Working in Web Design - Paul Boag26:30 with Dan Gorgone
In this episode of Treehouse Friends, Paul Boag, co-founder of web design agency Headscape, sits down to discuss his the many aspects of working in web design. Whether you're starting out, trying to stay current, or starting your own business, Paul's shares his experience and advice for candidates trying to find jobs, entrepreneurs trying to build their business, and professionals working with clients. He also provides a preview of his Treehouse course, How to Build a Web Design Business.
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[MUSIC] 0:00 >> Hey, everyone. Welcome back to Treehouse Friends. 0:05 I'm Dan Gorgone, one of the teaching leaders here at Treehouse. 0:07 And we're joined today by Paul Boag, co-founder of Headscape. 0:11 Paul, thanks for comin'. 0:14 >> No problem. 0:15 Really good to be here. 0:16 >> Paul, can you tell us about your experience as 0:17 a designer, and with working with hundreds of clients at Headscape? 0:19 >> Mm-hm. 0:23 Wow. 0:25 You want me to sum up you know, what is it, nearly 20 years of web design 0:26 in, in. >> Maybe 140 characters, like a tweet. 0:30 >> 140 characters. >> Yeah. 0:32 >> I enjoy it, it's good. They go. 0:33 How about that? >> Excellent. 0:36 Can you expand upon it, maybe a blog post now. 0:37 >> [LAUGH] Okay, okay. 0:39 I absolutely love working with clients. I'm a bit weird like that. 0:41 You get a lot of web designers 0:44 that complain, don't they, about their clients and. 0:45 Hate clients. 0:48 Working with clients is horrible. 0:49 And they wish that they could go and, you 0:51 know, set up tree house or something like that. 0:53 But personally, I really enjoy working with clients. 0:55 I feel that, find it a really rewarding experience to take. 0:58 It's almost a, a teaching thing. Almost a little bit like what you guys do. 1:02 That you have a client come in that really 1:06 doesn't have a good understanding of now the web works. 1:08 They need this website. 1:11 And I get to educate them, and take them through the process. 1:13 And at the end of it, hopefully they 1:16 end up with this website that they absolutely love, 1:18 that they're really enthusiastic about and they understand 1:20 why the website is the way it is. 1:24 So, you know, I don't believe in going away and, and creating magic 1:26 without the client being involved, and then presenting a design and going ta-da. 1:31 Here's the magic moment. 1:36 Instead, I work really collaboratively with clients and I 1:38 will engage them in every step of the process. 1:41 They're learning along 1:45 the way. 1:46 So I mood board with them, I wire frame with them. 1:46 We discuss business objectives together. 1:49 We talk about users together. 1:51 I try and get them involved in user testing. 1:53 I really include the client as much as possible. 1:56 So when the, they get this final website. 1:58 A, they feel like it's there website that they're passionate about. 2:02 And B they are, they've learned along the way and 2:05 they understand why the website is the way it is. 2:08 >> Well speaking of learning you were in recently with us here in the studio. 2:11 >> Yeah. 2:15 >> And delivering some content about running a successful web design business. 2:16 Something that you've done for now over a dozen years. 2:22 >> Yeah, yeah. 2:25 >> What can members expect from that series of videos? 2:26 >> Well, I've got this you, what you want me 2:30 to do now, is show that how great, and how wonderful 2:34 it is. And, but I'm gonna lower expectations. 2:36 [LAUGH] All right? 2:39 There is no guarantee that if you, if you do this 2:40 particular course, that you're gonna with a successful web design business. 2:44 But what I do do, is I do share my experiences of what's worked for me. 2:47 The reason I don't, I think you can't say you'll definitely walk away with 2:53 a successful web design business is because 2:57 it depends on your definition of success, 2:59 doesn't it? 3:01 What I may consider to be a successful web design business might be different to you. 3:02 But, we will look at all kinds of subjects 3:07 that will certainly help you create a good foundation. 3:10 So, we look at marketing, we look at sales and pitching, writing proposals. 