Jake Kassan, Co-founder of MVMT on humble beginnings and growing a business to $80+ million in revenue in four years

December 5, 2017
00:0000:00

This is episode #53. And today’s guest is the Co-founder and CEO of MVMT pronounced as ‘movement’. MVMT are a global – fashion, watches and accessory brand for millennials, that has sold over 1.5 million products. 


 

After almost failing out of high school and dropping out of college, our guest started this brand at age 22 while he was $20,000 in debt. Four years later, his brand has grown to more than $80 million in revenue and 4 million social followers.

 

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • His first t-shirt business while still in school and his action steps getting that off the ground
  • Then, his rise and fall in selling rave lighting and accessories
  • His advice for growing a business from $0 to $1 million within 12 months
  • And how MVMT watches all started.

 

So If you’re someone that’s interested in designing a product and designing a thriving business around it, then this episode is for you.

I present to you … the resourceful, determined and inspiring ... Jake Kassan!

 


 

More on Jake Kassan can be found via the links below:

Jake’s personal website

MVMT website

Linkedin profile

Jake’s Twitter: @jakekassan

Jake’s Instagram: @jakekassan

MVMT on Instagram: @MVMT

MVMT on Facebook

 

Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.

 


 

Do you think style should break the bank?

If you’re like me and said no, then you’re in for a treat. MVMT are gifting listeners an exclusive 15% off all products with free shipping! Grab one of their premium watches and accessories - at an already radically fair price, plus take another 15% off at checkout.

Skip the stress that comes with parking at the shops then dealing with retail crowds – you can and grab a watch for yourself and all your loved ones. They make the perfect gift for men and women, and start at just $95.

Visit the exclusive link here with the discount applied: https://www.mvmt.com/GiantThinkers

Ayse Birsel on deconstructing and reconstructing to design the life you love

November 28, 2017
00:0000:00

Welcome to episode #52! Today’s guest is the Co-founder and Creative Director of Birsel + Seck, the award-winning design and innovation studio working with clients including Herman Miller, GE, Colgate-Palmolive, IKEA and Toyota.


 

She’s a highly experienced and sought after New York based designer. Is the creator of Design the Life You Love, a book and coursework that teaches designers and non-designers how to create a meaningful life using her design process, Deconstruction:Reconstruction™.

Fast Company identified her as one of the world’s most creative people and is on the Thinkers50 Radar List of the 30 management thinkers most likely to shape the future of organisations.

 

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • Her secret love for Karate
  • The most rewarding projects of her career – from toilet seats to car interiors to office spaces and furniture
  • How she handled the global financial crisis when clients no longer engaged her for work
  • And what a meaningful future really means.


If you are someone that’s ever been interested in using a design process to design the life you love, then this episode is for you.


I present to you ... the optimistic, imaginative and purpose driven ... Ayse Birsel!

 


 

More on Ayse can be found via the links below:

Aysebirsel.com

Birsel + Seck website

Design The Life You Love – Book

Linkedin profile

Twitter: @AyseBirselSeck

Instagram: @designthelifeyoulove

 

Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.

 


 

Interested in becoming a developer?

All me to introduce … Treehouse! They are an online technology school, offering courses in web design and coding – from HTML, CSS, PHP to JavaScript, Python and iOS – in the space of web, mobile, and game development, taught by a team of in-house, expert teachers.

If you head to GiantThinkers.com/TreeHouse – they’re giving the Giant Thinkers community a 7-day free trial so you can try it out with no commitment.

On top of that, if you’re happy with the trial, and thereafter, continue learning on TreeHouse -- let me know and I will personally give the first 5 students a one hour Skype call coaching session, each -- for free.

So if you’d like to learn how to code, are interested in becoming a developer and are after the skills to get a job as one, pop over to GiantThinkers.com/TreeHouse

Lewis Howes on the story you tell yourself, the power of forgiveness and how to break through barriers

November 22, 2017
00:0000:00

Giants, welcome to episode #51! Today’s guest is a former professional football player who suffered a career-ending injury, and is now an international lifestyle entrepreneur, New York Times bestselling author, has a consistently top 100 podcast in the world and is the founder of a multi-million dollar online media company. In this episode he shares the struggles of negativity and loneliness, and how he re-discovered his vision and identity.



Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • His journey from anger, resentment and loneliness to a more peaceful, liberated place

  • The masks that men learn to wear and how these can damage effective communication and in turn, relationships

  • We spoke a lot about our personal identity versus our personal brand

  • And … how we can all improve our emotional health.


