Modesta Vaitonytė: Vinted’s Values Align With My Personal Ones
Meet Modesta, Vinted's Marketing Production Lead. She shares the story of her unusual journey to Vinted, what makes her job meaningful, the impact of the company’s growth, and how her leadership journey is going.
Hi! What is your name and job at Vinted?
I am Modesta Vaitonytė, and I work as a Marketing Production Lead at Vinted. My job is leading one of the Production teams and managing its creative projects, including TV and digital video content, radio, and OOH (out-of-home advertising) production.
When and how did you join? Why? (Be honest!)
It is quite a story! In fact, it was not on my first try that I joined Vinted. In 2018, I was working in a digital agency as a Project Manager. I had worked with multiple brands but wanted to move to the clients’ side. My sister told me that Vinted was hiring a Marketing Project Coordinator, so I applied.
The whole application process was smooth, but I did not get an offer after my try-out day. It was a bit sad, but Vinted made it easy as I got a personal and warm reply with their decision. They did not send me a message from a template – they shared the clear and transparent reason behind their choice. Maybe it was not my desired outcome of this story, but I felt motivated as I’d gotten so far.
Besides, Vinted made an impression as a workplace where people love and believe in what they do. So when after six months, I got a call from Vinted asking if I’d like to apply again, I did not hesitate. I didn't have to do the homework tasks again – I just had one interview and moved straight to the try-out day. I was even more overwhelmed by this second chance, as I truly wanted the position. This time, I got a phone call with great news. Vinted wanted me on the team, and I joined in October 2018.
What do you find meaningful about your job?
I like the dynamism of my work. Even though the processes repeat, every project is different. Hence, I can always learn, grow and find new approaches to my work. Another thing that I admire is constant problem solving because every time new challenges occur, you need to overcome them. That requires creativity – in a management position, too. This is because nothing is set in stone, and you, together with your team, need to find the best solutions to ever-occurring problems.
Also, I am fascinated by the team I work with. People often say how many talented, intelligent people work at Vinted. And that is true. When you work in an environment like this, you always feel inspired. We work as a team, where everyone cares, discusses, collaborates, and works together towards a common goal.
Besides, I have always wanted to work with one brand, know it and understand it inside out. That was missing when I worked in an agency. There, you work with multiple brands at the same time. But then you do not know them by heart. Here, at Vinted, it’s a different story. Now I can say that Vinted is my soulmate.
What makes it exciting for you to manage creative projects at Vinted?
To be honest, it’s all about people. We take a human-first approach in our work, as Vinted is a product and platform which connects people. So in creative projects, our style and direction are about being relevant and down to earth. We do not create advertisements about utopian fantasies but rather look back at people’s everyday lives to find inspiration.
It’s always easier to work on projects you believe in. That is the case at Vinted. In our advertisements, we tell honest stories that come from the real world. We create a product for people like us.
What are the most memorable projects that you have worked on?
One of the most memorable projects was the Vintedist, during which we did documentary-style interviews with Vinted members. We used no scripts, only real people and unique experiences. The whole process was enriching for everyone involved in this project. It was an ice-breaking project which gave a start to other beautiful creatives: from Vintedist-inspired execution in different markets such as the UK and France, to the latest projects we are currently working on.
It was memorable to learn how to participate in the video shoots online for the first time during lockdown. As well as to come back on a live set after almost two years. The shift takes 12 hours, and we work 3-4 days in a row, so attitude matters. For example, in one of the last shoots in Madrid, the director had the tradition to play a special song for each shot to enhance the mood for the actresses and actors. The result? The team of more than 20 people ended up dancing while the camera was rolling.
How is Vinted different from the last places you have worked at?
At Vinted, I would never describe people as a labour force, and our work is not only about monetary value. Everyone takes care of each other and works towards the same goal. Therefore, you feel appreciated for your work and feel the same about the people around you. That’s important because when you feel happy, you can achieve more. There is zero competition between employees, and we work together as a team, supporting each other. We value mental health and the human side of our work too.
What would be the top three things that have changed in the company since you started?
I’ve been working at Vinted for 3 years already, and the biggest change, of course, is the number of people that have joined the company. When I started, there were 200 of us. Now there are over 1000. Speaking about the Marketing department, it went from 20 to 100 people in three years. So the number of different people joining Vinted skyrocketed. But this large group has managed to preserve the culture and even enrich it. We are more diverse than ever before.
Of course, this has had its own challenges that drove change. When you work together with so many people, you must find new ways to work smarter. Therefore we are continuously working on adjusting our work processes. There is a need to be flexible when more and more people join our team. Also, new written rules appear. This is unavoidable because such a big group cannot work without them. Rules agreed on by word of mouth became formalised to establish clear processes and make sure we treat each other equally. For me, it’s exciting to see how we all manage to work in harmony.
When you joined Vinted, did you think that Vinted would scale up so fast?
I did not think that it would happen so fast. But all of us knew the ambitions. So together as a team, we worked towards achieving them. For me, the growth of Vinted became so visible after the quarantine period. It felt like a different company when so many people joined us, but as I said before – we managed to preserve the culture, which I care about.
How do you stay interested in staying with one company for a prolonged time?
In my previous work, I wanted a change after 2 years. Vinted is a different experience because of two things. Firstly, what is keeping me here is a strong culture and values which align with my personal ones. We grow, aim high, and work together towards achieving a common goal. Another thing is constant growth. I still feel that the company is vibrant and flexible. I certainly do not see stagnation as we always move forward.
Most importantly, I work with a product that I admire, and I think that is every marketing specialist’s aspiration. Vinted creates sustainable value for its users and us, its employees. The idea of a mission-driven approach that also improves Vinted members' lives is wonderful. So I feel complete here, and that, without a doubt, encourages me to stay.
What was the biggest challenge you overcame during this time? Was it a painful lesson to learn?
There were some challenges during my time here. It would be naive to think that everything is effortless. There are high and low moments. One of the latter was Covid with its isolation and changed reality which sounds a bit cliché but let’s face it – many of us were affected.
The company’s growth was a challenge as well. It’s always hard to change your work habits when you are used to working in one way. For example, recently, we changed how the Marketing department is structured and created new teams to operate more efficiently. These changes bring better results in the end, but the process itself is not always comfortable.
You recently became a Marketing Production Lead. How is this journey going?
It is still really fresh, and it will take time to adjust. But I’m happy about it. My team’s positive reaction was encouraging. So I am just starting this journey of helping my team grow and vice-versa. I get to grow as a lead as well, and the company supports it. There is leadership training, discussions, and other activities. So you can learn both theoretical and practical skills of management.
Also, I have a mentor, my lead, from whom I am learning how to ask the right questions and find the right answers. It is a mutual process based on trust and support. So it is an open and helpful environment.
By the way, do you use the Vinted app? If so, what is your way of using it?
Yes! I use the app at least once a month. I first tried it as a buyer. And when I started working at Vinted, I stopped buying fast fashion. Now, I choose between getting something on Vinted or buying a new high-quality item. It's amusing when people ask me, “where did you get this?” and I say, “Vinted”. Then I feel like I’m in one of our ads.
After some time, I started selling on the app as well. That’s because I wanted to declutter my wardrobe – it helps to declutter my head too. I usually give my buyers a good discount, because I no longer need these items but they can make someone happy.
Pick one piece of media to recommend. Why do you think it deserves someone’s attention, and what role does it play in your life?
I recommend the podcast The Hidden Brain about human behaviour based on brain research. I like this topic because the brain is a magical place for me. I am really interested in why we act in one way and not another in certain situations. And this podcast answers a lot of my questions.