58 years ago today we dared to go there. well said by @darrenrovell: no matter what we've done since then, and no matter how far technology has evolved, I still can't believe when I look up at the moon at night that we dared to go up there.
we're hiring a full-time office manager! (link in bio!)
SDC member profile. It's Rashidi Barnett (@honorthytailor). Photos by SDC member @chilstudios. Tell us a little bit about yourself-
I call myself a performance marketer -- I've built a career in helping clients drive conversions for their businesses. From EarthLink to AOL and most recently Google, I've spent nearly 15 years inside of tech companies. My first day Google was when they launched their own design for self driving cars, and I worked at AOL when they acquired Huffington Post, Engadget and Techrunch. I was also an employee with Atlanta-based Nebo and watched them grow from building web sites and launching search campaigns to one of the top marketing firms in the southeast.
These experiences left me with deep knowledge in understanding digital marketing strategy and a desire to use my experience and expertise to help startups with product development and strategic marketing that drives conversions and leads. I've been working with startups since January 2017 and I'm having the time of my life.... while also partnering with my wife to raise two awesome boys under five.
You've worked in some big organizations, could you give us a few things you've learned from those experiences?
Leadership and company culture are extremely important.
I've worked at companies in different stages of their lifecycle. The consistent lesson in each experience: Leadership has to be able to encourage open and honest conversations about the company direction.
Google had a weekly Global All Hands meeting, led by the founders Larry and Sergey, that kept all employees in the loop on what the company was working on, and why. I was in the know and always felt like what I was doing on a day to day basis was supporting the overall mission. This has been part of the company's culture since its early days.
It's important to think about your company's culture from the start and determine what type of people you want to bring on. Do they fit in with your company's beliefs? Are you building a culture where employees can challenge their managers without fear of retaliation? How do you encourage and provide a forum for innovation?
@switchyards members tend to be a creative lot. in this example, @evansmade_ turned an every day webster's into "the power book" charging station and left it in western & atlantic for people to use. brilliant.
You've been part of a few start-up ventures in your life, what have you learned from those experiences?
The popular wisdom is that failure teaches you how to be better the next go around. Which is true, I'm sure. But for me, failure has taught me to be resilient. I've had multiple failures in my life -- from getting kicked out of college for grades to seeing startups I started or worked at go under. In each of those instances, I learned something about myself but the most important thing I learned is to keep moving. Forward momentum is everything in life to me.
Everyone knows you for your laid back personality. Has that had any effect on you in the start-up world?
Anyone who follows me on social media knows that I'm a pretty light hearted dude and when stacked up against my contemporaries in the startup community I look like an oddball. There have been times in my career where I think "TJ, be more serious! you can be a thought leader too!" and then I realize....I don't care about that. I like being true to myself. And when you're absolutely true to who you are success comes a bit easier.
What’s something about you that we don’t know?
I'm good as hell at dancing.
let there be life on the street
lines of varying lengths
In 2014 when we were just a twinkle in Atlanta's eye, we made a shirt with this Made With Soul in Atlanta design (@dustintanner!) and people loved it. Still see them around the city all the time. We're re-making it for the next #madeinatlanta, our monthly brand event with @alternativeapparel. We're welcoming Atlanta's @hirezstudios to the main stage July 20. RSVP on switchyards.com.