The Bureau Briefing

The Bureau Briefing

The Bureau Briefing is a podcast by the Bureau of Digital, an organization dedicated to giving digital professionals the support system they never had. Each episode, we talk to a member of our community doing awesome, inspiring things.

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    Episode 099: Wrestling Digital at WWE

    We all know how important customers are to the digital experience. At the WWE, those customers are the fans. Joe Lalley, Experience Design Leader, Digital Transformation at PwC, entered the ring of World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) as the Vice President of Digital Products and Operations. There, he led digital teams to deliver many different products across many different platforms.

    Joe joins us to talk about this exciting time in his life, and how WWE helped shape how he approaches digital today. Sharing Vince McMahon’s same fan-first perspective, Joe engaged customers both online and offline—in concession stand lines, inside the Superdome and at various other touch points to really get to know fans. Hear his advice for getting close to your customers and why it’s always important to treat each day like your first day on the job.

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    Episode 098: The Business Value of Design

    Not so long ago, design was viewed as aesthetics, a nice-to-have in the world of business. With the rise of Apple and other enormously successful design-centric organizations, design has claimed its rightful throne. Today, design is recognized as a powerful business differentiator. From customer satisfaction and loyalty to revenue, valuation, time to market and more, design has clear bottom-line benefits.

    As the Director of Design Education at InVision, Leah Buley has a front-row seat to the business impacts of design. A self-described data nerd, Leah and the team at InVision have just released The New Design Frontier, the largest design maturity study to date. Spanning 2,200 companies across 24 industries and 77 countries, the report explores the five levels of design maturity, and how companies can create better business outcomes with design. Leah joins us to walk us through the report, share some “aha” moments and offer some insights to use at your own organization.

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    Episode 097: From DPM to Partner: Pursuing Your Passion

    Nearly nine years ago, Nora Lahl left print production at a traditional agency to venture into the world of digital. Signing on with Lightburn, a Milwaukee-based web design and digital marketing agency, she saw the need for a move from a focus on projects to a focus on client services and client relationships. Stretching outside her job description, she went to work fulfilling that need.

    Today, Nora is a partner at Lightburn. After nearly a decade building relationships with clients and investing in Lightburn’s success, she knows a great deal about what works and what doesn’t. Nora joins us to talk about her journey from print to digital, how project managers can level up to business leaders and what it takes to go after and formalize an executive role.

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    Episode 096: 2019 State of the Industry

    About two months ago, we invited digital shops to help us shine a light on market trends, by sharing business conditions in 2018 and expectations for 2019. Nearly 170 shops responded, sharing a general consensus that business was good in 2018 with healthy revenue growth, solid employee efficiency results and strong profits. But there were some unexpected findings on how generalists did compared to specialists and different characteristics that had some shops growing much faster than others.

    Thanks to our partner, Promethean Research, we were able to dig deeper into the data and collect insights across many key performance indicators for our annual State of the Industry Report. Nick Petroski, Managing Director at Promethean Research, joins us to talk about what the research revealed, a few surprises and where the industry is headed.

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    Episode 095: Mark van Leeuwen

    Each day, we fire up app upon app upon app, going through the motions to create and organize our work and business in meaningful ways. Trouble is, all of that work takes a tremendous amount of time and effort. It can lead to a culture of chaos, leaving people frustrated when they can’t find things, align teams or projects or benchmark data to make good decisions.

    Mark van Leeuwen, CEO of VOGSY, has been working in projects his entire life. He knows how complex professional services can be, and how difficult it can be to create change. Mark joins us to share insights gathered from working with many, many professional services organizations, and talk about some of the ways technology can ease our pain.

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    Episode 094: Kianosh Pourian: Empathy, Acquisition & Intuition

    Looking back over the past few years, some have a tidy, linear career path. Others’ professional journeys are a series of unexpected twists and turns. Kianosh Pourian is a technologist with 20 years of experience in the web development industry. After working at Staples for over eight years, Kianosh set out on his own—right in the midst of the great financial crisis.

    He found success with his own consulting firm, went through a merger and then his new company experienced a lull in the pipeline. Never expecting an offer for acquisition at that exact moment in time, that’s exactly what happened. With the deal inked, Kianosh went from an organization of seven people to being part a 150-plus company. Months later, the office Kianosh called home was shuttered.

    Throughout this rollercoaster ride, Kianosh has stayed true to founding principles. Before being acquired, Kianosh’s company didn’t have a vision statement. It had one word, and that word was “empathy.” In many ways, he’s come full circle, back to the desire to venture forth and build new things. Kianosh joins us to talk about the lessons life has to teach us and how it’s always best to go with your intuition.

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    Episode 093: The Reluctant Leader

    Margaret Lee, Director of UX Community & Culture at Google, began her career before the Internet was really a thing. After majoring in architecture, she decided she didn’t want to be an architect, then stumbled into technology by accident. As she describes it, her career has almost been a process of elimination, of trying different things and figuring out what did and didn't work for her.

    From early days as a design practitioner to becoming a design lead and a manager, she never planned to be a leader—or really saw herself as one. Her journey has been an organic one, shaped by her willingness to volunteer for new roles and get outside her comfort zone.

    Margaret joins us to talk about her path to Google, nearly 10 years leading the Geo UX organization and the many different faces of leadership. Hear how her current role cultivates UX knowledge, community and talent, and why it's better to call it early than to try to stick with something that doesn’t feel right.

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    Episode 092: Reimagining the Consumer Reports Experience

    It’s a brand that many of us grew up with, pages sprawled open on the kitchen table or stockpiled in the garage. Founded in 1936, Consumer Reports has been a mainstay of savvy consumer decision-making for more than 80 years. In the minds of millions of subscribers, the brand has long been synonymous with unbiased testing, research and consumer advocacy.

    Over the decades, Consumer Reports has worked to reach new audiences, and bring the magazine experience online. And they’ve found success in their efforts. They were one of the first to charge for content and do it well. With their broad media portfolio spanning online, print and TV, they’ve steadily shifted from more transactional-oriented ratings engagements to experiences that hold you over time.

    Cara Determan, Director of User Experience at Consumer Reports, has helped lead that change. Together with her team, Cara has helped to evolve the Consumer Reports experience into what it is today. Cara joins us to talk about CR’s recent redesign, membership and the journey to align everyone around reimagined experiences.

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    Episode 091: From Inbound to Outbound: 20+ Years with Electric Pulp

    Electric Pulp came of age in the early days of the web, back before Y2K, smartphones or civilization as we know it today. Back then, it was like the Wild West: few competitors, few rules…With more work than they could handle, Electric Pulp left it to businesses to come calling—and call, they did. From Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert to the global rebranding of Ford, Electric Pulp was scoring huge projects based on word-of-mouth marketing and a simple elevator pitch: “We build websites.”