If you or someone you care for has been struggling to break through internal barriers and struggling to forgive, then this episode is for you.


I present to you ... the giant in mind, body and spirit ... Lewis Howes!

 


 

More on Lewis can be found via the links below:

lewishowes.com

Linkedin profile 

Facebook page

Twitter: @LewisHowes

Instagram: @LewisHowes

Lewis's Youtube Channel

Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.

 


 

Interested in becoming a developer?

All me to introduce … Treehouse! They are an online technology school, offering courses in web design and coding – from HTML, CSS, PHP to JavaScript, Python and iOS – in the space of web, mobile, and game development, taught by a team of in-house, expert teachers.

If you head to GiantThinkers.com/TreeHouse – they’re giving the Giant Thinkers community a 7-day free trial so you can try it out with no commitment.

On top of that, if you’re happy with the trial, and thereafter, continue learning on TreeHouse -- let me know and I will personally give the first 5 students a one hour Skype call coaching session, each -- for free.

So if you’d like to learn how to code, are interested in becoming a developer and are after the skills to get a job as one, pop over to GiantThinkers.com/TreeHouse

 

 

Dr. Jim Kokkinakis, expert optometrist on managing dry eyes and computer vision syndrome

November 6, 2017
00:0000:00

This is episode number 50! Thank you all for your support on the podcast journey so far. It has been a privilege to bring you 50 guests since starting mid-2015. In this episode we dig deep into an often overlooked topic, an area most of us take for granted, which is our eyes.


 

Our guest has been a top-practising optometrist for over 3 decades, and is one of Australia’s most experienced eye doctors. Currently an Adjunct Senior Lecturer at the University of New South Wales, he has also lectured internationally on advanced contact lens fitting, dry eye treatment and computer vision syndrome.

He was one of Australia's first optometrists to be qualified in Ocular Therapeutics and is currently an active member of The International Society of Contact Lens Specialists, The American Academy of Optometry and Optometry Australia to name a few. He also runs a very popular practice in Sydney’s CBD on Market Street called The Eye Practice.

 

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • How to manage the increasing epidemic of dry eyes, especially with our heavy use of digital tech
  • The importance of meibomian glands, and Meibomian Gland Dysfunction (something I personally suffer from – you’ll hear about that in detail)
  • The misconception and dangerous overuse of eye drop products
  • And how to overcome blue light damage and eye strain (a big one for designers and anyone using a computer daily!)

If you’ve ever been interested in eye health and what to do to take care of our precious eyes, this is for you.

 

I present to you … the knowledgeable, easy-going and super dedicated... Dr Jim Kokkinakis!

 


 

More on Dr. Jim can be found via the links below:

Theeyepractice.com.au/Jim-Kokkinakis

Linkedin profile

Twitter.com/theeyepractice

Instagram.com/theeyepractice

The Eye Practice

Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.

 


 

Interested in becoming a developer?

All me to introduce … Treehouse! They are an online technology school, offering courses in web design and coding – from HTML, CSS, PHP to JavaScript, Python and iOS – in the space of web, mobile, and game development, taught by a team of in-house, expert teachers.

If you head to GiantThinkers.com/TreeHouse – they’re giving the Giant Thinkers community a 7-day free trial so you can try it out with no commitment.

On top of that, if you’re happy with the trial, and thereafter, continue learning on TreeHouse -- let me know and I will personally give the first 5 students a one hour Skype call coaching session, each -- for free.

So if you’d like to learn how to code, are interested in becoming a developer and are after the skills to get a job as one, pop over to GiantThinkers.com/TreeHouse

Co-Founder and Principal of Meld Studios; Janna DeVylder on the materiality of service design

October 11, 2017
00:0000:00

This is episode #49! Our guest today is a Co-Founder and Principal at Meld Studios; an Australian design firm specialising in Service Design and Interaction Design. Her foundational beginnings stems from graduating with Honors in Psychology, Masters in Social Sciences, and starting in Information Architecture. Her career has been focused on humanising products and services down to the most detailed of interactions within them. She is an incredible woman, a mentor to me and many others, and I’m excited for you all to hear this.


Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • Learning sign language from the age of 3 years old
  • How being inquisitive, feeling uncertain yet excited helped her navigate student-life and her early career
  • The definitions of design thinking, human centered design and service design
  • Brain activity versus gut activity
  • Her internal dialogue when faced with rejection and so much more.

If you’ve ever been fascinated by the collision of human behaviour and design, this episode is for you.