3:13 We get into all kinds of stuff about building a lifestyle business in what, 3:18 no doubt we'll talk more about that later, but I also talk about things 3:22 like getting work done. 3:26 You know, I know it's a stupid thing, but you know, when you're trying to run 3:29 your own business, you get so many interruptions, 3:32 and how do you actually get, get stuff done? 3:35 So we cover the whole kind of gamut of things that I've learned 3:37 over the years about kind of making a web design business really work. 3:42 I mean, it's a whole different set 3:46 of concerns when you're working for someone else. 3:47 >> Hm. 3:51 Versus working for yourself. >> Yeah. 3:51 >> When you're working for someone else, there are those responsibilities. 3:53 There are timelines. 3:56 There are people that, that literally are telling you what to do. 3:57 >> Yeah. 4:00 >> Whereas, you have to rely upon discipline Yeah. 4:01 >> And determination. >> Yeah. 4:04 >> And also probably a great of guilt >> Mm-hm. 4:06 >> And self-doubt when you're working for yourself, right? 4:09 >> And also I think there's a lot of people 4:12 have a lot of unrealistic expectations when they start out. 4:14 >> 4:17 Mm-hm. 4:17 >> So one of the things people think is, 4:17 they sit down and go, well hang on a minute. 4:19 I know I'm being charged out at 500, you know, dollars a day or whatever. 4:22 And I know I'm getting paid considerably less. 4:27 If I was working for myself $500 a day times 4:29 five days a week times 52 weeks in a year, wow. 4:32 >> Mm-hm. 4:36 >> I'm gonna be raking it in. 4:36 But then of course they forget, holidays, sickness, 4:38 admin, dealing with clients, accounting, chasing bad debts. 4:41 >> Mm-hm. 4:45 >> All of these, kind of, other 4:45 things that surround running a web design business. 4:46 And, so, often. 4:50 People set up as a freelancer, thinking they're gonna, you 4:51 know earn more, work less hours, be their own boss. 4:54 And instead, what ends up happening is that they under charge themselves. 4:59 They have to work really long hours because they take 5:02 on too much work and end up working a lot 5:04 harder than they did before. 5:06 And on top of which, instead of just having one 5:08 awkward boss to deal with, now they've got every single client. 5:10 >> Mm-hm >> Who's being awkward and demanding. 5:14 So, the reality of going freelancing freelancer, and running your 5:16 own web design business is often very different from the expectations. 5:21 And it's how to get back to that vision. 5:26 How to do you get back to a situation where, you're working less. 5:28 You're in control of the work that you're doing. 5:31 And you're working with great clients you enjoy working with. 5:34 >> And this is what the concept of a lifestyle business, is all about? 5:37 >> Yes. >> Right? 5:41 >> Yes, 5:41 >> So, you mentioned that, what is the lifestyle business? 5:41 What is, what is that? >> Yeah. 5:44 >> Cuz I know it depends for everyone. Right? 5:46 >> Absolutely. 5:48 >> It's a different set of, of needs, and, and obligations. 5:49 >> Mm-hm. >> But also defining success. 5:52 So, what is the lifestyle business? >> To me, there, there are kind of two 5:53 fundamental ways of doing business, okay? 5:56 There's the, the people that are entrepreneurs that set up a business. 6:00 And the idea is they build it up and then they sell it on. 6:05 And they go and, and drink piña coladas on the beach somewhere. 6:08 >> Mm-hm. And then there are lifestyle businesses. 6:11 And these are businesses where you'll create, you go into business for 6:14 yourself because you want to achieve certain things in your own life, 6:18 that you want to be able to work less maybe earn more money, 6:22 be more flexible in your working hours, or whatever it is that you want. 6:27 And those are businesses that have to provide a return every day to you. 6:31 It's, you're not living for the future you're living for today. 6:36 And that's really the kind of business most people that 6:39 set up a web design agency or go freelance are after. 6:42 Yet, so much of the time we end up living 6:45 for the future, oh it will get easier, you know? 6:49 And once I'm more established, it'll be easier further down the line, you know? 6:52 And today I have to put in really long 6:56 hours and, and kind of give up my social life. 6:57 But it will be better later on, and that's not the way to live, you know, it's the 7:00 old adage, isn't always gets this the wrong way 7:04 round, of you know we should, shouldn't be living to 7:07 work, we should be working to live. >> Mm-hm. 7:10 No, the other way around. 7:13 See I told you I would get it the wrong way around. 7:14 [LAUGH] You know, its this idea that a business should facilitate 7:16 your lifestyle, rather than your life being dedicated to your business. 