    Aaron Mentele, Co-Founder at Electric Pulp, looks back on those early days, and says they didn’t need to pitch, or talk about the work they were doing. They were just launching cool stuff. Fast forward to today, and it’s a different story. Now, they're launching work that’s improving businesses. And that changes everything.

    Take a trip down memory lane, and revisit the web industry past, while learning how agencies are adjusting to the present and planning for the future. We’re talking PR, spec work, RFPs and all sorts of dirty little words that may turn you off—or may just change how you do business.

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    Episode 090: Andrei Bernovski

    At some agency, somewhere, right now, someone is crunching numbers. “I’ll need John, Amy, Jason…20 hours here, 10 hours there, buffer 20 percent…” Looking back at similar projects, they may add a few hours here, pare back scope there, carry the one…And then, voila, a tidy little estimate that’s sure to strike gold.

    Until it doesn’t.

    Project estimating and budgeting is both an art and a science. One Andrei Bernovski knows all too well. Working in project management and operations at agencies such as Tribal DDB, Razorfish, Sapient and boutique firms, he’s seen his fair share of what-if scenarios and projects gone good and bad.

    Inspired to solve his own personal pain points, Andrei co-founded Price&Cost, a project financial estimation and financial management tool. Hear how he set out to right estimating wrongs and how it’s better to adapt the budgeting wheel than try to reinvent it.

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    Episode 089: Staying Curious

    For some, the clear boundaries of an organization can be a comfort. For others, there’s something exhilarating about the great unknown. How do you bring curiosity and a sense of discovery to any situation or workplace?

    Nathan Paterson has worked for organizations of many different shapes and sizes, in boutique settings, leading creative teams for the likes of Disney and now at IDEO Tokyo as a Senior Design Lead. His career orbits around creative pursuits he finds fascinating: theatre, film, musicals, cutting-edge tech, cross-disciplinary design. When Disney came calling, Nathan thought he would give it a year, and ended up staying for nearly ten. Curious about other industries, he transitioned to IDEO, a playground of nearly every industry, sector and organization under the sun.

    Nathan joins us to talk about his journey, and how different organizations and industries inspire in different ways. Hear how ambiguity and optimism help him to stay curious, and what excites him about what’s to come.

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    Episode 087: End-of-Year Tax Strategies for Digital Agencies

    The new tax law ushered in some big changes, leaving many business owners confused over the best way to make the most of their returns. If 184 pages of tax law sounds like a snoozefest to you, you’re in luck. Today, we have David Danic, CPA and Director of Tax Services at Summit CPA Group to clear things up. David’s sharing his notes and highlighting some important tax savings strategies to work on between now and the end of the year.

    From 4K TVs to buying season sports tickets, pre-selling services, team bonuses, parties and in-office lunches, some ideas will help you maximize deductions, while others will not. Find out what the new tax law means for your business, why consulting language in contracts might be a bad thing and how to maximize your spending, retirement plans and R&D activities to save come tax time.

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    Episode 086: Inside the New Mailchimp

    What do you do when your product has outgrown its name, and is going through crazy changes? That’s the dilemma Mailchimp faced as the platform expanded beyond email to include Google and Facebook ads, landing pages, physical postcards and more.

    Newly hired as Mailchimp’s Director of Marketing and Brand Design, Brandy Porter joined Mailchimp as the company was initiating a full redesign of both the Mailchimp brand and its digital experiences. Seeking to understand what made Mailchimp “Mailchimpy,” Brandy and her team pored over data and user interviews, producing user flows, personas and key suggestions to ensure nothing was lost in the redesign.

    Fast forward to September 26, 2018, and the new brand went live to rave reviews. The culmination of months of work from the internal design team, partner agencies and a dozen different artists paid tribute to Mailchimp’s past while giving the brand plenty of space to grow. Hear the story behind the redesign, what’s new with Freddie and what Brandy would do differently if she had to do it all over again.

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    Episode 085: A Look Ahead to 2019

    So where are we headed in 2019? A simple truth: we need more diversity in the tech industry. Diversity of gender, ethnicities, beliefs, abilities—all of it. This will be a focus for us going into 2019. We’re already planning the next Women’s Leadership Camp and kicking off a new event, Digital Diversity Days at Seer.

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    Episode 084: Can Account-Based Marketing Work for Service Shops?

    This time about a year ago, Greg Bear and Travis Caldwall at Bear Group were venturing out on a new sales strategy. They decided to add Account-Based Marketing (ABM) to their mix, whittling down a large list of prospects to just a handful of very specific targets. Researching and planning, they hired a sales development rep, then began crafting personalized campaigns for each prospective account.

    Initially, their efforts seemed to work. But as the hours added up building assets, they wondered if ABM was worth it. They found organizations were either ready to embrace custom web development, or they weren’t. And they wouldn’t know until they had invested a significant amount of energy. Fast forward to today, and Bear is on a different course. Find out what they’re up to, why ABM didn’t work for them and why relationships are everything in this business.

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    Episode 083: Design & Parenting: Experiments, Ego & Shared Values

    If life imitates art, can life imitate work, and vice versa? Scott Welliver, Design Manager, Experience Design at Comcast, is a design leader, starting writer, husband and amateur dad to three kids. In many ways, Scott approaches his work and family lives in the same fashion. Whether he’s changing diapers or devising a UX solution with his team, he’s constantly working to adjust and take the ego out of things to really center in on the people who are involved.

    Scott joins us to talk about repeating values at home and work, and meeting everyone—family member or team member—at their unique place. As he says, “We're all common together, but you're unique and I want to meet you where you're at.” Tune in to hear about Comcast’s core value of experimentation, how the company is entering a new era of thinking and why it’s important to connect with people who make you better at work and at life.

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    Episode 082: Finding Strength in Community

    In the little town of Dayton, Ohio, you’ll find a cool, creative arts community that The Scenery calls home. The product agency’s team took up residence there in June 2017, passing a quiet six months in the new space before heading out for the holidays. Four days after Christmas, in the early morning hours, Dayton fire crews were dispatched to the building on reports of smoke. A restaurant kitchen fire had spread throughout the building, damaging—and effectively closing—the businesses inside.

    Carla Hale, Partner and Director of Client Services, was just waking up when she got the call. As she says, you make a lot of contingency plans as a business owner, but an office fire is not something that most people plan for. Without an office to go back to, Carla feared The Scenery might lose clients or even employees. Fortunately, the local community rallied together, with Sparkbox, a fellow Bureau alum, opening its doors to The Scenery team. Carla joins us to talk about that snowy winter morning, how the fire impacted business and how the team emerged stronger than before.

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    Episode 081: Make Passionate Work

    Jeff Robbins is a rockstar. A real-life rockstar. He was part of the team that created the world's first commercial website. Signed to A&M Records with his band Orbit. Toured with Lollapalooza. Ran Ringo Starr's website. Co-founded Lullabot, demystified Drupal, worked with clients including The GRAMMYs, Tesla Motors and Harvard University…

    And that’s only about half of the crib sheet.

