By Egotist / /
2014 was the year that I moved from AKQA’s London office to lead the Technology team in our SF office, so I’ve learned quite a bit.
I’ve learned that to deliver outstanding work, technologists need to be tightly integrated with creatives and strategists, not treated as a service provider late in the delivery process. We’ve now updated our process, embedding creative technologists and engineers in the early concepting phase of a project. This has given technologists the same ownership of the products we create as the other disciplines, and saved time in catching technical issues early.
I’ve learned that clients have less and less tolerance for long-winded exercises that produce nothing but a fancy presentation deck. Instead, we now often use a number of small, cross-discipline teams to concept and prototype working software in close collaboration with the client, over the course of a single week. We’re still refining the process, but so far it has generated a huge amount of value for clients. And provides a pretty dynamic work environment.
I’ve learned that my team is ambitious and wants to develop as they succeed. So, I’m putting a clear career development structure in place that allows everyone to understand what each role in the Technology team entails and what they need to do to move into it. I’ve also learned to listen to the team more than perhaps I have in the past, so this process is more evolutionary than I’d initially thought it would be.
Mostly, I’ve learned that I love what I do more this year than I did last year, so I’m a pretty lucky guy.