The Fetch Blog

The best events and reads for professionals

Promoted event: Content Development for Social Media, Marketing Women, Melbourne — May 23, 2014

Promoted event: Content Development for Social Media, Marketing Women, Melbourne

563173_412372092225329_1230469195_n

What attributes of content lead to social sharing? How do we drive engagement on social?

The Marketing Women Inc. Masterclass event: Content Development for Social Media on Wednesday 4 June, will address these questions and more.

There are two social media gurus presenting at the event: Sasha Cunningham and Katrina Loughrey.

Sasha_photoKatLoughrey-2

Sasha has recently been appointed as Edge’s Senior Strategic Planner. Sasha explains that her move to Edge has been so she can focus on content marketing strategy and lead their social media offering.

Her current clients, specifically in social include AAMI, Optus, Secure Pay (an Australia Post company), Australian Unity, Bacardi and Lesson Zone.

Katrina Loughrey brings over 10 years experience as a communications and digital professional. She currently juggles the management of the Victoria Racing Club’s digital portfolio as well as being a curator of The Fetch Melbourne.

The event kicks off with plenty of networking time while enjoying some nibbles and drinks. Remember to bring along your business cards, so you can go into the draw to win a fabulous prize on the night.

Come and hear from the experts!

Register before May 28 at the early bird rate on the Marketing Women Inc website.

Featured job: Client Whisperer, Apostrophe Copywriters, Melbourne — May 11, 2014

Featured job: Client Whisperer, Apostrophe Copywriters, Melbourne

George-Clooney-OMEGA

Apostrophe Copywriters – Melbourne’s first copywriting collective – is on the hunt for a mid-weight Client Whisperer. Discover more below.

A not-so-traditional role.
Primarily, they’re after someone who’s good with people –­­­­­­ an inspiring communicator who’s well connected in the design, digital, corporate, new business or branding world (or can be with very little effort).

You know the kind – able to deliver a pitch with the charm of Clooney, the clarity of Tim Ferris and the warmth of Oprah. A triple threat communications pro.

Must possess super powers.
The candidate doesn’t have to wear a cape or anything, but must be super brainy, super malleable and super dedicated. A day in the life of an Apostrophe Client Whisperer might include writing briefs, meeting writers, drinking caffeine, and then flicking the switch on the right brain for some off-the-cuff thinking.

The more versatile you are, the better. Play the guitar? Fly a plane? Bake cupcakes? Right on.

Nest34

Socks up.
A good attitude isn’t enough. It needs to be frickin’ amazing. Deeply collaborative with an entrepreneurial spark, this person must have a passion for people and a willingness to learn. Kudos and constructive criticism are valued equally.

The power of one.
While Apostrophe is made up of 25 writers, there will be times where the candidate will be working solo, so he/she must love his/her own company. Insert clap (or high five for one) here.

Short (or long term)
At this stage, they’re after someone for three months. In saying that, if KPIs are met they’d like to make this a full-time role.

They’ll give you:

  • A trampoline to jump as high as you want to
  • An inspiring office space (in Thornbury) buzzing with startups and entrepreneurs
  • A decent wage based on your hard work, profile and experience
  • The chance to work with a kick-ass team of wordsmiths
  • The opportunity to rename your job title
  • The freedom to do your work exceptionally well.

Nice-to-have.
While agency background (digital, branding, design or advertising) is a plus, it’s definitely not a mandatory. They know skills are transferrable and the right person will be able to shimmy them over better than Tina Turner herself.

If you feel like you have the right stuff, email them at jobs@weareapostrophe.com.au.

They’d like to see a CV and some creative answers to the questions below.

  1. What are the three words that summarise your higher purpose?
  2. What’s your favourite word?
  3. How would you connect with a person who didn’t want to be connected with?
Interview: London local, Rob Symington, Escape the City co-founder — May 4, 2014

Interview: London local, Rob Symington, Escape the City co-founder

bw1

“Too many startups chase quick success and funding. I think ideas and teams need to gestate… It takes guts to think long-term.”

Louise Potter catches up with Rob Symington, co-founder of Escape the City.