    After he and his co-founder grew Lullabot to 60+ employees, Jeff stepped away to found Yonder as a way to advocate for remote work and bring leaders of distributed companies together. Jeff is also in an indie-rock trio called 123 Astronaut, and helps business owners as a coach and consultant.

    What’s the secret to all the success? Making passionate work, and helping others to do the same. As Jeff sees it, owners can run successful and sustainable companies without losing their empathy or humanity. Jeff joins us to talk about life as a business owner and why it’s important to enjoy your life and your company while you have it.

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    Episode 080: From Service to Product: One CEO’s Journey

    Jeb Banner knows a thing or two about turning ideas into companies. Over the past 20-something years, he’s founded, owned and/or advised a number of businesses ranging from ecommerce to web marketing to software. In 2006, he co-founded SmallBox, an Indianapolis creative agency, where he spent 12 years as CEO.

    Fast forward to today, and Jeb has exited client services altogether. He now leads Boardable, a nonprofit board management software company he co-founded in 2016. Jeb joins us to talk about his decision to move from SmallBox to Boardable full-time, and the mindset shift needed to do so. Tune in for insights on making the service-to-product transition, and the trouble with trying to juggle two different companies at once. If you’re a services company attempting to evolve into a product company, or you’re considering a big leap of your own, Jeb has some advice.

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    Episode 079: Membership as an Agency Business Model

    Clients can be partners, sure. But can they be members? That’s the question Becky McKinnell, President of iBec Creative, set out to answer two years ago. On the heels of her company’s ten-year anniversary, Becky wanted to toss her firm’s lengthy requirements documents and move from hourly/fixed project agreements to something more flexible and service-oriented. She wanted to close the divide she felt fixed cost created with clients, and free up her team to be more creative and iterative. Inspired by ideas from Owner Summit, she set out to implement a membership model.

    Fast forward to today, and iBec Creative has found success with the membership model. Clients receive dedicated access to designers, developers and digital marketers, and nothing is out of scope. As you might guess, membership isn’t easy to sell. But with trust and transparency, it’s a sound, innovative solution. Becky joins us to talk about her move to membership, the impact it’s made on her team and her plans for the future.

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    Episode 078: An Awakening in Nonprofit Branding & Marketing

    For many years, nonprofits have faced a double standard. We want them to do great things, but we don’t want to pay them to spend money on branding or marketing or salaries. So they make do with what they have, or seek out pro bono partnerships that often take a back seat to paying clients.

    Gratefully, in recent years, there’s been an awakening. Donors understand the tie between brand communications, engagement and impact. Companies recognize the business case for doing good. More than occasional feel-good side projects, shops are investing wholeheartedly in the social sector, building specialized knowledge and expertise to help nonprofits succeed.

    Matthew Schwartz, Founder and Executive Director of Constructive, has seen the evolution, and is at the helm of such a shop. He joins us to talk about nonprofits’ impact on the economy, the nuances of value-based business development and the need for a solid book, expertise and focus to win the business you want.

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    Episode 077: Creating Incredible Experiences at Instacart

    You head to the grocery store to pick up a few things. Subconsciously, you make dozens of tiny decisions: the brands you like, the right ratio of yellow to green in your bananas, how your cart is organized, how your bags are packed. Now, imagine a product takes over all of that for you. What does that even look like?

    At Instacart, that experience is what designers are working to solve. More than pretty pictures or screens, the focus is touchpoints, process and what’s important to customers. As Head of Design, Mitch Geere is thinking about communication design, experience design and product design. In his mind, design is a verb. It’s finding solutions. Synthesis, and discovery. Mitch shares his story about getting the right people in place, the gift of design and how designers are partners rather than service individuals.

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    Episode 076: Overcoming Imposter Syndrome

    It takes guts to venture out on your own, admit that things could be better or keep going when everything inside you is screaming at you to stop. In the agency world, on the services side, it’s easy to fault yourself for setbacks. But the inner criticism, the self-doubt and fear are likely just signs of imposter syndrome.

    Melanie Chandruang knows the feeling. Venturing out on her own as a finance and operations consultant, she wondered if she made the right choice. Today, she’s helping owners and operations teams silence their own inner critics, and optimize the inner workings of their companies. As she says, “Just keep going…you do know a lot more than you think you do.”

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    Episode 075: PM Burnout: The Struggle is Real

    Project management is a unique role, and it takes a unique sort of person to fill it, and do it well. In the digital world, project management is still being defined. Some organizations have a good understanding of what a PM is, and isn't, and others are still figuring it out.

    Lynn Winter, a digital strategist, Digital PM Summit speaker and founder of the Manage Digital conference, started her career doing the work that people hated most. Her coworkers sat down and wrote a list of things they didn't want to do anymore, and that became her job description.

    After stints at different organizations, Lynn went freelance. She lost 20 pounds, started sleeping better, switched to a healthier diet and saw her marriage improve. Lynn joins us to talk about what it takes to be a project manager, perfectionism and the tendency to put everyone else first—sometimes at the expense of your own health, happiness and relationships.

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    Episode 074: Design Has a Seat at the Table. Now What?

    In product development, many organizations subscribe to the idea of a three-legged stool: cross-functional teams comprised of engineering, product management and design. Each with an equal say to strike a balance and create a stable product. This sounds nice in theory, but in practice, many designers have trouble calling the shots. Design is too subjective, too soft a business case, and so on…

    Josh Ulm, an executive design leader who previously led the charge at Oracle and Adobe, encourages designers to step up and be bold. Design can absolutely be objective, measured and argued for. The emotional state of the customer, the EQ of the customer, getting to know their real motivations and drives are all critical to making a product stand out and crafting something that people love. Design solves problems for the customer, and it’s the designer’s job to advocate for that customer every step of the way.

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    Episode 073: To 170 & Beyond: Zapier & Intentional Remote Teams

    In 2012, Zapier's ranks totaled three. Three co-founders who found success working nights and weekends on an idea to help people automate the boring and tedious parts of their jobs. Today, Zapier is 170+ strong, with a workforce that spans 15+ countries and 13 different timezones. After hiring their first remote worker years ago, they haven't looked back.

    So how do you foster culture, communication and collaboration when there are no set core hours, no daily in-person cues, no physical compound? Mike Knoop, Co-founder and CPO at Zapier, joins us to talk about the top two remote challenges, four pillars of communication and how everything at Zapier—from hiring to onboarding, communication channels, retreats and more—is intentional by design.

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    Episode 072: Design Systems & Unified Experiences at A+E Networks

    How do you design for half a dozen brands, across multiple platforms, products and channels, without being paralyzed by the sheer scope of what you're trying to do? Bob Calvano, VP Design at A+E Networks, is in the thick of it right now. Bob is at the helm of a 15-person design team hashing out a design system that will be the core to consistent user experiences across a family of brands that includes A&E®, HISTORY®, Lifetime®, Lifetime Movies™, FYI,™, VICELAND℠ and BIOGRAPHY®.

