Ethics is unbelievably important in and even outside the world of design. It’s a standard that every individual should live by and have regardless of your background, birth, nationality, etc. Even individuals in groups widely accepted such as the salvation army or frowned upon in such as the Taliban, Al-Qaeda and others have some form of Ethical code they operate on that forms the basis of who they are, what they stand for, and what they hope to achieve. To put it simply it’s practically what separates Humans from the basic creatures of the animal kingdom. While I was checking out the many links and articles about designers and ethics and a few points stood out to me. One example was the article from the design shack link (https://designshack.net/articles/business-articles/why-every-designer-needs-a-code-of-ethics/) it was an excerpt from the Academy of design professionals that read as: “Design professionals Shall not, in the conduct of their professional practice, knowingly or unknowingly violate the law.”. I agree on not knowingly breaking the law, but something is unknowingly done because you as a person were ignorant of it. You can’t promise to not do something you weren’t even aware of, the unknowingly portion should be removed in my opinion. I’m sure the Academy of design professionals means well but your ethical code should be achievable. I also took note of the Ethics of design article in the links (https://ethicsofdesign.wordpress.com/summary/). It mentioned how ethics is “often overruled by financial issues or the prospect of career progression.” This is 100% true and unfortunate; there are those who will do anything for the sake of their carriers regardless of what it means for others and even themselves later down the long road of life. The finance bit is a bit sad though since one can’t live in the streets and needs to eat. It’s sad but I’m also aware living an ethical code may not lead you down a gold paved road of success but you’ll probably be able to sleep comfortably and maybe avoid a massive lawsuit down the road which is counter intuitive if money was your end goal. I also found it’s excerpt on the Carex(PZ Cussons) brand at the forefront of UK hand-sanitation to be an interesting situation regarding Ethics. They apparently used fear mongering to push their product during pandemics to essentially up their products sales with full knowledge that such a campaign isn’t good for anyone’s mental health and can even have detrimental effects from overuse. They even prayed on families fears for the wellbeing of their children. Some would say it was necessary but like most cases like this we find out it wasn’t many years or a decade after the fact when the damage is done and those affiliated have dispersed; Never seems to be anyone around to protect one from their “protectors”. I found this interesting simply because of our current pandemic and how it will be remembered 10 plus years down the line.

Projects 3 – Book Covers

As I mentioned once in an earlier post, Ms. Wolfe has her 3 keys to an abundant business: Ask Powerfully, Give Wholeheartedly, and Receive Graciously. This book cover was intended for her 1st key which is “Ask Powerfully”. This and her future books would be part of her Entrepreneur Accelerator Series. When I was presented with the project I figured it was time to just dive in and get as creative as possible and pump out design after design. This sort of still occurred but I wasn’t aware that she had a previous book created that was also part of the series. This was where the guidelines or shackles as some would call it came into effect. Since it’s a series I couldn’t make the covers to different from the 1st one she made. Ultimately, I ended up using the same font for the title and went for a simple main image like her 1st book cover. I made well over 40+ versions but as you can see I’ve selected 5 with varying changes so I don’t end up covering the entire post with images. We went with a simple silhouette because her 1st book used a simple light bulb and we wanted some consistency. We did try to keep the hand of the silhouette pointing towards asking and also keep their colors similar. the sub text also changed when comparing to earlier versions from those near the end. I may have wanted to do a bit more but ultimately I’m just bringing her vision of a book cover to life. Since she was pleased I consider it a win.

Projects 2 – Thumbnails

After checking out Ms. Wolfe YouTube page I realized that she didn’t have any thumbnails. She used the randomly generated thumbnails that the site provided for her. They didn’t look to great so I decided to try designing up a few to help give her page a more modern look. I originally tried to implement a city in the background but she felt that it seemed to busy so I kept decreasing its size but ultimately we removed it and went for a solid color instead.

Projects 1 – Videos

I edited several of Ms. Wolfe’s videos for YouTube. The edits ranged a bit from video to video. For her podcasts I usually ended up taking the audio from most of them and created thumbnails for them to be placed on YouTube. I also applied captions on a few videos since YouTubes randomly generated captions are absolutely terrible. It takes a bit of time so I only do it for the shorter videos. This ultimately leads into another Project I completed for her which was the creation of a standard universal thumbnail.

