Jeff Strang / Digital Creative / Auckland New Zealand
My road is exploration, where can the paths lead, what can be achieved. Anchored by my partner and fuelled by the imagination of our kids, mine is an open minded journey, destination yet defined. Exploration is my road, what’s yours?
In the beginning, did you have a clear idea of the destination, or has it been an unexpected journey? Tell us about the process.
Most people would describe my journey from ‘there’ to ‘here’ as unconventional. An explorer at heart, the ocean offered the most accessible option to experience a life of contrast to an inland rural upbringing.
I loved working at sea and still do. Few professions prepare a young person for the challenges of life better than that of a mariner. Pre-trip preparation is essential, but it is resourcefulness that will get you home – two skills well learnt and applied often.
Almost 20-years of seafaring proved solid material for a side gig of freelance writing. When catalysed by the arrival of my eldest daughter, the writing experience facilitated a career change to journalism.
In the late 2000s, we were foot soldiers on the frontline of a print versus digital war. The digital landscape proved an alluring enemy. Its potential intrigued me. It was only a matter of time before the explorer’s itch demanded scratching, an impulse that sparked the foundation of Fathom.
For me, the digital development agency is both a new journey and the continuation of the original path. Like at sea, we solve real problems every day with preparation, practical thinking, and resourcefulness, albeit with a less captivating office view.
Were any strongly held beliefs or opinions challenged on your journey?
Imposter syndrome has proved hard to shake at times. I would take on new challenges with little prior knowledge, learning on the job while soaking in the experience of many top people in each environment.
If working at sea taught me to be self-reliant, moving to the professional world forced me to have faith in others and to utilise the skills talented people bring to the table to achieve successful outcomes.
How do you refocus and stay on top of your game?
The most effective way for me to achieve clarity at work is to step away from it for a while.
Although it takes a significant time commitment, I love wilderness fly-fishing. Every new bend in the stream is full of expectation, while the process allows my mind to explore solutions with creative freedom. The trip home is invariably fuelled by renewed enthusiasm for a project.
And what do you love about being a dad?
What is not to love about being a dad?
There is a six-year age gap between my two wonderful girls and one of the biggest joys is observing the time they put into each other. Recently, mountain biking has become a big deal in our house. Both love it and push hard to explore their growing capabilities. It is a pleasure to facilitate and join in an activity that benefits us all as a family.
Learn more about Fathom digital development agency at www.fathomsolutions.io