    Located on the same floor in the same office in New York, running a form of agile, A&E Networks designers communicate and collaborate closely to define and develop a cohesive system. Rather than thinking about platform, platform, platform, they now think about one experience, driven by a single system. Bob joins us to talk about his vision for unifying everything, the early stages and how small bites keep his team moving forward.

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    Episode 071: Agency Metrics & Automation with Parakeeto

    KPIs and systems. If those words make you cringe, you're not alone. Business intel is critical for decision-making and agency growth, yet many digital shops struggle with KPIs and implementing measurement systems to get a clear view into their businesses.

    Enter Parakeeto. Parakeeto was born in a Boise tech company, hatched from the frustration that there had to be an easier way. With the idea for a product, Jarod Ferguson, CEO of Royal Jay, connected with Marcel Petitpas, an Apple alum eager to try his hand at entrepreneurship. Together with a small team, the pair are working to release Parakeeto into the wild, to help agencies get the information they need to profit and grow.

    So, which comes first in SaaS, the service or the software? Marcel joins us to talk about his journey from Apple to startup, trial by fire and how mentors and community bring you closer to your dreams.

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    Episode 070: Building a Culture of Digital Transformation

    Digital transformation is the implementation of technology. Partly true. But organizations can’t get ready for better, smarter, different ways of working without putting time and effort into building a culture that's ready for digital transformation.

    Colin D. Ellis is in the business of cultural evolution. A project leadership expert, international speaker and best-selling author, Colin helps companies to define and evolve culture in order to transform business. As Colin defines it, culture is the sum of everyone's attitudes, beliefs, behaviors and traditions. And it’s these same attitudes, beliefs, behaviors and traditions that can hold organizations back.

    To build the future, organizations need to put a shift in, and hold people accountable for change. Each of us has a personal responsibility to change the way we think and the way we act. Colin joins us to talk digital transformation, emotional intelligence, mistakes companies make and his go-to karaoke song.

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    Episode 069: Navigating Social Politics at Work

    In many organizations, even flat ones, a puzzling phenomenon seems to take place. Some people rise time and time again, not because of superior intellect, expertise, technical skills, work ethic or value delivered, but because of something else. They often enjoy better opportunities, more leniency and a higher level of respect. Why? Because they excel at relationships and social politics.

    Now, don’t run away just yet. If you aren’t one to play politics, you’re delegating control of your own destiny. When you choose not to engage, you allow others to define your future for you. Crystal Richards, Principal and Owner of Mosaic Resource Group, has been navigating murky social waters for over 15 years, first as a project manager in the private sector, then in government. Now a trainer and facilitator, she joins us to talk about what social politics are, why they matter and how you can use them to your own advantage.

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    Episode 068: An Intro to EOS with Tom Barrett

    If you’re experiencing pain in your business—feeling stuck, frustrated or out of sync with your team, it could be a signal that your business operating system needs a reboot. But how do you know what’s working and what’s not—and what to do about it? It can be hard to define your strengths, weaknesses and next steps, especially if you don’t know what you’re looking for. Luckily, peers, experts and business frameworks such as EOS® can help show you the way. We caught up with Tom Barrett, a Bureau of Digital subject matter expert and Professional EOS Implementer™, for an inside look at the Entrepreneurial Operating System®.

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    Episode 067: The Entrepreneur's Guide to Keeping Your Sh*t Together

    Get together with strangers, and the question invariably comes up: “So…what do you do?” Depending upon who’s in attendance, and who’s asking, the level of appreciation for your career choice—that of an entrepreneur—varies. If you’re standing next to, say, a physician, firefighter or international aid worker, your job may not be fully appreciated for the high-stress, high-risk, “Will I have a job tomorrow?” dream job that it really is.

    Sherry Walling gets it. An entrepreneur herself, Sherry is also an author and clinical psychologist with a long history of helping people who end up in high-stress situations by way of their vocations. As a business owner, you may feel alone in the fear, procrastination, doubt, frustration and loneliness of entrepreneurship, but you’re not. As Sherry says, entrepreneurs all break in the same ways. The key is acknowledging when you’re not feeling right and finding ways to give your mind and body a rest. Sound impossible? Take a moment, breathe and treat yourself to a well-deserved moment of founder zen.

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    Episode 066: Why Time-Based Pricing Doesn’t Work

    In Blairtopia, time is a thief. Blair Enns, CEO of Win Without Pitching, and author of The Win Without Pitching Manifesto and Pricing Creativity: A Guide to Profit Beyond the Billable Hour, is out to create a more utopian state. One where firms win without pitching, get paid for the value they create and let time go.

    The pricing debate—time versus value—can be polarizing. Yes, there’s truth in the notion that experts should be paid more, and creativity is worth more than hours spent. But how do you price value that hasn’t been created yet, and what do you do if that value never materializes, or worse, causes things to go south? Tune in for Blair’s take on mastering the value conversation, three levels of financial success for creative and marketing firms and how agencies can leave time behind to change the very nature of their firms.

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    Episode 065: The Truth is Right at This Moment

    Race, gender, sexual orientation, diversity, inclusion…These terms can elicit different feelings in different people, from a sense of hope and progress to fear and discomfort. Viewed through the lens "diversity is a design process," conversations become softer, more open and accessible. Diversity becomes an opportunity worth investing in, a collaborative effort to design products and services that are more effective, efficient and people-centered.

    Design for Diversity™ is the brainchild of Boyuan Gao and Jahan Mantin, founders of the New York-based consultancy, Project Inkblot. Boyuan and Jahan developed the Design for Diversity™ framework to help companies embed diverse perspectives and leadership into business operations. As they describe it, tech and media are at the critical juncture of humanity right now. As an industry, we need to shake things up, and create human experiences that all people can see themselves in. Tune in to hear how Project Inkblot took shape, how the framework works and how you can solve for diversity with your own team, within your own resources and community assets.

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    Episode 064: Building Community at the Digital PM Summit

    In 2013, about 150 project managers came together in Philadelphia for the inaugural Digital PM Summit. That year, it was all about finding your people, running web projects and keeping clients happy. This year, the Summit agenda runs the full gamut of topics and speakers: Agile, IoT products, PM self-care, what’s next in our careers and more.

    Brett Harned, Founder of the Digital PM Summit, joins us to talk about the evolution and growth of the community as well as subsequent shifts in programming. As the community swells with more DPMs from in-house teams, nonprofits, higher ed, traditional backgrounds, etc., there is more we can all learn together. Tune in to hear about the 2018 Digital PM Summit in Memphis, and how the community can lift itself up by doing better.