What inspired you to create Escape the City?

I met my co-founder, Dom Jackman, when we were both working as management consultants in “the City” – London’s financial heartland. We were inspired by our own frustrations with the corporate career ladder – too much meaningless work all aimed at a one-dimensional pursuit of profit. Bored and ambitious, we wanted to spend our careers working on things that mattered to us. When we realised that we were far from the only people to feel this way, we decided to start a community for all the other people who aspired to build careers outside the corporate mainstream.

How is it positioned differently from other careers sites?

Whereas most career sites align to a sector (ie. tech) or a skillset (ie. developers), we align to an emotion – namely that feeling that life is too short to do work that doesn’t matter to you. We’re also a community first and a business second. Our bible is Tribes by Seth Godin. We didn’t invent this emotion, we simply chose to put a flag in the sand for anyone who feels the same way. Fortunately for us, many people do, and over 140,000 people have joined Escape the City in pursuit of careers that matter (to them and the world).

Startup life is a long way from the city. What’s been the biggest adjustment to make from leaving the corporate world?

The buck stops with you in a startup. In the corporate world you can almost always count on someone else being ultimately accountable for a problem. The other adjustment, which is a positive one, is that we’re massively more productive working in a startup. In the corporate world there was so much work for work’s sake. Now everything we do (and we do a lot of work) is directly aligned to achieving our goals.

You crowdfunded £600,000 to build Escape the City – were you happy with this approach in hindsight?

Absolutely. We had a real head vs. heart decision to make when we turned down one of London’s top VCs to raise investment from our own members. No regrets at all. Escape’s brand stands for rejecting the mainstream and doing things differently. It would have been pretty rich if we’d gone straight back to the corporate world for our funding.

If you had to pick a job that’s been featured what would it be?

I have always loved working and travelling in Africa. One of the very first jobs we listed on Escape was for a project manager to work with the Rwandan government to setup a careers service for Rwandan graduates. It’s a job I would have loved to do. Esc was still just a side-project at that point and I remember my business partner, Dom, jokingly warning me against applying for the first opportunity that came across our radars! Almost five years on and I’m glad I didn’t.

What’s the best thing about working in London?

There is so much opportunity in London. There are so many people and there is so much positive energy. We could never have launched Esc I the way that we did in a smaller city.

What other startups are doing work that you admire – and why?

I love what the guys at Maptia are building. Straight out of uni and coding their platform themselves. They have been brave enough to take the long route to build a business that they control 100% in pursuit of a big, long-term vision. They lived in Morocco for a year to keep costs down.

Too many startups chase quick success and funding. I think ideas and teams need to gestate. The great thing about the internet is that it has massively democratised entrepreneurship.However this also means that as first-time founders, we often don’t know what we’re doing in the early days, so keeping our business alive long enough to learn important lessons is really important. It takes guts to think long-term.

Who would be your perfect boss?

Seth Godin. Or Eric Cantona. They’re both artists and they’re both brave enough to be different. In a world of uniformity that can’t be underestimated. I think the best bosses find talented people who share their values and then trust them to solve difficult challenges.

Where do you escape to?

I live on a narrowboat with my fiancé and a cat called Jack who thinks he is a pirate. We don’t have a TV and we don’t have wifi. So when I’m at home I’m (for the most part) unplugged. Living as we do, constantly connected, we’re all overstimulated. I find it’s really important to be present and be still and reconnect with my immediate surroundings whenever I can.

What updates can we look for next on Escape the City?

I’m currently on the look out for a permanent venue for The Escape School in London. The Escape School is our education arm where we produce talks and courses on the subjects of unconventional careers, startups and adventure. Watch this space!

About our writer // Louise Potter is the curator of The Fetch London. She also writes things Contagious and teaches things at General Assembly. Follow her via @louisepotter_.

Featured job: evening host, Hub Melbourne, Australia —

Featured job: evening host, Hub Melbourne, Australia

5834884964_6e4cda810small

Do you love innovation and the idea of coworking, collaboration and community? Do you love bringing some order to things, and connecting with and supporting amazing people? Are you committed to exceptional customer experiences?

