A glass of Thinking Juice with Paul Bird

Next to swirl his glass and tell us about himself is Digital Developer, Paul. Paul loves beer and ale, he plays the drums and makes "uselessly funny dev things" (out of hours)...

Do you think technology improves or interrupts our lives?

I believe technology is a double-edged sword. While it has made our lives easier, it has also added substantial complications. I think it’s about adding in the value of technology without making it disruptive, which is a challenge in itself. I felt like the Google Glass was a great attempt, but the world wasn’t ready.

What is your career end goal?

I hope my career never ends! My job was my hobby first. There are some milestones I’d like to hit along the way, the biggest one being that I want to build something that helps people and makes lives easier and more enriched.

What excites you most about your industry?

I love how quickly it changes, the speed that we all react to it, and how we all give the power to shape it, which means that we can realise our ideas much quicker.

How do you keep your skills sharp?

My job keeps my skills pretty sharp. We always try to push what we can do and I’m never told we shouldn’t do something because it’s a bit more ‘out there’ than normal. If we’re not actively pushing our capabilities forward, we’ll never make anything better. I keep my skills sharp by experimenting with the latest tech stuff and learn from that.

What is your philosophy at work?

My philosophy is to always do good work. It’s something I strongly believe in. You might be thinking ‘why not perfect work?’, but that’s because it’s unachievable and I’m a realistic kind of person. One of Thinking Juice’s founding principles is “Do Great Work” which was actually one of my biggest motives to come and work here. I feel like my purpose is nicely aligned.

Why did you want to be in our industry?

I never really knew I wanted to be in this industry, I just kind of found my way into it. I started learning to code at age 14 and learnt how to design websites too. I realised I thrive when I’m solving problems and that’s what I feel like this industry is about, especially in the development half. It’s all about the problem solving and I love that.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given – professionally or personally?

I believe that networking is always key. Sometimes it really is about who you know. Go to networking events, talk and be passionate about what you do and you are putting yourself in the best stead to outshine other people. Never stop being passionate about what you do because people really notice that stuff.

What’s your Thinking Juice?

A green tea is always a good start. However, I recall that a glass of wine got me through a heavy duty mental ‘block’ when coming up with my final year project idea.