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    Episode 063: A Process for Process

    Process. It feels like the answer to so many project woes and a threat to culture and creativity. So how do you go into an existing team with an existing flow and social dynamics and “fix” things? What’s the process process? To start, you observe. That’s what Robert Sfeir, Senior Director of Engineering at Huge, explains as he shares the story of aligning the efforts of a 1,500-person digital agency. Too often people approach process change looking for patterns they know instead of watching to find small tweaks that could make things better. Once a few successes are enjoyed, the team starts to trust that improvements can be made. That’s the spark that gets real change underway.

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    Episode 062: In Pursuit of Products

    It’s an idea that several digital client services shops toy with: build and launch a product of your very own. So what do you do when you have the idea, know how to build it and want to give it a go? Craig Bryant, Founder/CEO of We Are Mammoth has been there, lived that. With the help of his team, he’s successfully spun up not one, but two SaaS products: one accidental, one intentional—both built to help his own people work better and be happier.

    Craig joins us to share insights into We Are Mammoth as a venture company, and the stories behind two products: DoneDone, a simple bug and issue tracker, and Kin, HR software to improve onboarding, engagement and the bottom line. Craig discusses five and 10 years into a product, patience as a critical virtue and how to go with your gut when you’re told to pull the plug.

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    Episode 061: A Reckoning & Resilience: The Future of DPM

    Has project management reached a tipping point? Rachel Gertz, Partner and Digital PM Trainer at Louder Than Ten, believes so. In the not-so-distant past, project managers didn’t have much say in how their companies were run. They shuffled folders, organized to-dos and made small talk with clients. Today, companies recognize DPMs as the front lines of business, secondary business developers, early-stage strategists and more, well worth attention—and investment. Rachel joins us to talk about a new class of empowered DPMs and how these resilient leaders are shaping the future of the industry.

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    Episode 060: Gaining EOS Traction by Facing Hard Truths

    As digital agencies, we’re great at marketing our clients. Marketing ourselves? Not so much. Mark O’Brien, Chief Executive Officer at Newfangled, knows how this goes: our referral network starts to tap out, we have a blog(ish), maybe some social. We do the things, but not really in a meaningful or sustainable way. Mark saw this cobbler’s-children-have-no-shoes paradox back in 2015. At the time, the “too cheap to fire” intern turned CEO realized Newfangled needed to ditch 20 years of web development fast or perish. Going through the EOS Traction coaching program, Mark helped Newfangled to tai chi its way to discover its unique ability. Tune in to find out how you can uncover hard truths, market smarter and overcome your fear of changing out the plumbing while the water is still running.

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    Episode 059: Finding Focus with Account-Based Marketing

    How do you gain more control over leads, and improve your chances of working with your ideal clients? For Bear Group in Seattle, the answer lies in Account-Based Marketing (ABM) and personalized campaigns—getting in front of the right people at the right times, in the right places. Looking back at successful past client relationships, Bear Group realized their ideal clients share a common criteria. Ranking against that criteria, they hashed out a super short list of probable best-fits. Today, their marketing and sales efforts focus on a mere handful of targeted prospects. Instead of trying to help every marketer solve every marketing problem when it comes to web development, they’re out to solve a very defined set of challenges for only a few.

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    Episode 058: Rob Harr Talks Ops, the ‘How’ Between Sales & Profit

    Rob Harr can see into the future. He knows what’s coming in, what’s going out, who’s working on what, for how many hours, through December. What kind of sorcery is this, you ask?

    Over the past nine years at Sparkbox, this scrum master-turned-Nostradamus has engineered a finely tuned Ops system built on Friday forecasts, micro-cash sheets, rolling six-month billable averages and two years of feeling really uncomfortable.

    Tune in to hear the method behind his magic and learn how to uncover truth in your own data sets, repetitive grading and a fresh mindset.

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    Episode 057: 1:1 with Jen Dary: Success Is in the Cards

    “What did you want to be when you were eight years old?” It’s a powerful question that can open up all sorts of conversations and illuminate the way we work together and where we want to go with our career. But who feels comfortable asking this during a 1:1? We're managers, not Oprah—bosses with a big letter B. Plucky's Jen Dary has the solution. Drawing on four years of leadership coaching, she’s created The Plucky 1:1 Starter Pack to help leaders and teams be more successful together. Listen in on her story, find out what she wanted to be as a kid and discover how she found her North Star.

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    Episode 056: Fly Media Origin Story Part Two with Sherri and Reuben Johnson

    How do you start a tech company without a computer? Drive and relentless determination. Sherri and Reuben Johnson worked out of their local library, using books and VHS tapes to teach themselves how to build sites. With no clients or connections, they would park their junker car out of sight, then walk the main streets handing out printouts to promote their web services to local businesses. Like many of us, their beginning setup wasn’t ideal. So how do you make things work when you have ability, but few tools or resources—and how do you stay true to yourself in the process? Listen to Part 2 of their story for some inspiration.

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    Episode 055: Fly Media Origin Story Part One with Sherri and Reuben Johnson

    Of the hundreds of people I’ve met who started a digital agency, almost all of them stumbled into it. But the two people on today’s show saw the web as a way to improve their lives. Living in a small Northeastern mill city, a tanking economy and failing health were taking its toll on the young couple. Until a friend told them about working in tech in Atlanta. Sherri and Reuben Johnson never looked back. Listen to part one of The Fly Media Origin Story.

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    Episode 054: Empowering Teams with Garci Inigo

    Imagine walking into a room of 200 people. People you’ve never met. People who don’t know you from anyone. Now imagine you have to figure out how to get them all to work together. And not just work together, but work together effectively. Because your job depends on it. Where do you start? How do you know who’s a team player and who’s a problem? And how do you answer questions from your boss like, “how long is this going to take?” and “how will we know if it’s working?” Well, that’s exactly what Garci Inigo did when he accepted a job with the National Bank of Canada. Listen in to learn first hand about the power of empowering teams.

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    Episode 053: Sales with Dan Englander

    If I say the word “sales” I bet a lot of you will stop readin… WAIT! Come back right now! This is important. For some reason in the digital services world, we get creeped out by that word. But this isn’t about wearing polyester and convincing you to buy the 2-year warranty that you don’t want. But it might include cold calling. And today more than ever it feels like digital agencies are maturing when it comes to how they manage not only inbound but outbound too. So listen in as Dan Englander from Sales Schema talks about selling in a way that doesn’t make it feel gross. Nice work, Dan.

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    Episode 052: The Bureau Standard Agreement for Digital Services

    From the beginning, digital studios large and small have leaned on contracts, SOWs, and MSAs that weren’t quite right. Either they were based on agreements that had been created for a different industry or we worked with lawyers that didn’t quite understand the nuances of the work. Many of us rolled our own which lead to some great innovation while also exposing us to more than a few liabilities. Finally, there is a standard base level agreement for digital services. Crafted by Gabe Levine and Josh Barrett, the Bureau Standard Agreement for Digital Services is a starting point for digital agencies that has been written based on the work that we do. Listen in as Gabe and Josh talk about the origin, process, and future of this large step forward for the industry.