I present to you … the warm-hearted, generous and thoughtful ... Janna DeVylder!


More on Janna can be found via the links below:

Medium.com/@jdevylder

Meldstudios.com.au

Linkedin profile

Twitter.com/jdevylder

Instagram.com/jcybill

Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.


Want my audiobook for free?

It’s been one whole year since releasing my second book ‘How To Get A Mentor As A Designer’. I released it in October 2016. As a one-year anniversary gift for you all, if you haven’t purchased the book but would like to, buy the paperback or ebook version by the end of October 2017, and I will send you the audiobook for free.

Head to Gettingamentor.com, take a screen grab of your receipt, email me at Ram@GiantThinkers.com and I will respond with the audio book version for you on the house.

CEO of Publicis Worldwide (AUS & NZ) Andrew ‘Billy’ Baxter on leading an organisation with 450+ people and 60+ major clients

September 14, 2017
00:0000:00

Welcome to episode #48! Our guest is the Chairman of Publicis Communications Australia and New Zealand, one of the largest communication agency groups in the region. He is also CEO of Publicis Worldwide Australia and NZ, with businesses specialising in advertising, digital, PR, CRM, activation, mobile, brand strategy and design. He leads over 450 people in an organisation that has over 60 major clients.


Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • How he interacts with employees to unlock the best out of them
  • Advice on how to operate under pressure
  • His view on being a leader and how he leads such a massive amount of people
  • And why everything ties back to having a clear vision.

If you’re someone that aims to move into leadership in some capacity, this is for you. I’m certain that you’ll learn a ton -- from a person of this calibre.


I present to you … the highly respected, mover and shaker ... Andrew Baxter aka Billy!

 


More on Andrew 'Billy' Baxter can be found via the links below:

Billy's website

Linkedin profile

Twitter: @AndrewBaxter3

Instagram: @AndrewBaxter3

Publicis Australia website

Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.


Want to see a glimpse into my USA tour?

I’ve been putting extra effort into my YouTube channel, posting vlogs of my last USA tour. They include my visit to places such as VISA, CreativeLive, AIGA, VaynerMedia and Squarespace.

Watch them on Youtube.com/RamCastillo

Oscar Trimboli, specialist coach in deep listening on how to listen beyond the words

August 25, 2017
00:0000:00

This is episode #47! Our guest is a specialist coach in deep listening. He's helped many individuals, to massive corporations; from Google to Microsoft to Universal.



The most powerful thing I personally got out of this interview was learning how to uncover meaning in dialogue from what’s said versus what’s unsaid.

 

Some of the topics we covered include:

  • How to listen deeply using the 5 levels of listening
  • The ideal ‘speaking versus listening’ ratio
  • Shadow listening styles to be aware of
  • And practical techniques to productively move the dialogue forward

 

This is a must listen for anyone that wants to truly improve the way they communicate, not just professionally (with your colleagues and clients) but personally (with your family, friends and loved ones).


I present to you … the calm, kind and wise ... Oscar Trimboli!

 


More on Oscar can be found via the links below:

Oscar's website

Linkedin profile

Twitter: @oscartrimboli

Instagram: @oscartrimboli

Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.


Want to see what it’s like when I’m on tour?

I’ve been putting extra effort into my YouTube channel, posting vlogs of my last USA tour, including my visit to places such as the AIGA headquarters, VaynerMedia and the Squarespace office. 9 episodes are up as of right now. Plenty more on the way.

Watch them on Youtube.com/RamCastillo

Charbel Zeaiter, Co-founder at Academy Xi on UX design processes, VR, AR and the future of design

June 27, 2017
00:0000:00

This is episode #46! Our guest is the Co-founder and Chief Experience Officer at Academy Xi. They teach groups and individuals in the areas of design and tech – but with a unique positioning and offering. Academy Xi specialise in teaching newly emerging disciplines such as virtual reality design, augmented reality design, service design and of course UX design as well.



As you can imagine, this gets me going because they aim to address the upcoming skills gap in technology and give students the practical skills to pursue new career paths. Actually, some exciting news that’s come out very recently is that Academy Xi secured $2.25 million dollars in a series A round funding, and they’ve only been around for a little over a year. Very impressive growth.

Now back to our guest, he started his design career in 1998. He’s helped iconic brands, eager startups and a broad range of organisations improve their ability to create long lasting relationships with their customers, by combining his belief in human centred design, research and collaboration.