7:19 That's a lifestyle business. 7:24 >> Well I think some people starting out as freelancers are 7:26 starting their own business, may feel very nervous, very, very challenged by 7:30 the fact that they don't have a lot 7:35 of experience, a lot of projects in their portfolio. 7:37 >> Yeah. 7:41 >> And so the risk, or, or the idea 7:41 could be that they should take whatever comes their way. 7:46 >> Yes. 7:49 >> Just take anything they can, start padding the résumé. 7:49 >> Yeah. 7:52 >> And then later on, that portfolio will 7:53 look even better to the ideal clients they want. 7:55 >> Yes. 7:58 >> Or, or the type of projects that they wanna get. 7:58 Is that 8:00 a good strategy? 8:00 Should, when you're starting out should you just 8:01 kind of take whatever you can, or should 8:02 you, should you work with family, friends and 8:05 family [CROSSTALK] to do those types of things? 8:08 What do, what do you recommend for people starting out? 8:11 >> Yeah, this is a really difficult question. 8:14 >> Hm. 8:16 >> Because it's the kind of the theoretical 8:17 and the idealistic way of working, and then. 8:20 Mm-hm. 8:22 >> There's the reality of it. The reality is, to begin 8:22 with, you take anything. >> Mm-hm. 8:26 >> You know, you've gotta get money behind you. 8:28 And, and a lot of freelancers do what is very sensible, which is that 8:30 they build up that portfolio in evenings 8:33 and weekends while they're doing the day job. 8:35 So that the point comes where they've just 8:38 got too much work to deal with the evenings 8:39 and weekends and they're kind of forced to go 8:41 freelance, and that's probably the best way of working. 8:43 In terms of working with friends and family, ouch. 8:47 Yes. 8:49 [LAUGH] >> Never, 8:49 never a good thing, but again, when you're 8:51 starting out, you know, beggars can't be choosers. 8:53 >> Mm-hm. 8:56 >> I think where it becomes important to be picky, is in terms 8:56 of how you present yourself to the world, and how you market yourself. 9:02 So although, you know, don't turn away work when you start off. 9:07 But equally, don't advertise yourself or promote yourself as being a jack of 9:11 all trades and master of none. 9:16 You know, decide who you want to target, and, and target that group of people. 9:18 You might specialize, as I say, in, in the videos that we cover. 9:23 You might specialize in eCommerce sites or WordPress sites. 9:27 you might focus in a particular geographical area or in 9:32 a particular sector like charity websites or higher education websites. 9:35 So, there's a difference between what you accept is work that kind 9:41 of comes to you and what you actively pursue if that makes sense. 9:44 So that's kind of how I would divvy it up. 9:48 >> And does it help to have an 9:50 interest, you know, a passion in the subject 9:52 matter or in the perhaps, the cause behind 9:55 some of these clients and projects as well? 9:59 I can imagine that it would be much easier to 10:01 think about that work. >> Yeah. 10:07 >> So, when you think about, oh, I have this project to do, and I have this 10:08 client I have to take care of, it must 10:11 be much easier to think about doing those projects. 10:12 >> Yeah. 10:15 When you have a personal stake or a personal interest in them. 10:15 >> Absolutely. It makes a huge difference. 10:18 I mean, I, one of the big sectors that we work in is the charity sector. 10:20 And working on charity work sites is so much more 10:24 rewarding than working on, you know, some boring arse government 10:27 website, or something. 10:31 [LAUGH] You know, because of the subject matter. 10:33 Because of what it is you're promoting. 10:35 That said, I think you need to cultivate in yourself The ability 10:37 to get enthusiastic and compassionate about whatever it is you're working on. 10:44 >> Mm-hm. 10:47 >> Because finding that thing in a project that 10:48 sets you on fire is absolutely key because the client 10:51 will pick up on if you don't care about a project, a client will know that. 10:56 And that's when they'll have to start 11:01 caring more, which means they start micromanaging, 11:03 and they start getting involved in things you don't want them to get involved in. 11:06 So find something on the project that makes you passionate. 11:10 It might be the subject matter. 11:13 Or it might be the technology you're applying 11:14 to it, or you're using a new technique, 11:16 or you've seen this really cool design trick 11:18 that you wanna try out, or whatever it is. 11:20 Find something in every project that you can get excited about. 