What I’m learning and doing – 4 (Organizing, Consistency, and Shared documentation)

This may not initially seem like much but it’s actually new for me. Prior to this I usually just did work for a friend or family member. That meant that we usually kept in contact very informally compared to what I’m doing with Ms. Wolfe. My friends and family were obviously fine with whatever time I would message them and on some occasions I would message them at 2 or 3 am regarding the work. Ms. Wolfe has working hours so I had to work within them and we usually gave each other a heads up if something related to a scheduling occurred. We also made extensive use of google drive for sending and storing files and documentation related to the work. This was more rigid than what I’m used to but a useful habit to build in retrospect.

What I’m learning and doing – 3(Pod cast searching)

While working with Ms. Wolfe she explained to me that she frequently makes use of podcasts. She uses them to spread word of her books as well as her methods on coaching. Whenever I had spare time I would go to either PodMatch or MatchMaker and search for podcasts related to entrepreneurs, Business, coaching, etc. Anything that was a good fit for the information that she would dispense. Most usually did respond and set up potential screening dates. After she finishes the interviews I would then add It to her site and YouTube page.

What I’m learning and doing – 2 (Maximizer)

While Working Ms. Wolfe She taught me how to use Maximizer. I had never even heard of it or even seen a Customer Relationship Manager prior to her mentioning it and showing it to me. She had to give me a quick breakdown and after a couple solo uses I was able to get the hang of it, Luckily it was very user friendly. She provided me with a login and explained to me how to actually use the software to keep track of emails as well as start a campaign. The email tracker is fairly good at keeping track of emails across multiple accounts and can be used to quickly gather information about a specific individual you’ve been emailing as well as search for any addresses or contact info you may have on them for quick access. It was fairly interesting to see how easy it was to gather all this information from so many people; If her company has this much info and it’s relatively small then the bigger ones like google and Facebook are pretty much sitting on a gold mine of user information. They probably use something similar to Maximizer or their own in house version. I also wrote up a few of her campaigns and sent them out. I was taught how to create almost a months worth of automated emails for client updates; Took less than 15 minutes so now I know through use how easy spam can be created if someone wanted to make some. I could see this software being very useful for any major company, private business or even a solo entrepreneur just for the organization and storing and gathering of user info. I could see myself using this later down the road.

What I’m learning and doing – 1 (site maintenance)

I’ve been maintaining her two Websites by updating Her Posts, articles, videos, etc. I’ve touched word press once or twice but I’ve had to use it almost daily now which is helping with building familiarity with the software; Luckily it’s not rocket science and is fairly user friendly. Luckily openlabs layout is more or less just WordPress reskinned so that(and some assignments) helped in getting me to actually make us it. She usually sends me the topic and content she wants posted and then I put it up as well as create the tags. I also check comments and respond in most cases if the question is simple enough or bring it to Ms. Wolfe’s attention if the question requires information that only she could know.

Work place culture

I want to assume that the attire at Ms. Wolfes office is Business casual but due to covid restrictions we’ve been meeting and handling work through Zoom and google drives. I’ve seen the office in the background of are calls and based on her attire I’m going with business casual as the norm for her operation. When we meet I usually wear a polo shirt but usually I wear shirt I wore during my morning job which is usually business casual attire similar to what she wears. luckily since it’s a zoom call I can easily swap out my jeans with some sweatpants or shorts since she can’t see my legs; She may be doing something similar herself. Her work station actually looks relatively neat and I can even see the second computer that I theoretically would have been using If I worked from her office. Since were remote I usually Meet her on zoom twice a week for 2 hours and do work anywhere from 2 to 3 hours a day and email her updates with any work or information I have for her. Usually I start at 3pm but every now and then I start a bit later but I make sure to put down the 2 or 3 hours a day that we agreed on. Due to the flexibility I can effectively eat lunch at any point before I start, as I’m working, or after I’m finished for the day. It’s flexible but I still have to report in with a daily update so that usually keeps me relatively focused and adds some element of structure to the whole process.

My Role

My role is that of a design intern. My supervisor is the owner, Ms. Wolfe. I ended up selecting this company because it was one of the few that actually responded to me within a reasonable amount of time. I actually stumbled upon it because it was posted on the design internship page in OpenLab and for whatever reason the contact info wasn’t posted so I ended up emailing Ms. Goetz about it and she explained to me that I was the first person to mention it. She provided me with the info so I ended up reaching out to her first. We ended up having an Interview on zoom because of the obvious complications and difficulties that come with an in person visit during a pandemic. I believe the interview went fairly well since I got the internship and I’m typing about it now. We discussed a range of the usual interview topics such as my career goals, interests, experience, and looked at some of my past work as a reference to see what I could bring to the table. When all was said and done she responded with a yes a week after the interview.