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    Episode 051: Build. Sell. Repeat. with Martin Ringlein

    If you’ve ever ventured off on your own to start a business, or even thought about it, then you should listen to this episode. There comes a time in every entrepreneur’s journey when they think about selling the company they’ve created. But how do you do that? And is what you’ve grown even worth selling? Listen as Martin Ringlein shares his story of selling his digital agency to Twitter. Then leaving Twitter to join President Obama’s innovation council. All the while running a successful co-working space which he later sold. Oh, and creating a product to disrupt the event space which was also acquired. His insights, experience, and enthusiasm are more energizing, they can help you see the world of business in a new light.

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    Episode 050: Marketing and Managing Clients with Ilise Benun

    Why is it we don't do for ourselves what we do for our clients? We know the key to success in new business is sharing the great work we do. But when we get busy we forget to tell everyone we're here. It's crucial to remember that marketing ourselves isn't a one-time effort, it's an ongoing process of outreach across multiple channels. Frustratingly, we often quit using our most successful techniques because we don't like them. Even though they worked amazingly well. Today, Ilise Benun joins us on the Bureau Briefing to talk about marketing and managing clients. We also talk about the importance of self-respect in building the companies we want. Because ultimately, marketing is about relationships with ideal clients.

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    Episode 049: Building a Product with Martijn van Tilburg

    If you are part of a digital agency, there has a been a discussion around launching your own product. We all talk about it. Heck, maybe you've tried to build that perfect solution in the time between client projects. But you never get traction. Or maybe you assigned a dedicated team to develop it, but that adds financial and cultural stress to a successful service business. So how do digital agencies build and launch great products? Listen in as Martijn van Tilburg shares his insights from the creation of 10,000ft.

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    Episode 048: Podcasting with Emily Lewis and Lea Alcantara

    Podcasting has always been popular, but there seems to be a new resurgence among digital agencies. But what are the keys to success in podcasting? And the pitfalls to avoid? Lea Alcantara and Emily Lewis share the experience of reaching 100 episodes of their very popular CTRL+CLICK CAST show. They share how they got started, stay motivated and discuss the highs and lows of a long-running podcast.

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    Episode 047: Building Community with Chris Coyier

    As humans, we are social creatures. We crave to be with others who make us feel like part of the pack, especially when we feel a little different. That's why the web industry has been about community from the beginning. Over the past two decades, designers and developers have been getting together to share, learn and support one another. As the industry has evolved, so have the communities. In this episode of the Bureau Briefing, Carl and Chris talk about helping communities they are a part of to grow while making sure the value of the connections are maintained.

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    Episode 046: Virtual Reality with Stefan Muirhead

    Every digital agency has a set of services they sell. Deciding what you'll offer out of the gate is always tricky. Do you base it on what the team is passionate about or what clients are willing to pay for? Maybe both. Regardless, over time the needs and capabilities of digital products will force every shop to adapt or risk becoming irrelevant. Web standards, content strategy, mobile and responsive were several of the changes that dictated the success of a digital agency. So what's the next wave? For Stefan Muirhead and the team at Ignition 72, it's Virtual Reality.

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    Episode 045: Making It Happen with Jason Zook

    You know that idea you had? The one that seemed like it could really make a difference in your life. Then, over a period of time, you convince yourself that it will never work. Why do we do this? Well, one day Jason Zook decided to be a force of nature. He took one of his crazy ideas and decided to launch a company where he was paid to wear t-shirts. And it worked…eventually. Because he did the work. He contacted everyone he knew. And hustled. And after months of not quitting, he got traction. Eventually, IWearYourShirt made over a million dollars in revenue. Then he shut it down and forced another crazy idea to work. So why aren't you doing your idea again?

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    Episode 044: AM + PM = DPM with Brett Harned

    Digital project management has been a part of the web from the beginning, even if we didn’t call it that when we started. As the digital services industry matured, we loosely formalized the role of a digital project manager. But the gaps and differences from one shop to another has led to some confusion. Especially with the recent trend of the account managers being brought on at digital agencies. And now, a tangled web of AM, PM and DPM has us all a little confused as to who should do what. Listen in as Brett Harned shares why we should focus on clarifying the role and not the title. And more specifically, the human beings we task with the responsibilities.

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    Episode 043: Honesty and Inclusion with Willie Jackson

    Diversity. It’s a big word that causes a lot of conversation. Unfortunately the conversation isn’t leading to action. In fact, it’s leaving some disengaged convinced that others are “fixing” the problems. In this episode of the Bureau Briefing, Willie Jackson shares his thoughts on why we need to get past the concept of diversity and move forward with a focus on inclusion. To do that, we have to accept some uncomfortable truths about how we got here and what we all need to let go of to move forward.

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    Episode 042: Back to the Basics with Sam Barnes

    They call them "the basics". Little, innocuous things that don't seem to really matter. But they do. In fact, something as simple as sending an acknowledgment email to an important message can make all the difference in keeping a team engaged and a client confident. This week Carl and Sam Barnes talk about why getting back to the basics is so important and how to get better at them. And when you do, you can enjoy the positive changes in both your work and your relationships with the people on your team.

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    Episode 041: Soft Skills with Peta Kennett-Wilson

    Soft skills are rarely discussed in the process focused world of digital project management. But when you spend time understanding the team and the client as humans, an amazing thing can happen. People start to care. They open up and share ideas. They talk about what matters to them. Concerns they may have. Even previous experiences that could impact the way work gets done. With that openness, everything gets better. Even the bottom line. But across cultures, there is a tendency to get a little mechanical. So how can we put people back at the heart of how we approach project management? Peta Kennett-Wilson has some thoughts.

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    Episode 040: Business Development with Joe Rinaldi

    In the early days of web design, there was more work than any one shop could handle. Everyone was super selective on the clients they took, and project focused. There was no need for a business development person as much as a need for filtering through the mass of inbound leads. If you treated people fairly, did decent work and kept your commitments you would succeed. As they say, those were the days. And they are gone. So now what? What are we hanging on to from the past that's hurting our future. It's time to figure it out, because there is a new wave of agencies coming in without the baggage. And if the established shops want to succeed, some changes are in order.

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    Episode 039: Hacking Agile with Dave Prior

    Fact: Digital agencies struggle with Agile. It feels like a private club with a secret handshake. But if you get in it will open up a world of faster and better project management. The problem is it never quite fits with how a shop works. One solution is to lowercase the "A", or "a" if you will. What does that even mean? Listen in as Dave Prior, PMP, PMI-ACP, CSM, CSPO, CSP and CST shares his insights from over 20 years of helping teams and individuals manage their work in the most effective way possible.

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    Episode 038: Shutting Down with Jess Singer

    When you start a business you pour your heart and soul into it. If you’re willing to make the commitment and sacrifices, your business makes it. If you’re really lucky it thrives. But eventually, almost all businesses fail. And when they do it is a horrible, painful and severely depressing experience. Today, Jess Singer shares her story of founding and closing Mamabargains, one of the first and most successful deal sites ever. It had crazy growth, major corporate partnerships, and a huge fan base. So what went wrong? And more importantly, how does a founder recover from failure in the face of success?

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    Episode 037: Puppies, DPMs and Leadership with Meghan McInerny

    Meghan McInerny, the Chief Operating Officer of Clockwork, shares with us the positive impact of puppies to your personal health, the leadership role that is digital pm management, choosing courage over comfort and what it takes to go from good to great as a Digital PM.

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    Episode 036: The Impact of Improv with Gary Ware

    Over the past few years, improv has become more and more accepted in the business world. Not only is it seen as a way for teams to connect on a deeper level but also as a way for everyone in an organization to improve how they work together. On today's show, Gary Ware shares his story of finding improv and embracing it's powerful and positive impact on collaboration and culture.

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    Episode 035: Embracing Silos with Amanda Costello

    Silos. We've been taught they are bad. They hurt productivity, culture, and quality. But what if we're wrong? Amanda Costello shares her insights on embracing silos as the natural order of the human condition. Her experiences in higher ed builds a strong case that silos can actually improve not only the work we do but the relationships with our teams.

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    Episode 034: Taking Control with Jason Fried

    It's funny. Businesses are great at protecting things like money and secrets. But when it comes to their most valuable asset, their people's time, they give it away. Heck most of us agree to meetings, calls, and conversations that aren't nearly as valuable as the uninterrupted blocks of time we need to create something of importance. What's amazing is many of us have other people that can access our calendars and add meetings to it without our permission. In this episode, Jason Fried shares the importance of taking control of our time and more importantly, how to use it effectively.

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    Episode 033: Up From The Ashes with JD Graffam

    If you run a business, you've probably faced it. The fear of looking at the bank account when you know it's not going to be pretty. You blame yourself. You don't see any way out. But you know you'll make it. You have to. There is simply no other option. JD Graffam has been there. With a mere $67 in the company coffers, he fought back. Listen to his story and advice in this Bureau Briefing. Spoiler Alert! You're going to have to get innovative.

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    Episode 032: Waterfall to Agile with Andi Graham

    When you run a content-focused digital agency, Agile (yes, with a capital A) can be a little hard to figure out. Most of us started with no real concept of how things would get done. But we understood the design process part of digital products. Then as we got traction, we realized we'd need other people to build the projects. Waterfall works really well with these types of hand-offs. But forecasting difficulties arise making it tough to know when you can take on more work. Well, you're welcome. Here is a conversation all about making the move to Agile when you're focused on the marketing side of digital development. Oh, and there's a whole lot of honesty too, courtesy of Andi Graham.

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    Episode 031: User Experience and the Next Generation with Maya Patterson

    The next wave of UX Designers is out there. They expect things to be simple, powerful and user-focused. There is just one problem. Most of them don’t know what a UX Designer is. Today, Maya Patterson joins us to talk about the challenge of preparing for a career in a field you probably don’t know exists. The solution? While traditional academics is failing to prepare digital professionals, they are creating great thinkers and problem solvers. So, as an industry, we have a responsibility to reach out to give this next wave insight into their potential and a path to see it realized.

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    Episode 030: Design Leadership with Aarron Walter

    What is design leadership? A new term that's swept through the industry, it's really just leadership. But now that design has a seat at the table, the issue becomes how does a design leader learn and cope when they are making huge decisions every day? From operationalizing design to creating a culture of continuous improvement, design leaders are tasked with defining the path for themselves and the design leaders of tomorrow. Aarron Walter joins us on the Bureau Briefing to talk about his journey and thoughts on how design leaders are approaching these challenges.

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    Episode 029: More on Sabbaticals with Ben Callahan

    Most of us are just now getting back into the swing of things after taking a break the last couple of weeks of 2016. As we get back to work, let's enjoy a another Bureau Briefing on taking sabbaticals. In his first week back from a month off, Ben Callahan sits down with Carl to talk about the how and why of taking time off. From preparing yourself and your team to setting expectations and the eventual re-entry into daily life.

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    Episode 027: Depression, Alcohol and Eating Disorders with Justine Arreche

    Life is hard. For over 30 million people in The United States, these difficulties can manifest themselves in an eating disorder. In the web industry, it's really easy for this to go unnoticed because of the increase in distributed teams and popularity of alcohol at social events and conferences. Justine Arreche has suffered immensely with these issues and today she's speaking out to help others know they aren't alone.

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    Episode 026: Replacing Postmortems with Caitlin Sheaffer

    For those of us who manage digital projects, we have a good feel for what will go right and what will go wrong. The team often falls into the same traps, and the clients often get worried about the same issues. Some of us hold postmortems to see what went wrong. But even the term implies the project was DOA. To make it less dreary, we change the name of the process retrospectives. But that still implies we can only look backwards. On this week’s Bureau Briefing, Caitlin Sheaffer shares a better way to improve projects. Introducing Learning Reviews.

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    Episode 025: The Value of Relationships in Project Management with Elizabeth Michalka

    Scope, schedule and resources, aka the project triangle, are important … but ultimately the difference between success and failure comes down to the relationships we form. Elizabeth Michaka shares how she became a DPM in higher education where budget was never a factor in projects. While she was attending a Digital PM Workshop she realized something. The focus on budget was so strong, it seemed to have overshadowed the importance on relationships.

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    Episode 024: What's Next? with Carl Smith

    From the beginning, the Bureau has been about strong connections. In this episode, Carl shares the direction the Bureau is heading to make those connections even stronger. While events will always play a central role in how the Bureau community comes together, a new community site will provide new levels of collaboration, education, and support.

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    Episode 023: Why Everybody Hates Project Management with Carson Pierce

    There you are. In the middle of the client and the team. Trying to control the uncontrollable. Forcing a smile as you give bad news to your coworkers. Or pointing back to a document as you tell the client no. So how do you get through a bad day? Especially when you've got the added pressure of managing multiple projects? Although we try, it can't be solved with process, tools or methodology. So how can we maintain our sanity? Listen in as Carson Pierce shares his thoughts.

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    Episode 022: Show me the MVP! with Natalie Warnert

    Developer turned Agile Coach, Natalie Warnert joins us on the Bureau Briefing today. We talk about the need for flexibility in agile and moving from a prescriptive to an effective approach. We touch on how design fits into an agile process and how the language we use can make all the difference in keeping a project moving forward. We'll also address the question, why aren't more women involved in agile? For more information on women in agile, go to womeninagile.com or nataliewarnert.com.

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    Episode 021: Accessibility for All with Robert Jolly

    Imagine waking up one day and not being able to use the web. It's still there, you just can't seem to make it work correctly. It happens to people every day. Accessibility has been an important topic since the early days of the web, but it's never become a priority. Why? Robert Jolly may have the answer. He became an accessibility advocate after a stroke showed him the unnecessary limitations we're imposing on people all over the world.