11:22 If you're excited about a project, you will carry the client with you. 11:25 And, you know, and actually enthusiasm will take you such a long way. 11:30 I joked on the videos that I've recorded for you guys 11:35 about how I have one client where I was getting so 11:38 excited and enthusiastic the client said to me how can I 11:42 possibly say no to you Paul, it would be like kicking 11:45 a puppy. >> Mm-hm. 11:47 >> And, you know, that kind of sums it up. 11:48 If you're enthusiastic you'll take the client with you. 11:51 >> So, on that note I think that 11:54 many of us would imagine that the perfect client 11:56 would be one that wants to, well, really wants 11:59 to pay you a million dollars to do nothing. 12:04 >> Oh. >> Really, nothing at all. 12:06 >> Yeah, I'd agree with that [LAUGH]. 12:06 >> but, you know, in terms of the ideal client and I, and I suppose it, 12:07 it also depends on the skills and interests and everything. 12:12 But, you know, what is the perfect client? 12:15 What is, what is. >> Yeah. 12:16 >> What is a great client? 12:17 What makes them up and, and for people that, maybe people 12:18 that are watching this, that are thinking about contracting with others. 12:23 >> Yeah. 12:26 How can they be a better client. >> Hm. 12:27 >> For a project? 12:29 >> That's a really, there's kinda two questions there. 12:30 >> Sure. >> You're right. 12:32 The perfect, the perfect client is definitely one that 12:32 pays you a million dollars and, and doesn't require 12:35 anything back. >> Sure. 12:37 >> I think we're all in agreement on that. 12:38 >> Sure. 12:39 >> But, being a little bit more realistic about it. 12:40 For me, it's, it's all about engagement and relationship. 12:43 Okay? 12:48 So, if you have a client that's willing to engage and get stuck in, roll 12:49 up their sleeves and get stuck into the process, that goes such a long way. 12:53 The clients that just want you to go away and produce a website. 12:58 Actually, 13:02 you would think that they would be the best clients. 13:02 Because they, you know, they're, they're hands 13:05 off and they're letting you do your thing. 13:07 But, actually, what normally happens, is you produce a 13:10 website and then they complain and moan about it. 13:12 So, you really want a client that kind of engages from the very beginning. 13:14 >> Mm-hm. 13:17 The other thing that you need is a client where 13:17 there is a really good rapport between you and that client. 13:20 All right? 13:24 Their kind of people that you get on with personally. 13:24 And the reason 13:27 that's so important is because, if you're, if you 13:28 actually build a relationship with your supplier, or your client, 13:30 depending on which side of the fence you're on Then, 13:34 it, it, it makes everything go much, so much smoother. 13:36 You tend to be much more laid back about 13:39 problems and challenges, which are never to be come up. 13:42 You recognize that this person is trying really hard on your behalf, 13:45 and so it kind of shifts the relationship and makes things go 13:49 much smoother. 13:53 But also, as a, as a web designer if you've 13:54 got a client which you just get on with, you 13:58 feel more relaxed and willing to challenge them and say, 14:01 well, I don't thing that necessary is the best way. 14:04 >> Mm-hm. >> Perhaps we could try this instead. 14:06 And that's where things really spark. 14:08 But it works the other way around as well, that if you 14:11 respect your client, then you're willing to listen to their ideas and opinions. 14:13 >> Mm-hm. >> And you don't have that stroppy 14:17 moment that we all have as designers, going, I'm the designer! 14:18 Listen to me! 14:21 >> [LAUGH] 14:22 >> You know, it's much more of a kind of two-way relationship. 14:23 I mean, the best client I ever, ever 14:25 worked with was for a large e-commerce site. 14:27 And he, he would I would always be pushing him and challenging him. 14:31 And he would push me back. 14:36 And he called me a, a, a pinko 14:38 communist because I always [LAUGH] put the user first. 14:39 And I called him a mon, 14:43 money grabbing capitalist cuz he just 14:44 wanted to extract money [LAUGH] from people. 14:45 And that was the kind of relationship we had, and it was great. 14:47 And it worked really well. 14:50 So, it's those, and he was really engaged as well. 14:51 So, it's those two factors, being gay, get a client 14:54 that's engaged, and also get somebody you get on with. 14:56 That's what you're really looking for. 14:59 And, here's the important thing: If you go through that initial 15:01 proposal stage, and you're going in the back of your head, 15:05 oh, oh I'm not sure about this, be brave. Be brave and walk away. 15:08 And that's very difficult at the beginning of a project. 