDPR Compliance

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) aims to introduce a single legal framework applicable across all EU member state which would result in a more consistent set of data protection compliance obligations for businesses. Not only does GDPR concern businesses working with data within the EU, but also the non-EU companies. The GDPR has been passed keeping in mind the safety and security of the users’ personal data. Therefore, GDPR is focused on achieving a high degree of data security. Knowing that their data will be safe, the clients will put their trust in companies which would be beneficial as that would result in an increase in the companies’ customer base.

However, besides the advantages of a complete GDPR compliance, companies are facing a few problems in regard to full compliance. Too much regulation in terms of adding consent prompts for everything might reduce customer’s enjoyment of online services. Another common problem of GDPR compliance is the costs to be incurred in order to fully comply with the regulation since, not all companies can meet these costs. When asked about her opinions on complete GDPR compliance, Xanthippe Lemontzoglou, a data analyst working from Stone Soup feels that 90% compliance with the GDPR might be a better idea which would involve companies to do the best they can without trying to cover extreme possibilities, yet being aware of them. She feels that complete compliance might not be beneficial for either the companies or the users.

Other than its effects on the companies and the users, GDPR also has an impact on the designers as it will alter how the products are developed both in Europe where the law applies in every country, and in the United States, where many companies have European customers. Thus, this will partly reshape the work that the designers do. According to Dimitris Niavis, a designer currently residing at Stone Soup, designers are required to act on these changes almost immediately and that involves taking into account current and future User Experience. The information now needs to be more accessible and the users should have an option to easily opt out of the subscriptions.


Therefore, GDPR now requires companies to respect the users more than ever and this can be done by making some prominent changes at the company level which would involve training of the employees keeping in mind the new regulations, and also the user experience.

Although, there are many visible cons of the GDPR compliance regarding the costs incurred by the companies and ignorance on the user’s side, these problems are only temporary. The companies and the users need time to adapt to the new regulations and once that is in place, GDPR will prove to be effective in terms of the user experience and cybersecurity.

If you would like to read more, refer to the following websites:

https://www.fastcompany.com/90171699/what-is-gdpr-and-why-should-designers-care

https://www.endpointprotector.com/blog/gdpr-the-pros-and-the-cons/

https://www.cbsit.co.uk/2017/07/28/gdpr-risks-business/

https://www.welivesecurity.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/Is-GDPR-good-or-bad-news-for-business.pdf

https://www.tripwire.com/state-of-security/security-awareness/gdpr-the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly/

 

 

 

 

 

 

Introducing Odd Bleat

We would like to give a warm welcome to our new neighbors Odd Bleat.

Odd Bleat is a versatile director duo between Yannis Zoumakis and Manos Gerogiannis, who  write, design, direct and animate for TV and web.

Collaborating since 2009, in 2015 they founded Odd Bleat, creating commercials which have already brought them numerous awards and recognition. Their work is characterized by subversive humor and attention to detail, while also retaining a soothing simplicity which has become their trademark. They have created short films that opened festivals around the world.

An example of their work is their first experimental documentary, or as they call it mockumentary, about the wise giants that live amongst us. It is called Jachalay and has been screened in numerous festivals around the globe and has also won the Best Documentary Award in TOP Shorts.

A more representative commercial project of their work though, would be the TV commercial they created for the European Reliance, which is written, directed, designed and animated by them.

In order to increase awareness and civic engagement, Odd Bleat have created a short animation film for Odyssea, a social enterprise designing resilient solutions for environmental and humanitarian challenges in Greece.

A short bio:

Yannis and Manos are both from Heraklion, Crete and have known each other for many years. They have studied together graphic arts and design in the Technological Educational Institution of Athens and did their internship at NOMINT, a multi-awarded animation production company. When Manos moved to London to do his masters in filmmaking-directing he continued working with Yannis through Skype and in 2015 they founded Odd Bleat. After Manos returned, they found their new home under the Stone Soup roof and have been housing their offices here ever since.

Odd Bleat have worked for many clients abroad, in Canada, Lebanus, London, New Zealand and USA but also with organizations here in Greece like the Piraeus Bank, the Coca Cola foundation, European Reliance and more. Apart from these projects, they have also worked with non-profit organizations like the UN, TedX and Odyssea.

You can see more of their work on their website or their Facebook page!

Stay tuned for more!