Steve Hill, Creative director, The BIG Partnership - What Technology makes your life easier? | Glasgow Chamber of Commerce
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Steve Hill, Creative director, The BIG Partnership - What Technology makes your life easier?

Three things; laptop, phone and The laptop (Macbook Pro) allows me to work anywhere, which is handy when you spend time in one of five offices and on the train. My phone (OnePlus 5T) has a great camera for grabbing inspiration on the go. And (collaboration tool) is great for online access to our work and having the ability to comment, add stimulus and sign-off on projects, wherever I am.

Is there any new technology that you are using to help productivity/communications?

We’ve actually gone the other way, with pencils, pens and paper forming the first stage of any creative response. All too often creatives will jump onto their Mac and create something that might look polished  but doesn’t answer the brief in the way it should, or could. Using paper allows a stream of quick sketches and doesn’t lock you into one or two ideas but acts as a springboard for further thoughts.

What websites/apps/magazines/newspapers do you turn to for inspiration?

My job is to get people engaged and enthused with what we are proposing to solve their business problem. To that end you can get inspiration from anywhere - from Brexit and hot dogs through to 80s toys and tracking the flight of bumble bees. I do like Monocle (both the magazine and the website) and Wired is pretty good for what’s coming next. I also like a browse through very niche titles (think Trainspotters Gazette, Chicken Fancier etc) to get an insight into different folks’ worlds. 

What book(s) should everyone in business be reading?

I’d recommend Nudge (Thaler & Sunstein) and Black Box Thinking (Matthew Syed). A great read for anyone, whether you think you’re creative or not, is One + One Equals Three from Dave Trott. Lots of great anecdotes of how creative thinking has solved big problems. In fact anything by Dave Trott is well worth a read.

What do you do that helps you boost your productivity or save time?

Clichéd, but coffee and running. Getting out for a run (preferably trail) gives you time to think and can give a fresh perspective on that day’s issues. In the office I have a V60, which makes a good coffee. The ritual of making the coffee again allows time to think, away from a desk. 

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Choose your battles. It’s also a piece of advice I’ve regularly given to other creatives who are hungry to impress but are perhaps directing their passion into a project with a predetermined outcome. There are times when the stars align (the client understands the process) and great work gets out into the big wild world. Make the most of those opportunities. 

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