15:13 You have projects, and you're trying to Keep yourself busy, but it's so important. 15:16 If those things aren't there, it'll be a bad 15:21 project and you're not gonna make money out of it. 15:24 >> Mm-hm. 15:26 And I think, you know, those, those two characters 15:26 that you talked about probably would make a good sitcom. 15:28 >> Yeah. 15:31 >> Really good half-hour comedy. 15:31 >> Yeah, absolutely. >> And the web designer and 15:32 the clients. >> Yeah, yeah. 15:34 >> [LAUGH] 15:35 >> Well I was thinking about there, 15:35 the pinko communist and the capitalist money grabber. 15:36 >> That's them. 15:39 >> That would, yeah. Perfect. 15:39 [LAUGH] So, for, for designers and developers working 15:40 in the industry now you know, there so very busy with client work, and 15:46 maybe they even have a day job, but they have all 15:51 these other obligations as well, family and everything else going on. 15:53 It's extremely busy. >> Yeah. 15:57 >> To. 15:59 Its extremely busy and its extremely difficult at times to stay current. 16:01 >> Yes. 16:05 >> You know, new things come out all the time, new 16:05 versions of, of software, and updates to language, and, and new apps. 16:06 How do, I mean, how do you stay current? 16:12 >> [LAUGH] 16:13 >> You know, how do, how do you stay current? 16:14 How does the team at Headscape stay current and, you know, 16:15 what advice can you offer for designers and developers out there? 16:18 To be honest, this, this whole thing 16:22 of we're all so busy, okay? We're as busy as we allow ourselves to be. 16:25 >> Mm-hm. >> Right? 16:31 Work will expand to fill the space that you give it. 16:32 I'm a great believer in working smarter rather than longer. 16:36 So, there are all kinds of techniques that we talk 16:40 about in the, in the videos about how to do that. 16:42 But I think what I would really encourage is you have to set aside time. 16:45 Whether you think you've got that time or not, you have to set 16:50 aside time to do research, to keep 16:53 up-to-date, to, to keep engaged with things. 16:56 And ring fence that, and refuse to compromise over that time. 17:00 And you will find you'll get the work done. 17:05 You will get the work done within the 17:08 available time that you give it, you give it. 17:10 >> Mm-hm. >> It's amazing. 17:13 And it, it feels like 17:14 it makes no sense but it works. 17:15 So that's one part of it, is ring fencing time. 17:18 I think it, it's also about, not kind of picking and choosing where you learn from. 17:21 Okay. 17:28 That the internet is full with amazing content okay, 17:28 and you can end up looking in so many different 17:32 places that you're actually seeing a lot of the 17:34 same thing again, and again, and again, in various forms. 17:37 So I think 17:40 narrow it down and pick a small number of sources that you work from. 17:41 You know, Treehouse might be one example but equally it could 17:45 be you know, certain RSS feeds, or certain people that you read. 17:47 But limit the number of sources you go to. 17:51 Find certain individuals that are trustworthy sources, and rely on 17:53 them to do a lot of the filtering for you. 17:57 So that's another thing that you can do. 18:00 So there are lots essentially of, of kind of managing your time. 18:02 Managing the sources that you're looking at in 18:06 order to not get too overwhelmed by it all. 18:09 >> Battlestar Galactica. 18:13 >> [LAUGH] Yeah? 18:14 >> Or Doctor Who? Oh, that's really cruel! 18:15 >> I didn't say they were gonna be easy questions. 18:19 >> You see now, that's really unfair. 18:22 >> Mm-hm. 18:23 >> I'll tell you why it's unfair. 18:24 Cuz Battlestar Galactica, is without a bit of doubt, 18:25 the best piece of sci-fi television that's ever been made. 18:28 Right, so, it, on that basis, it has to win. 18:30 But in terms of emotional attachment as a British guy. 18:34 >> [LAUGH] That grew up, you know, teatimes on Saturday, sitting 18:41 down with my parents, watching Doctor Who, hiding behind the sofa. 18:45 Cuz I really did do that. 18:49 >> Mm-hm. >> Being terrified of it. 18:51 And then as an adult. 18:54 Where it's been rebooted and restarted and having my son 18:56 and connecting with him it's got to be Doctor Who. 18:59 So, I'm sorry, but I'm gonna go Doctor Who. 19:03 >> [LAUGH] Okay. 19:05 I was gonna say you were going to cop out in the end there. 