If yes, then please read on.

Hub Melbourne is a professional member community that drives innovation through collaboration. They’re now looking for an evening host.

It’s made up of individuals, startups, social enterprises and large corporate, government and education institutes. At our centre is a ‘clubhouse’ – a coworking and innovation space on Bourke Street. They are part of a global network of almost 60 similar ‘Hubs’ around the world.

At the heart of Hub Melbourne is a core team of dedicated individuals whose role is to create an environment where diverse people, organisations and sectors come together, work on projects, swap ideas and innovate. They do this by hosting physical and online collaboration spaces, curating events for learning and networking and catalysing connections for our members. They’re constantly !innovating new ways to work and do business.

_D5V2153

Their values are: Open, Collaborative, Autonomous, and Entrepreneurial.

Overview of the role:

An awesome evening host to collaborate with the team on all facets of the business.

Your role will involve:

  • Providing a welcoming environment for Hub members and space users
  • Supporting Hub members to ensure their Hub experience is an awesome and successful one
  • Space beautification
  • Events setup and breakdown
  • Daily coworking space reset at end of day
  • IT support (shared with day host)
  • Identifying and implementing continuous improvement processes and procedures
  • Working as part of a dynamic duo with the day host

For this role, you must:

  • Dig the idea of innovation and collaboration (this is a deal breaker!)
  • Understand and participate in the digital world
  • Have a willingness to teach others
  • Have excellent research and networking skills – know the right places to look and people to ask
  • Be super-organized, flexible, process-oriented, and open-minded  Be willing to jump in and help wherever needed
  • Have a passion for space beautification
  • Be a hospitality super person with high standards of space cleanliness

What’s in it for you?

  • You’ll be a key member of an energetic and fun small core team
  • Enabling an inspiring and diverse network of over 200 people in-house and 7,000 people globally
  • Being part of a company with a vision and plan to make a difference
  • Working from one of the coolest workplaces in town (12.30-9.30pm, some flexibility with hours)
  • A full-time role based on Bourke Street
  • This role provides you with $55K incl. super plus phone allowance and professional development allowance

How to apply:

Please submit a two-minute video on why you would love to work with Hub Melbourne, plus a LinkedIn profile to:

Full job details: http://bit.ly/HubMelbourne

Interview: San Francisco local, Paul Biggar, founder of CircleCI —

Interview: San Francisco local, Paul Biggar, founder of CircleCI

Paul Biggar

“The best things we did to be successful were to spend a lot of time talking to customers before building the product, and to focus on making a truly excellent product. We spent way more time there than on sales and marketing, and that made a real impact.”

Kate Kendall talks programming, startup lessons, the Irish tech scene and San Francisco life with Paul Biggar, founder of CircleCI.

Having been based in San Francisco for some time now, have you found it has changed much over the past few years?

The main difference is how ubiquitous tech is. SoMa is bursting with startups, rents are through the roof, the market for developers is skyrocketing, and venture money is everywhere. When I started coming here in 2009, there was a lot of tech, but it wasn’t quite popping the way it is now. And the resentment (around Google buses, etc) certainly wasn’t there.

You have worked extensively on dynamic scripting languages. Why do you think their importance has grown in software development?

I attribute it largely to the rise of the web, and also because of a dissatisfaction with Java. When the web as a platform (“Web 2.0″) was really taking off in about 2005-ish, there was massive frustration with Java. Up until that point, there were limited alternatives, and if you weren’t using Java you were probably using Perl (which was frustrating in different ways). That’s when PHP and Python and Ruby really started taking off.

Python had been slowly growing in popularity for about a decade. PHP had become the defacto language for individuals to build websites, since it was incredibly easy to deploy them. The Ruby on Rails came along and really took the world by storm. By 2009, a vast majority of new startups were using Rails, something still true today, even though there are many more options now than back then.

Most of the frustration from static languages came from inflexibility – Java was a giant ecosystem of heavyweight components, and an ugly type system. By contrast, dynamic languages were freeing. It was an easy sell.

You are a co-founder of CircleCI, a hosted continuous deployment provider, how would you describe the benefits of CI to a less technical team/person?

