Monday, 19 July 2010

Meet Sophie..

Hi, nice to meet you, I’m Sophie
*offers firm handshake and best smile*

Despite being told from all corners of the media, my parents, and almost all adult acquaintances that I would end up on top of a big pile of unemployed, living at home, graduates after finishing my UCL degree, I seem to have landed on my feet.

That is, I’m here, less than a month after finishing uni, being the ‘affiliate marketing officer’ (no less) for Red Button Design. If that wasn’t good enough for you I’m also being paid for it by the UCL Advances internship scheme. So take that scaremongering media.

Anyway enough about me- oh go on then just a little bit more-. I’m a history of art graduate who took philosophy as a subsidiary subject. I have a wide range of interests (art, music, travel, parties), am very ambitious and a teeny bit (read: a lot) competitive. I also want to work at something that I feel is worthwhile and that makes a positive contribution to the world. Then I can be a really, really smug adult.

So that’s what drew me to Red Button Design; a business that could improve the standard of living for many communities in the world, and at the same time make a profit. I was not at all enticed by the fact I might get to go to a party and meet Peter Jones (ok well it was at least the 5th reason on my list).

Now after all my gloating and celebrating at defying the unemployment odds, I have actually had some work to do. Tea-making it wasn’t. So far I’ve been drafting letters, making spreadsheets and mood boards, attending meetings with potential business collaborators and tweeting my progress. Who was it that said work is more fun than fun?

Unfortunately I can’t tell you entirely about the project that most of my energies are being directed towards. If we keep you in suspense it builds up the anticipation you see… BUT I can tell you that you will like it. Especially if you are a woman (or know one), who likes gorgeous things but also has ethical tendencies. Ooooh. Did I mention I’ve been contacting Angelina?

So I will leave you there, hanging on to the cliff of suspense, wondering what Midomo has to do with a luxury item. Meanwhile Amanda and I will go and get a cup of tea (not made by me).

Sophie x

Friday, 16 July 2010

Snapshot: July 2010

So the last post, June's Snapshot, was one of the most viewed posts I've ever written outside of the 12 Lessons Series. Who'd have thought you'd actually appreciate a bit of concrete info! Obliging as ever, I thought I'd make it a regular thing and see how long it takes you to get bored ;-)
Welcome to July's Snapshot...

Growing the Team
Spoilt for choice I have hired not one, but two new interns into the Red Button Family. Sophie Orbaum and Esme Jones are both fantastic UCL graduates poised to take over different parts of our sales and marketing efforts. Not exactly chosen for their propensity to be shy and retiring, I'll let them introduce themselves in due course!

Design and Build
Whilst awaiting delivery of our new units, design and build has turned into an operations and logistics mission relating to sales targets and the speed at which we are able to roll out in various regions/countries.. However, as ops & logistics is one of my least favourite things, it has also provided the opportunity for parallel fantasy-planning for our impending launch party! What can I say? Needs must on both accounts!

The Internets
Work has begun, not just on a new space for the blog, but a complete redesign of the site-that-never-really-was. Though, for convoluted and uninteresting reasons we have always based at, we've recently secured and for development. Big on ideas but strapped for time and resources, these are coming along very slowly indeed, so any web designers fancying a bit of pro bono work in return for love and beer/wine please do give us a shout! :-)

Sales and Marketing
Gosh this is an exciting subject at the moment! So, not only will you be able to buy a Midomo online this Christmas and donate it to a certified NGO of your choice, but we have a very sexy, top secret retail collaboration underway which .. well.. I can't say much (Sophie will kill me) but it's awesome. Really awesome.

Safety and Certification
Happy to say that following on from last month's hinting, we will be working with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine to test our new prototypes and corroborate the previous trials undertaken up in Scotland and, subsequent to winning the National Laboratory Services design award for environmental technology last year, we will also be benefiting from this exciting partnership to create a simple water-safety diagnostic test, suitable for use on site. Cool, huh?

Problem Solving
Well, James elected to remove last month's problem by getting too sick to work for a while. Oh yes, despite me clearly telling him he was not allowed to go away and get ill, he managed to get Malaria ... all of two weeks before having his thunder stolen by Cheryl Cole! Don't worry though, he was well looked after and is now on the mend - meaning that I will very shortly get to battle with temptation at the Apple Store after all..

I'm currently reading The Island by Aldous Huxley on the recommendation of one of my shareholders and I just can't believe I haven't read it before.. No excuses, it's amazing, get your hands on a copy now!

Professor Philip Zimbardo's RSA Animate contribution The Secret Powers of Time which looks at the way in which our individual perspectives of time not only affect our work, health and well-being but how, depending on which of the six "time zones" you live in, time also influences who we are as a person, how we view relationships and how we act in the world..

at Pants to Poverty trying to coax them into being an all singing, all dancing, blogging, tweeting, facebooking lot. Y'see what I did there? I'm worth every penny they're not paying me.. :)