 

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • The danger of assumption
  • Advice to anyone creating a product, service or a brand
  • Designing value systems
  • The process of elimination when solving complex problems
  • His Slideshare presentation titled ‘The Future of everything’ which has been viewed almost 400,000 times
  • And naturally, we spoke about where he feels design is heading.


I present to you … the bright, passionate and down to earth ... Charbel Zeaiter!

 


More on Charbel Zeaiter can be found via the links below:

Linkedin profile

Facebook profile

Twitter: @charbelxcharbel

Instagram: @Charbelxcharbel

Velvet Onion website

Academy Xi


Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers P
odcast on iTunes.


Need video work done? Filming, editing or both?

Checkout Grand Rapids based, Creative Agency, Carbon Stories. Friends of mine who I personally used for my video vlogs during my 2016 USA tour. They service your needs for video work and photography.

Take a look at their work or to reach out to them: CarbonStories.us

Dr. Carmel Harrington, sleep specialist for over 20 years on how to achieve better sleep

June 7, 2017
00:0000:00

Welcome to episode #45! Our guest is a former lawyer and educator who has a PHD in Sleep Medicine from Sydney University and consults with companies and educational institutions all over the world on sleep health. She’s an internationally recognised Doctor that has been working in the world of sleep for nearly 20 years.



She’s the Managing Director of Sleep for Health and an Honorary Research Fellow at the Children's Hospital Westmead. She’s also a founding member of the Sleep Health Foundation and a member of the Australasian Sleep Association. On top of that, she’s written two books ‘The Sleep Diet’ and ‘The Complete Guide To A Good Night's Sleep’.

 

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • The stages of a complete sleep cycle and how each affect our mind and bodies
  • How much sleep we actually need and why
  • The differences of sleep requirements for males versus females
  • How to naturally achieve better sleep
  • How to create a sleep plan
  • Her thoughts around power naps
  • What it means for those who snore, sleep talk, sleep walk or jolt suddenly, and plenty more.


I present to you … the warm, generous and intelligent ...  Dr. Carmel Harrington!

 


More on Dr. Carmel Harrington can be found via the links below:

Dr. Carmel’s website: sleepforhealth.net.au

Dr. Carmel’s LinedIn: click here

Blog post by Dr. Carmel: Are you getting enough sleep? 


Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers P
odcast on iTunes.


Want to improve your life through better sleep?

I want to introduce you to a company that I use and love because they've helped me improve my sleep. They're called A.H. Beard and have over 115 years’ experience in the bedding business. A.H. Beard is on a mission to improve people’s lives through better sleep.

Partnering with leading sleep experts like Dr Carmel (who is actually today's guest), A.H. Beard is the place to go when you want the answers to those niggling sleep issues!

I highly encourage you to jump onto their website AHBeard.com, sign up for their next free 6 week sleep challenge or explore their Sleep Coach section where you can find up to date articles and expert advice on everything sleep related!

Head to AHBeard.com

Musician Rachel Claudio on building electronic performances and the transcending power of sound

May 13, 2017
00:0000:00

Welcome to episode #44! Our guest is a European-based, Australian-born artist, composer, singer and producer. She uses electronic instruments and technology to create and perform masterpieces in real time, and has performed all over the world. She recently delivered a moving TEDx talk titled ‘how to translate the feeling into sound’ and is also a freelance lecturer in Creativity at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts.


 

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • The various experiences of the composer versus the listener
  • The best tools she recommends for those wanting to experiment with electronic instruments
  • Her cover of Outkast’s 'Hey Ya' thats surpassed well over 2.5 million views
  • The time she took the plunge at 24 years old to live in Europe and the journey that followed dedicating everything to her art
  • And the process of simultaneously performing while envisioning the composition ahead of time.


I present to you, the stunning, soulful and exceptionally talented ... Rachel Claudio!

  



More on Rachel Claudio can be found via the links below:

Rachel's Facebook: click here

Rachel's Twitter: @RachelClaudio

Rachel's Instagram: @Claudiography

TEDx Perth Talk: click here

Full version of 'The Saddest ‘Hey Ya’ You’ll Ever Hear': click here

Rachel's Soundcloud: click here

Equipboard: http://equipboard.com

Ableton Live music software: https://www.ableton.com/en/live

 
Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers P
odcast on iTunes.


Are you a designer or creative struggling to navigate your way?

If you haven’t already, I invite you to sign up for the mailing list, where you get occasional emails from me on new episodes, articles and events.

But if email isn’t your thing, add me on Instagram or snapchat, my handle is @TheGiantThinker -- it’s the fastest way to reach me and see my day-to-day activities.