Developers write code, and every time they do, CircleCI automatically tests their code to make sure it still works (that’s “Continuous Integration”). It’s a productivity tool for developer teams, that lets developers ship code much faster, meaning they get their products to market faster, and keep them more reliable.

What have been some of the hardest challenges you’ve faced to date and what insights do you now have from navigating them?

Every three months brings new challenges. The challenge you have as a two person startup trying to get some adoption is a different challenge from being a 14-person startup with thousands of customers and millions in revenue. I’ve spent a lot of time looking forward to figure out what the challenges are going to be three and six months from now, and asking other founders and CEOs what the future is going to look like.

I would say the hardest thing is getting to traction. Once we got to a million in annual revenue, the future became fairly straightforward and was well carved out. But that journey to make sure we had a product that was useful, find customers for it, try to get them to pay, etc, that was a hard journey.

The best things we did to be successful were to spend a lot of time talking to customers before building the product, and to focus on making a truly excellent product. We spent way more time there than on sales and marketing, and that made a real impact. Nothing helps a customer make a decision like a recommendation from their friend, and the higher the quality of the product, the more likely that is to happen.

Do you think your previous company NewsTilt was before its time?

Yes and no. NewsTilt was predicated on the idea that journalism was becoming more niche. Instead of a reader going to a newspaper for all their news, they’d read news from many smaller sites related to their interests, like TechCrunch, or The Fetch, or other small-ish communities built around niche topics. That prediction was totally correct, in my opinion.

The other side of this is that while we anticipated the problem, I’m not sure we got the solution right. We were trying to build a platform where we’d solve all of a journalist’s problems in trying to achieve that, like distribution, revenue, etc. Nobody else has done what we were trying to do, so its hard to see if it would have really solved the problem today. Companies like Medium and Svbtle are doing well with high quality publishing and better tools for publishers, but are not really looking at community as part of their platforms.

What’s the Irish tech scene like? Do people feel they need to move to the US to build a global company?

Dublin has a nice tech scene now. There’s a lot of people building products and tools and starting companies. It wasn’t that way when I left in 2010. One of the major changes since then has been the massive explosion of US companies setting up in Ireland. Dublin was always a tech hub, and Google very famously set up there, but in the last few years about 40 large US companies like Yahoo, Facebook, Hubspot, Zynga, Dropbox, etc, have all set up there too.

During the mid-2000s, when the Celtic Tiger was booming, tech wasn’t a very glamorous profession, unlike finance and real estate which were major drivers of the economy. Now, developer salaries are rising, tech is booming, and most of the rest of the economy still hasn’t recovered. So tech is important and interesting now in a way that it never was before.

There is a lot of debate in Ireland about whether you have to move to the US and to San Francisco to build your company. I suspect its the same debate being played out in New York and Austin and London and Berlin, with the caveat that emigrating for better opportunity has been something the Irish have done for hundreds of years.

Whether or not to move has the same factors in every city: does your market and company and product benefit from being in SF, through access to capital, customers base, press, engineering talent, startup experience, etc. I’m a firm believer that the best thing an Irish investor can do to help their company is to buy the founders a one-way ticket to SF.

Where’s your favorite place to relax in San Francisco?

This sounds a bit lame, but my most relaxing time is walking my dog near my apartment in SoMa. We live just by the Bay Bridge and walk down to AT&T Park along Embarcadero and under the Bay Bridge.

What local events do you recommend checking out?

Once your company starts kicking off, you kinda stop going to that many events any more. I really enjoyed going to tech meetups once I got to SF, and then more once I started using them to network and find customers and early hires. Once CircleCI really took off, I’ve mostly stopped going to meetups, with the exception of particularly high quality events, in particular events where successful operators are presenting. 

For me, the best recent events I’ve been to are at Heavybit and Y Combinator, both of which are unfortunately members-only.

About our writer // Kate Kendall is the founder of The Fetch and CloudPeeps. She also blogs about startup life and advises businesses on the role of community. Follow her via @katekendall.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 606 other followers

%d bloggers like this: