Creative Business: An Interview With Dan James

Wallacespace

Next month, The Future of Web Design London 2011 will kick off with a full day of intensive workshops, running from 9am – 5pm. Offering small working groups, and a chance to really get to the bottom of today’s hot topics – what better way to start your FOWD experience! We’ll be based at the wonderful Wallacespace St Pancras (pictured above) who will be providing their famously amazing catering throughout the day.

I caught up with one of our awesome session leaders, Dan James, to hear a little more about how his workshop will play out…

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Hi Dan, tell us a little bit about yourself…

Hey, I’m the CEO of silverorange, a very small design/development agency located in the middle of nowhere, Canada. We have been an agency in our current configuration since the middle of 1999. I’m happily married and have a rabbit and a brand-new puppy. I currently live and work out of Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada.

What gave you the idea for your FOWD workshop topic, “Creative Business”?

The idea for my workshop came about from conversations I’ve had with other agency owners/founders/workers. Because our company is isolated in the middle of no where, and this is the only company we’ve ever been a part of, we have developed some unique ways to go about our business. We’ve never thought of what we do as particularly interesting but after hearing other people’s reactions we’ve quickly realized we’re not “normal”.

What kind of things will you be covering?

My workshop will have more in common with improvisational theatre than it will an HTML 5 workshop. My goal is to lead the participants through the process of thinking about their business, and how they could go about it in a different manner. There is going to be a lot of group conversation, group activities, simulations, and debates. It should be a lot of fun.

Here is a sample of some of the things we’ll be covering:

  • Sales – How to not waste your time.
  • Getting paid – If you’re just billing by the hour/day then you’re really missing out.
  • Contracts – Important things to know about design/development contracts. How do we know? We’ve been screwed by these things in the past.
  • Ownership, Staff, Reimbursement – How to keep a core team together for a long, long time.
  • Dealing with clients on a daily basis – Friday, 4pm the phone rings, it’s THAT client. What do you do?

What can people expect to learn from your workshop?

My goal is that people will come away from the workshop thinking about the business side of their companies in as creative a way as they think about the design and development.

What are you most looking forward to about FOWD?

I’m really excited to be part of FOWD 2011. I think the most exciting part for me is to be around peers. The Internet is wonderful but there is still something about meeting and hanging out with people in real life.

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Seats are starting to run low for our workshops now, but if you want to register for your place next month, just head here and secure your seat!

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