NOSHU founder Rachel Bajada on the reality of decision making, starting a business and creating a food product

April 8, 2017
00:0000:00

It’s a pleasure to have your company on episode #43! Our guest is the founder of NOSHU – Australia’s first food brand to be truly sugar free. Time Out Sydney included her as one of the top Forty Under 40.



What’s interesting is that she started her degree in Food Science, then did a pivot to Design (Visual Communications), she completed that, worked in the industry for a number of years, then moved to France for a while, and returned back to Australia to create the business. Her family history of diabetes and her struggle to find delicious, sugar-free foods became the catalyst to create her hero product, a healthy donut.

The International Anti-Additive Awards recently recognised her company NOSHU as one of the Asia Pacific winners for the 2016 Best of the year award.

The judging panel included Michelin Star Chefs, Nutritionists, Dieticians, Professors and Food Editors. Criteria involved presentation, taste, production and cooking process.


Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • Advice when struggling to decide to stop pursuing something or to keep going
  • What surprised her most when launching a food product
  • Where to begin when in the research and development phase of making a food product
  • Cautions to be aware of before starting any business, and plenty more.


I present to you, the fun loving, hardworking and determined … Rachel Bajada!

 



More on Rachel and NOSHU can be found via the links below:

Rachel's LinkedIn: click here

Rachel's Twitter: @RachelBajada

Rachel's Instagram: @MadameRach

NOSHU's Twitter: @NoshuFoods

NOSHU's Instagram: @NoshuFoods

NOSHU website: Noshu.com.au

 


Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers P
odcast on iTunes.


Are you a designer or creative struggling to navigate your way?

If you haven’t already, I invite you to sign up for the mailing list, where you get occasional emails from me on new episodes, articles and events.

But if email isn’t your thing, add me on Instagram or snapchat, my handle is @TheGiantThinker -- it’s the fastest way to reach me and see my day-to-day activities.

Elle Luna on protecting your passion, interpreting your dreams and the practicality of transition periods

March 8, 2017
00:0000:00

It’s a pleasure to have your company on episode #42! Our guest is a formally trained designer who previously worked at IDEO and with startups including Mailbox, Medium, and Uber – then a few years ago she made a brave pivot and transitioned into spending more time painting, writing and creating. She is the author of a book many of you may have or heard of, titled; 'The Crossroads of Should and Must'. 



Side note here, I suggest you watch one of the many talks she’s done, in particular the one titled ‘The importance of doing what you love’ it’s on vimeo.com. I highly, highly recommend it. She also runs a textile venture, the Bulan Project, a collaboration between designers and master batik artists in Bali.


Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • The job vs the career vs the calling

  • Her winding road of transition (even being denied admission from every law school she applied for)

  • How to protect your passion

  • The importance of play

  • And techniques to interpret our own dreams.


I present to you, the deeply captivating, thoughtful and tranquil … Elle Luna!

 

 



More on Elle can be found via the link below:

LinkedIn: click here

Twitter: @ElleLuna

Instagram: @ElleLuna

Personal website: ElleLuna.com

The Bulan Project: click here

Elle's book: The Crossroads of Should and Must


Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers P
odcast on iTunes.


Are you a designer or creative struggling to navigate your way?

If you haven’t already, I invite you to sign up for the mailing list, where you get occasional emails from me on new episodes, articles and events.

But if email isn’t your thing, add me on Instagram or snapchat, my handle is @TheGiantThinker -- it’s the fastest way to reach me and see my day-to-day activities.

Ashleigh Axios, Former Creative Director of The White House on cultivating brand values and lessons learned along the way

February 26, 2017
00:0000:00

Welcome to episode #41! Our guest today is a graduate of RISD and has flourished into many amazing things. A few titles under her humble belt include her being the former Creative Director of The White House, currently Design Exponent at Automattic – side note here: Automattic are the people behind WordPress.com, WooCommerce, Jetpack, Simplenote, Longreads, VaultPress, Gravatar, and many more online, open source publishing tools. Our guest is also an Editorial Board Member for Design Observer, National Board Member for AIGA and an International Speaker. 


 

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • The responsibilities behind the role when CD at the White House
  • Advice for cultivating an entire institutions brand values
  • Tips for rapport building and networking with practical examples
  • The importance of taking time off during transition periods and much, much more.


I present to you, my good friend; the talented and delightfully calm  … Ashleigh Axios!

 



More on Ashleigh can be found via the link below:

LinkedIn: linkedin.com/in/AshleighAxios

Twitter: @AshleighAxios

Instagram: @AshleighAxios

Automattic website: automattic.com

Personal website: ashleighaxios.com

Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.


Are you a designer or creative struggling to navigate your way?

If you haven’t already, I invite you to sign up for the mailing list, where you get occasional emails from me on new episodes, articles and events.

But if email isn’t your thing, add me on Instagram or snapchat, my handle is @TheGiantThinker -- it’s the fastest way to reach me and see my day-to-day activities.

Steve Frykholm, design legend of Herman Miller on navigating a career and dealing with differences and failed attempts

February 2, 2017
00:0000:00

Welcome to episode #40! Our guest today is truly a Graphic Design legend. An icon of the industry. He’s had a 45-year stint at Herman Miller, and was in fact hired as their first ever Graphic Designer in 1970, working his way up to Creative Director and now still with them as an advisor. His work is part of the permanent collection at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and is also an AIGA Medalist.


This interview was recorded in person at Grand Rapids, West Michigan in December last year. Take note, there were a few photographs sent to me by today’s guest which complement a particular segment of the interview – it’s a rare Herman Miller artefact. So be sure to take a look at it on this episodes blog post at GiantThinkers.com.

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • The two types of internal politics
  • Advice for dealing with difficult people and differences of opinion
  • What makes poster design so powerful
  • And where to move towards in this ever-changing professional landscape.


I present to you, a dear friend and the ultimate veteran … Steve Frykholm!



More on Steve can be found via the link below:

AIGA 2010 Medalist article: www.aiga.org/medalist-stevefrykholm

Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.


Struggling to decide which email marketing platform to use?

Are you a freelancer, work full-time and have a side hustle, or run a large company? MailerLite are the best when it comes to affordable email marketing software. They currently have 200,000+ customers in over 72 countries, including BMW, GoPro, FWA, Typeform and IKEA. A testament to their world-class platform.

MailerLite offer a free plan for up to 1000 subscribers – with no expiry date. You can use all the features, including drag and drop, autoresponders, landing pages, tracking and the mobile app.

Click here to start.

Debbie Millman, host of Design Matters on the cross-pollination of craft and going beyond operational excellence

January 5, 2017
00:0000:00

Welcome to episode #39! As the first episode of 2017 it’s only fitting that I wish you all a very happy new year, and that we kick off the show with a jaw-dropping guest. She is an icon and a pioneer in the design, education and podcasting world.


Named “one of the most influential designers working today” by Graphic Design USA, our guest is also an author of six books, a brand strategist – formerly the President of the design division at Sterling Brands for 20 years, and host of the podcast Design Matters; the first and longest running podcast about design. She has interviewed nearly 300 design luminaries and cultural commentators.

And when you thought it couldn’t get any more juicy, she is also the Chair and Co-founder of the Masters Program in Branding at the School of Visual Arts in New York City.

Speaking of, this was recorded in NYC in November last year and am excited to finally let this one out of the bag.

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • How to deal with challenges and heartbreak on our career path
  • Advice to designers who are struggling to decide which discipline to focus on
  • The difference between a good designer and a great one
  • Practical tips for those wanting to start a podcast, and plenty more.


I present to you, the deeply thoughtful, wise and compassionate … Debbie Millman!

 



More on Debbie can be found via the links below:

Twitter: @DebbieMillman
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/deborahmillman
Website: Debbiemillman.com
Debbie's all-time delights of NYC: Debbiemillman.com/new_york_city.html
Design Matters Podcast: Debbiemillman.com/designmatters


Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers P
odcast on iTunes.


Struggling to decide which email marketing platform to use?

Are you a freelancer, work full-time and have a side hustle, or run a large company? MailerLite are the best when it comes to affordable email marketing software. They currently have 200,000+ customers in over 72 countries, including BMW, GoPro, FWA, Typeform and IKEA. A testament to their world-class platform.

MailerLite offer a free plan for up to 1000 subscribers – with no expiry date. You can use all the features, including drag and drop, autoresponders, landing pages, tracking and the mobile app.

Click here to start.

Steve Babcock, VaynerMedia’s Chief Creative Officer on ideation, intuition and decision making

December 20, 2016
00:0000:00

Giants, welcome to episode #38! I’m officially back home in Sydney, Australia, after a whirlwind 2-month USA tour as part of launching my second book; how to get a mentor as a designer. I couldn’t of done it without the AIGA chapters that hosted me and of course all of you that participated. In short, I visited 15 cities, delivered 20 talks and met over 1500 attendees. Thank you from the bottom of my heart, it was truly an honor – do checkout my instagram for all the pictures of that journey, my handle is @TheGiantThinker.


Today’s guest is the Chief Creative Officer of VaynerMedia – an advertising, social-media led marketing and communications agency founded by Gary Vaynerchuk with over 800 employees and counting. We know a lot about Gary, but to hear from the CCO of VaynerMedia is a rare gem, so rare in fact that this guest has never been interviewed on any podcast, ever. I’m truly grateful to be the first and I know you’re going to find this both informative and entertaining.

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • Advice on how to generate better ideas faster
  • Tips on which area of design or creativity to specialise in
  • Insights on becoming a creative director
  • How to improve our intuition
  • And what it’s like working for the hustle king himself, Gary Vee.

I present to you, the man leading VaynerMedia’s creative team of titanic proportions … Steve Babcock!


More on Steve can be found via the links below:

Twitter: @stevehappens
Snapchat: @babcosnaps
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/stevehappens
Website: SteveHappens.com


Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers P
odcast on iTunes.


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Julie Anixter, AIGA’s Executive Director on adapting, finding fulfilment and overcoming fear as a designer

November 29, 2016
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Hey Giants welcome to episode number 37 – I’m recording this from my hotel room in Manhattan, NYC as I’m two-thirds through USA speaking tour. The podcast lives on – no excuses. I still have around 8 events to go across South Carolina, Kansas, West Michigan and Seattle. All part of launching my second book; How to get a mentor as a designer, guaranteed.


If you’re struggling to find a mentor, this book was written for you – you can grab it at GettingaMentor.com – it’s available in paperback, ebook and audiobook versions.

Another quick announcement, if you’re a Snapchat or Instagram stories user, I’m doing my best to document my day to day journey on those platforms, so if you’d like a sneak peek into my travels, you can add me on my handle: TheGiantThinker.

Now, to introduce today’s guest, she is the Executive Director of AIGA – the American professional association for design. She is known for her passion and ability to bring big ideas to big audiences, through her hybrid capabilities as an experience designer, educator and practicing innovator. But as you’ll hear in this interview, she encompasses all those things and more.

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • Advice to those struggling to find meaning and fulfilment in their design career
  • How to deal with fear
  • Ways to improve diversity and inclusion
  • And the number question that has helped her innovate.

I present to you … the multi-faceted, warm-hearted, Julie Anixter!


More on Julie can be found via the links below:

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/janixter
Twitter: @JulieAnixter
AIGA: http://www.aiga.org


Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers P
odcast on iTunes.


Do you want to cut the guess work, see the blind spots and succeed faster?

I invite you take a look at my latest book 'How to get a mentor as a designer, guaranteed' – you can even get the first 50 pages as a PDF and in audio format for free if you want to know more about it first before purchasing. Click here to check it out!

Dominic Walsh, Managing Director at Landor on better leadership and business meeting creativity

November 12, 2016
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G’day Giants you are listening to episode number 36 – as I’m recording this I’m about one-third through my 2-month USA speaking tour. So far have covered Las Vegas, LA, San Fran, Jacksonville, Orlando and even a side trip to Mexico. I still have New York, South Carolina, Kansas, West Michigan and Seattle to visit. All part of launching my second book; How to get a mentor as a designer, guaranteed. The full list of my tour can be seen on GettingaMentor.com click the events page and if I’m my visiting your city or am nearby – please come along, I’d really love to see you there.


I’m also doing my best to document my day to day journey via Snapchat and Instagram stories, so if you’d like a sneak peek into my travels, you can add me on my handle: @TheGiantThinker

Now, to introduce today’s guest, he is the Managing Director of Landor, Australia. He’s had over 20 years experience in marketing, branding, and communications. He started his career in advertising with Clemenger BBDO, then McCann-Erickson where his clients included Unilever, Nestle, and Bacardi. He’s also held leadership positions at Blue Marlin and Interbrand.

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • Advice on becoming a great leader
  • Tips on managing staff
  • How to better commercialise innovative ideas
  • And how brands can be more agile

I present to you … the highly proficient and modest, Dominic Walsh!


More on Dominic can be found via the links below:

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dominic-walsh-aa06354
Landor: http://landor.com/offices/sydney

 

Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.


