My word. Two years. Really makes you think…do you deserve a blog? Probably not. Either way, that amount of time gives you some headlines to chat about – no filler here, nope.
The biggest news comes only a few months after the last post on this blog was published. After just over two years at Tangent Snowball, I decided to accept a role as Head of Front end Development at an energy supplier start-up called Octopus Energy. It may seem like a bit of a strange step going from a digital agency to the energy sector, but made sense to me for a few reasons:
- I had worked with some of the founders of the company before, at Tangent Snowball, and I was fully aware of just how talented they were. These included the Head of Engineering David Winterbottom who is one of the smartest people I’ve ever worked with, and Head of Customer Experience Pete Miller who, to be honest, could go and work in a swamp forming mud piles and I’d still happily go and join him.
- I missed the start-up life. My first job after university was working in a company of three people building tech that should have required a lot more people to achieve. Working in an agency was great fun but I never shifted that urge to help build something from scratch.
- It offered complete control. The front-end could be built from the ground up as I saw fit. This meant the end of a life of maintaining legacy code, and the chance to move forward with the times tech-wise (I have since been joined by the frankly exceptional Gilly Ames and am really glad to not be making all of those decisions on my own!)
- The CEO Greg Jackson is the greatest salesperson I’ve ever met and from the minute I sat down with him I didn’t really stand a chance – you become infected with his enthusiasm. It’s lucky he was convincing me to join something amazing really.
There is an awful lot I could write here but I’ll just hit the big stuff. I’ve been here for two years now, we’ve grown from five people in a room to well over a hundred across different offices and cities, we’re the official energy partner for Arsenal Football Club, we’ve spearheaded political discussion on an energy price cap to prevent families from being ripped off, created the industry’s first Tracker tariff that changes it’s price every day to reflect the wholesale cost of energy (and won a UK customer experience award for it), won 2017 supplier of the year at the Energy Awards, have one of the highest customer satisfaction scores in the industry on TrustPilot, and…actually this place has got me into coffee so it’s been an awful decision to join here. Nevermind.
p.s. we’re always looking for talented people. Sent an email over to email@example.com if you’re interested.
New side project!
As all of the above doesn’t sound particularly time consuming, I decided to take on a side project and am Head of web over at Premier Battles, a new team-based rap battle league in the U.K. This will sound random to everyone apart from people that know me. I’ve been a massive fan of battle rap for years, and I couldn’t pass up the chance to work on a brand new league wanting to build their own tech and take the scene in a direction it’s never gone before. As a bonus, it’s run by Shotty Horroh and Bison Briggz, two people I’ve been a fan of since I started watching Don’t Flop…it’s actually still a little weird to get messages from them if I’m honest, but I’m playing it cool.
This project actually offers a lot of similar things to Octopus Energy, I think there’s a pattern here…
New website design!
As is customary with almost every web developer I know, I came across my website after a couple of years and audibly shouted “OH GOD. GOD NO. WHAT WERE YOU THINKING?! THIS IS A REPRESENTATION OF YOU!!! KILL IT NOW YOU FOOL!!!” or something to that effect.
So I updated my website design, whilst simultaneously trying to convince people that I wasn’t doing it because I was looking for a new job. I stripped away a lot of unnecessary content, cleaned up the look and feel, and here we are! I actually considered doing away with the blog as well, but I think a mixture of guilt and nostalgic meant it had to stay.
New place to write!
During my time at Tangent Snowball, I got the opportunity to write for a couple of other websites which I really enjoyed, and it’s one of the last things I wrote about before my blogging hiatus. Recently, through my friend Matt Crouch, I wrote a tutorial (which I’ll talk about in a later post) in Web Designer Magazine which was fascinating for two reasons
- It reminded me that I love writing about coding and best practices.
- It acted as a reminder that to write about something you have to know every little thing about it, and that’s always a fun opportunity to refresh your own knowledge.
And there you have it. I’ve made myself a promise to keep this up to date with smaller posts but more often. I haven’t searched this blog but I’m fairly sure I’ve written this exact sentence on here before… Be that as it may, that’s the plan! Until next time…