Big news and big changes

Paul Boag

After 13 years of working at Headscape, I am going to be stepping down as a full-time member of the team and striking out on my own.

Don’t misunderstand. I will continue to be a non-executive director and have a shareholding in the company. I will be there in an advisory capacity and we will no doubt work together from time to time. It is just that on a day-to-day basis I will be doing other things.

Okay I know. The title oversold this post. Sure it’s big news for me, but it’s not life changing for anybody else. That said, you may have a few questions, especially if you work with either Headscape or me. With that in mind I have tried to predict your questions and answer them below.

Why have you decided to step down?

When a politician gets embroiled in a sex scandal and has to resign, they often say they want to "spend more time with their family". Well in my case that is true! (not the sex scandal bit.)

Working at Headscape has been the most amazing experience. But it is also demanding. Over the years it has taken it’s toll on my health, well being and family life. It has been worth every minute, but eventually you must re-examine things.

Now is that moment. We started homeschooling our son a year ago and it has changed our lives. We have so much flexibility and we want to make good use of that. We want to travel, enjoy time off and have a more flexible schedule. Unfortunately working in a team doesn’t make that easy. That is why I have decided the best course of action is for me to strike out on my own.

What are you going to do?

Good question. I have a few ideas, but I am open to suggestions!

I want to write more and continue with my speaking. I love sharing what I have learnt over the years and enthusing other people.

I also want to spend more time working with clients on their digital strategy and reaching connected consumers. I want to help organisations become more user focused. I am looking forward to educating and fostering a new culture within companies. A culture focused on customer service.

In practice I suspect this will involve:

Alongside that I am going to be an advisor and sounding board for freelancers, digital leads and agency founders. The idea is to provide help and support in what are isolating roles.

Beyond that who knows! I might do some online courses or partner with some other company. That is what is so exciting (and terrifying) I couldn’t tell you exactly what my life is going to be like going forward.

But I have bought a new domain name so that makes everything alright –

How will this impact Headscape?

Not as much as you might think. Headscape will continue to do incredible design and development work. They will continue to do the in-depth research that helps set the digital direction of clients. Nothing will change.

After all it will be the same amazing team behind the scenes. Sure, I may be the person you associate most with Headscape. But I don’t do that much client work. I haven’t designed a website in years, not even this one!

The team at Headscape is one of the best in the industry. You only need to look at their work. What is more, it is a team with strong leadership. Marcus and Chris have years of experience delivering incredible websites. That is not going away just because I am no longer around every day.

Will you and Headscape still work together?

Absolutely! That is what is so exciting about this move. Rather than creating two competing businesses, we are creating two complementary ones.

I am not going to start designing websites and the research heavy consultancy work they do is just not my thing. As a result, I am sure I will be calling on their help.

Equally, they will still need my expertise in training and presenting business cases for digital transformation. They will also call upon my insights into digital strategy when they need it.

In short, I expect us to not only pass work back and forth, but work side by side on many occasions.

I have this project, who do I go to?

Well that depends on the project. If it is a straightforward design and build project then the answer is easy. Contact Headscape.

If you want an in-house trainer, writer or speaker then I am your man.

Things become a little more complicated if you want some consultancy, but not much. If you need some in-depth research done then I suggest Headscape. If you want a simple site review or a day or two of consultancy then try me first.

That said, it doesn’t matter. Contact whoever you want. We will always refer you to the other if we think that would be a better fit. Hell, you could even get both of us if you are lucky!

Will this change things with Boagworld?

Not really. For a start the podcast will remain unchanged. Marcus and myself will continue to host the show just like we always have. I also expect Headscape staff to continue posting here from time to time.

I will continue posting to Boagworld just the same as always. But there will be a few extra goodies added as well. More on that soon.

That said you might see the occasional bit of advertising sneak in as I struggle to pay the bills! I promise it won’t be too annoying. Also, check out the new header and footer. Now tailored to my new lifestyle.

When does this all happen?

I finish working for Headscape on a day-to-day basis at the end of January. After that I will have to feed my family myself! So if you have any work for me, I would love to hear from you.