19:07 You were gonna say, no both of' em. 19:08 >> No no. 19:09 I've got, I've got to follow my heart, and that's what I've got to do. 19:10 >> Okay, Star Trek or Star Wars. 19:14 >> Oh, Star Wars, that's easy. >> Okay, all right. 19:15 >> You're making up questions as you go along, now, aren't you? 19:20 I can tell. 19:22 >> No, this is, this, for the middle part, the sci fi section. 19:22 >> Oh the sci fi section of the show. >> You didn't see that part. 19:25 >> I didn't know that was in it. >> Last question of the sci-fi part. 19:27 >> Yeah. >> The doctor. 19:30 >> Yeah. >> Or, Sherlock Holmes. 19:32 >> Whoa. 19:35 >> Well, Sherlock Holmes isn't sci-fi. >> Yeah, but it's still fantasy. 19:36 >> So that's fine. 19:38 Are, they're pretty much one and the same thing these days, aren't there? 19:39 >> Really? 19:42 >> I mean, you got Steven Moffat 19:42 writing Doctor Who, you've got Steven Moffat 19:44 writing Sherlock. So there you go. 19:45 It's the same character basically. 19:47 >> Okay. >> It's gotta be Doctor Who. 19:48 >> That's one answer. 19:50 >> Cuz he's a, he's a time traveling alien. 19:51 I mean, that's gotta be cooler than Sherlock Holmes. 19:53 >> Okay. 19:55 Fair enough. >> And also I'm good wholesome person. 19:55 I mean, you know, Sherlock Holmes, he's a drug addict. 19:57 How could I possibly support that? 20:00 >> Okay, after the show you can tell me what you really think. 20:03 >> Yeah I'll tell you the truth then, later. 20:05 >> Okay, all right. 20:06 Now, back to the program. 20:06 >> So are we gonna talk about web design again? 20:07 >> Back to the program. 20:09 >> [LAUGH] >> When Headscape and other design 20:10 agencies are looking for new talent >> Yes. 20:11 >> Obviously there are certain positions where you have specific needs. 20:13 >> Yeah. 20:18 >> And other times, you're just, you're looking for someone great. 20:18 >> Yeah. 20:20 >> Now, hat is it you're looking for in new 20:21 talent for someone that wants to come work for you. 20:24 Is it, do you have to have or is there work experience versus college diploma? 20:27 >> Right, yeah. >> What is it, exactly? 20:33 Okay, to some extent it depends on who you're hiring, right? 20:36 I'll be honest, designer I don't give a monkeys 20:39 what their education is, it's all about their portfolio, okay? 20:41 If they've got great portfolio work then I'm sold. 20:44 With developers, it's a little bit more 20:47 complicated because having a having a university 20:50 education in Computer Science provides certain analytical 20:54 skills that are really useful for a developer. 20:58 But, put it like this. 21:01 I'm not gonna ever rate, you know, to bits 21:03 of paper that highly, compared to, to real world experience. 21:05 And I recognize you get into this Catch 22 21:11 of how do you kind of start in your career. 21:14 Because everybody wants experience, and you don't have experience. 21:15 So we're very careful not to judge too heavily on experience. 21:18 Will do, if you haven't got a lot of experience, we'll set you a test to do. 21:22 We'll give you a coding 21:25 challenge and if you can do that, then perhaps that answers our questions. 21:26 But to re, be honest, really skills, skills are the easy bit. 21:30 Right? 21:34 I can teach anybody. Well, you can teach anybody. 21:36 That's what you do. 21:39 >> Sure. 21:40 >> You can teach anybody to, to learn how 21:40 to code pretty much anything or to do design. 21:42 That's easy. 21:44 Right? 21:46 You know, I can hire someone, I can give them 21:46 a Treehouse account, off they go and they can learn it. 21:49 What really matters are finding the people 21:52 with the right personality and right attitude. 21:56 So every cult, every company has its own culture. 22:00 And you need to find people that fit in with 22:04 that culture, that kind of have the same outlook on life. 22:06 Not the same types of people, you don't want everybody to be 22:10 a clone of one another, but kind of have the same attitude 22:14 towards work and the same attitude towards business and that kind of stuff. 22:17 >> Mm-hm. 22:20 >> So that's one aspect. 22:22 Then you need people that have real tinkerers, for want of a better word. 22:23 People that are obsessed with playing with the web, right? 22:27 Because the web changes so rapidly. 22:30 You know, you can have a university degree in whatever you 22:33 want but that's gonna be irrelevant in two three years time. 22:37 What matters is somebody 22:41 that's a lifelong learner. 