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David Lee, Chief Creative Officer at Squarespace on design portfolios, how to stand out and knowing your north star

November 2, 2016
00:0000:00

Hey Giants welcome to episode number 35 – as I’m recording and releasing this, I’m actually in California – well and truly settled into my 2-month USA speaking tour with a side trip to Mexico as well. But for the most part, I’ll be speaking in various cities from the West coast to the East and many places in between. All part of launching my second book; How to get a mentor as a designer, guaranteed. The full list of my tour can be seen on GettingaMentor.com click the events page and if I’m my visiting your city or am nearby – please come along, I’d really love to see you there. 


Now for those of you that were at the Annual AIGA Conference hosted at The Mirage in Las Vegas, congratulations for attending, investing your time and making the event such a huge success. It was my first time at an AIGA conference and I’m sure you can all agree that it was buzzing with energy and inspiration. And for those that attended my 3-hr workshop, titled Win The Job You Want – thank you for your curiosity and engagement, it will be an event I will always remember.

Alrighty, let’s get this episode underway… our guest is the Chief Creative Officer at Squarespace, and has been there for almost 4 years. Prior to that he’s held Creative Director leadership positions at TBWA, Wieden + Kennedy and AKQA. If I read his long list of accolades and awards, we’d be here for hours, but his recognition spans broad and deep -- from Cannes, to One Show, D&AD and Webby.

What I’m sure you’ll all appreciate is that his passion lies in telling compelling stories at the intersection of product, design and marketing. He’s masterminded two Super Bowl commercials, led the successful launches of Squarespace Logo and Squarespace 7, and worked with clients including Nike, Nokia, Microsoft and Xbox.

Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • How to standout when showing your portfolio
  • What it really is to be a creative director
  • How we can present and sell our ideas better
  • And his advice for getting in touch with Creative Directors

I present to you … the super enlightening and honest, David Lee!


More on David can be found via the links below:

Website: https://dmklee.com
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/dmklee
Instagram: @dmklee
Twitter: @dmklee

Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.


Do you hate having that awkward conversation with your clients about pending payments they need to make?

I highly recommend you checkout Freshbooks. The #1 cloud-based, invoicing software for small businesses. Especially if you’re a freelancer. 5 million people already use FreshBooks to painlessly send invoices & estimates, track time and capture expense receipts. Thankfully, they automates late payment email reminders too, so you can spend less time chasing payments and more time working your magic.

Tina Roth-Eisenberg, Founder of Creative mornings, aka swiss-miss, said “it saves me a huge amount of time.” Forbes said it is “Incredibly user friendly”.

FreshBooks is offering a month of unrestricted use to all Giant Thinkers listeners, totally free right now.

To claim your free month, go to FreshBooks.com/Giant and enter Giant Thinkers in the “How Did You Hear About Us?” section.

Russell James, Victoria’s Secret & Vogue photographer on creative discipline, persistence, adapting and mentors

October 12, 2016
00:0000:00

Episode #34 is now up! I interviewed an award-winning, highly-acclaimed photographer who has been a big part of the photography world for over 20 years. A renowned Vogue cover photographer (amongst many other magazine) and the main photographer for Victoria’s Secret, he has worked with the likes of Scarlett Johansson, Bill Clinton, Halle Berry, Rihanna, Tyra Banks, Giselle Bündchen, Naomi Campbell, Heidi Klum, Adriana Lima, and more!


Some of the topics we spoke about include:

  • How he stayed in-front and relevant as an originally film-based photographer when the digital age exploded
  • Photographing Tyra Banks as the first African American woman on the cover of Sports Illustrated
  • And why crafting your own version of “turning up” is the secret to achieving anything.


Introducing, the incredibly talented and humble … Mr Russell James!


More on Russell can be found via the links below:

Website: http://russelljames.com
Instagram: @RussellJames
Twitter: @NomadRJ

Subscribe to The Giant Thinkers Podcast on iTunes.


Do you hate having that awkward conversation with your clients about pending payments they need to make?

I highly recommend you checkout Freshbooks. The #1 cloud-based, invoicing software for small businesses. Especially if you’re a freelancer. 5 million people already use FreshBooks to painlessly send invoices & estimates, track time and capture expense receipts. Thankfully, they automates late payment email reminders too, so you can spend less time chasing payments and more time working your magic.

Tina Roth-Eisenberg, Founder of Creative mornings, aka swiss-miss, said “it saves me a huge amount of time.” Forbes said it is “Incredibly user friendly”.

FreshBooks is offering a month of unrestricted use to all Giant Thinkers listeners, totally free right now.

To claim your free month, go to FreshBooks.com/Giant and enter Giant Thinkers in the “How Did You Hear About Us?” section.