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    Episode 020: The Power of Effective Communication with Elizabeth Harrin

    Very few digital professionals would disagree that great communication is the key to success. Especially when dealing with client services. So how do we plan for effective communication? Elizabeth Harrin, the founder of the blog A Girl’s Guide to PM, owner of Otobus Group and author of several books on project management, is here to share her insights on establishing valuable client feedback in a timely manner. After all, what’s the use in finding out what went wrong after the fact?

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    Episode 019: Giving Back with Wil Reynolds

    When we're building websites and digital products it's very rare that we're making an immediate impact in the world, let alone our own communities. Listen in as Wil shares his experiences and the importance of spending one night a year sleeping on the street with other business leaders. Not only does it raise money for a good cause, it keeps him in touch with the reality that many of his fellow human beings endure every day and night. Find out more about Covenant House here: https://www.covenanthouse.org. And please get involved in helping your community if you aren't already.

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    Episode 017: Apprenticeships | Paying it Forward with Dan Mall

    In the middle ages, guilds began the practice of apprenticeships. Master craftsmen could employ young people for a typical term of seven years exchanging training, food and housing for labor. Apprenticeships are now taking shape in the digital agency world. Dan Mall shares his approach to creating skilled craftspeople one at a time, over nine months. More than just learning the skills required to do the work, they learn how to be professionals.

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    Episode 016: Fair Play | A Diversity Project with Paul Searle

    Most of the people listening to this podcast want to do the right thing. But what is the right thing? It’s different for each of us. For Paul Searle it’s taking his gift of capturing emotion and meaning in video and helping those that are underrepresented. Listen in as Paul shares his story of launching Fair Play, an initiative to provide diverse events with greater awareness through the support of some of the largest companies in tech.

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    Episode 015: The Power of Empowerment with Traci Barrett

    Let’s face it, in most digital agencies there isn’t a clear path for individuals. There are jobs that get done and people who do them. Often employees feel the only way forward is to move on. But what if there is another way that not only gives them a sense of progress but also gives agency owners part of their life back? This week on the Bureau Briefing, Traci Barrett talks about the power of empowering employees and how to get started.

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    Episode 014: Overcoming with Jen Dary

    Jen Dary is many things. The entrepreneur behind Plucky, a company that helps businesses understand and improve themselves by working on their internal relationships. A wife. The mother of two young boys. A life-long people person. And on April 8 she became something else, a woman with a brain tumor. Listen in as Jen shares her journey with Carl and thanks the community for all of their love and support.

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    Episode 013: Reputation Marketing with Rhea Drysdale

    As business models go, Reputation Marketing has to be among the more interesting in the digital agency realm. Clients you can’t mention with public dirt they want removed. How do you vet your clients? What’s the impact of constantly cleaning up messes on your company culture? How do you pitch your services when you can’t talk about what you do? Rhea Drysdale sheds light on all this and her company's more progressive offerings on the Bureau Briefing.

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    Episode 012: Corporate Collaboration with Eleanor Vajzovic

    Digital agencies have a strong desire to collaborate with each other. It works because of a common goal of creating something great that neither could do on their own. Is it possible for traditional corporations whose cultures don’t often embrace transparency and failure to do the same? Eleanor Vajzovic explains how she’s helping one corporation do just that.

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    Episode 011: Health, Happiness and Better Business with Rob Harr

    It doesn't matter if you're an owner, a manager or a producer... if you love what you're doing you make sacrifices to do the best job possible. Often those sacrifices come at a high cost; our physical and mental health. This week we're joined by Rob Harr who tells us about his journey to get healthier, happier and create an environment where his team can do the same.

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    Episode 010: Balancing Family and Work Demands with Jessie Shternshus

    Demands on our time is nothing new, but when you're being pulled in two directions by work and family it can be crazy stressful. Work provides the money your family needs but your presence at home ensures the emotional support required for a healthy family. In this episode, Jessie Shternshus shares her struggles and insights from running a business and raising a family at the same time.

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    Episode 009: The Legal Side with Gabe Levine

    Most of us running digital agencies today weren’t business people. We were artists, musicians, writers or developers. We started our companies doing what we understood, creating digital products. The things we didn’t understand, we faked. Like contracts, statements of work and non-disclosure agreements. In this episode, Gabe Levine of Levine Baker shares his thoughts on common issues, current challenges and steps to take to get your shop buttoned up from a legal perspective.

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    Episode 008: KPIs, Dashboards and Transparency with Grant Gochnauer

    We’ve all been there. If we could only figure out what was working and what wasn’t in our digital agencies. Recently, conversations around KPIs and dashboards have been taking place among our Owner Camp alumni. How do you identify what to track and more importantly, what do you do with the information? Grant Gochnauer of Vodori shares his thoughts and experiences on creating public dashboards that build trust versus making people feel like a cog in the machine.

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    Episode 007: Vulnerability with Sara Bacon

    This week Carl sits down with Sara Bacon to talk about the importance of being vulnerable as an entrepreneur and as a human being. Although it’s uncomfortable, vulnerability creates an environment of trust where a team can connect on a deeper level.

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    Episode 006: Design Leadership with Richard Banfield

    How do you become a design leader? Is it trial and error? A degree you can get from school? Maybe there is a checklist of things to accomplish before you earn your merit badge? Or maybe it’s all of these and none. As Richard Banfield explains in this episode, becoming a design leader has no set path. But the best way forward is learning from others who’ve achieved the designation.

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    Episode 005: Diversity and Inclusion with Lori Gold Patterson

    Diversity. In the web industry it’s a word that causes heads to nod, but do we really understand what it means? It’s not about hiring people different than ourselves, it’s about including them in a way that changes fabric of the communities we belong to. In this episode, Lori Gold Patterson shares her story and the importance of diversity and inclusion.

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    Episode 004: Reviews with Tim Tuttle

    Quarterly, annual, 360... OH MY! At the beginning of this year, Carl sat down with Tim Tuttle of 40Digits to talk about everyone’s favorite topic, reviews. Should they be tied to compensation? How often should they take place? How do they change as a company grows? All this and more on this episode of The Bureau Briefing. Enjoy!

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    Episode 003: Creating Culture with Nancy Lyons

    Culture. It’s the ultimate buzzword. But the truth is it’s the difference between the success and failure of every digital agency. If your team is miserable then your clients are miserable. If everyone feels appreciated then there is nothing you can’t accomplish. This week Carl welcomes Nancy Lyons of Clockwork, possibly the best place to work in the whole dang industry.

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    Episode 001: What's the Bureau of Digital? with Greg Hoy

    So what is this Bureau of Digital thing? How did it happen? What is its mission? In this, the premier episode of the Bureau Briefing, Partner Carl Smith interviews Founding Partner Greg Hoy to find out.

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