22:42 There are a lot of different ways of learning. 22:44 But, the, the, the, the way that I 22:46 love the most are people that experiment and play. 22:48 You know I love it when our designers and developers you know, create some 22:51 new-lit way of doing things, and they show it to me, and it's like, right! 22:56 We're gonna use that from now on. >> Mm-hm. 22:59 >> I had a classic example recently. 23:01 One of the challenges we have at Headscape, as a lot 23:02 of web design agencies do, is how to show a client 23:05 responsiveness, you know, when you're at the kind of design stage. 23:08 And our designer had, you know, been working 23:12 till 3, 4 in the morning, just playing 23:14 with some clever app that, you know, allowed 23:16 design to reformat itself to show to clients. 23:19 And, you know, he wasn't gettin' paid to do that. 23:23 But he did it anyway. 23:26 And it's that kind of obsessive compulsive behavior that I love, you know. 23:27 But it's not about the 23:32 working the long hours. 23:33 It's about the playing and the experimenting. 23:34 >> Sure. So, and this is the last question. 23:36 >> Okay. 23:39 So, I've gotta be, is it a really good question? 23:40 >> It's, no. Probably the worst one. 23:43 >> It's gotta be the best question [CROSSTALK] 23:45 >> I left for last, it's the worst one. 23:46 >> The, the, aw. >> Yeah. 23:47 I'll make it best answer, then. >> What is the web design [INAUDIBLE]? 23:49 >> [LAUGH] That web thing, what is it? 23:52 >> [LAUGH] So what is it about design that you're 23:56 truly passionate about, I mean what is, what 23:58 is the thing that's, drives you now to 24:01 work on client projects and will continue to 24:04 drive you to work on projects in the future? 24:06 Now that's making the assumption I still am passionate. 24:09 Perhaps I'm just jaded and twisted and bitter. 24:11 >> Could be. 24:14 >> So that, that would be a real high to end the interview on. 24:15 >> Sure. >> Luckily I'm not. 24:17 [LAUGH] Luckily I'm still enthusiastic. 24:18 What is it about design? 24:21 I mean I'm not a hands on designer anymore. 24:22 I think that's an important thing to say. 24:24 I, I work with clients on a consultative basis. 24:25 I think what I love about, my job, and I've 24:30 always loved is, what we just talked about, is that it's 24:34 forever changing, there's always something new, there's always a new technique, 24:39 there's always something new to explore and to to challenge you. 24:43 And every client project 24:47 I get in, there's got some nuance to it that challenges me. 24:49 You know, it's got a, a, that ecommerce site I mentioned earlier. 24:53 Their average user was in their 80s. 24:57 80 years old, that was the average, you know, user. 25:01 And so, that had an amazing target 25:03 audience to work with, that created brilliant challenges. 25:06 Other times it's, there's some real, kind 25:08 of complexity and the technology that needs solving. 25:10 Or a design 25:14 challenge that I've never encountered before. 25:15 Even after nearly 20 years in web design, every project has got something new to it. 25:17 Whether it be some horrible politics within 25:23 the organization that I have to work around. 25:25 You know, it's that challenge that keeps me going. 25:28 And as soon as, as soon as the web becomes an established 25:32 industry, like I don't know, engineering or architecture, I'm out of here. 25:35 You know? 25:38 >> [LAUGH] >> That, I've lost 25:38 interest then. >> Of to sip drinks on the beach. 25:40 >> Yes. 25:43 Although because I've built a lifestyle business rather 25:43 than one with an exit strategy, I'm totally stuffed. 25:46 [LAUGH] I haven't planned a business like that. 25:48 But, you know, it's never too late to start. 25:51 [LAUGH] 25:53 >> Well, thanks for joining us, and, and for our members 25:53 that want to continue to follow you, where can they find you? 25:56 At the podcast, yes? 25:59 >> Yeah, I do a web design podcast at boagworld.com. 26:00 But I also 26:04 put out loads of blog posts as well. >> Mm-hm. 26:05 >> But, also, seriously, check out the stuff that I've done 26:07 at Treehouse as well, because I've, I've really enjoyed doing it. 26:10 It's been a brilliant couple of days doing that, 26:12 and hopefully there's some useful stuff in there, as well. 26:15 >> Absolutely. 26:17 Thank you so much for joining us, and thank you for 26:18 watching this episode of Treehouse Friends, we'll see you next time. 26:20 [MUSIC]. 26:23
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