Welcome! This is the first in a series of blog style interviews I’ll be publishing on the site, so this week who better to kick it off than… me?
Normally at this point we’d ask our special guest to tell us in their own words…
This is how I work.
Business Location: Paintworks, Bristol.
Current Venture: BrisTechTonic
What one rule you stick to in your business: Relate to your client.
Current mobile phone: iPhone XR 64GB (Mainly because the battery life is excellent)
Current computer: MacBook Pro 13″
First off, thanks for agreeing to do this with me! Tell me a bit about your background and how you ended up where you are today:
Hi Chris! Well as you know, I’m Chris. In my 15 years of IT, I’ve gone on what most would call a typical progression in the IT Industry. I started on an IT Helpdesk, resetting passwords and fixing problems to working in support role for a larger organisation, travelling and living in Bremen, Germany implementing large ERP systems and assisting in End User Computing (How you use your laptops in a corporate environment in a nutshell). From here I set up a previous business in my homeland of Wales supporting local Hotels with their IT.
I worked with other organisations supporting systems and becoming the technical point of contact for many things… I then took the brave leap to becoming an IT Architect. I’ve gone from fixing and building to talking to people and customers to gather requirements and translating those to the tech team to build – a middle man if you will. I’ve loved doing this and here I am today… running BrisTechTonic. In Bristol. Did I tell you I’ve found my new home on this side of the Bridge? I wouldn’t change it for the world. I moved for a girl, it’s not just a story you hear in movies. I live here with my Fiancé Jen and our house rabbit, Daisy. She rules the house with an iron fist demanding broccoli.
My mission statement is simple… to provide every small business with affordable resources that make a valuable difference.
What tools do you use to help get you through the day?
I live by Apps and online tools. For time keeping I use Clockify.Me – it’s an incredibly powerful free tool to keep track of time spent on projects or with clients.
What’s your working environment setup like?
I’ve got a pretty basic arrangement. I have a desk with a monitor and a storage cabinet where I keep some personal items. I work completely paperless and everything is in the cloud. It’s a nice neat feeling.
What’s your best productivity shortcut or life hack?
Automation. Anything that takes you time to do, figure out a way to automate it. Personally, the only work I have to do in my business is spend time with my clients and schedule social media posts once a month – absolutely everything else is automated!
How do you keep your to-do list in check?
Todoist is my go to list manager, there are free and paid for versions – I’ve even got my Google Home linked up to it so I can shout at it to add milk to my shopping list.
What do you listen to while you work? Any Playlists you can recommend?
I definitely prefer to work in silence when my work requires strategic thinking. When I’m sketching a design of architectural drawing I enjoy listening to some upbeat tracks on Spotify… my go to play list normally has some Fleetwood Mac or Brothers Osborne on it though!
What are you currently reading? Or what’s something you’d recommend?
Personally, I struggle reading for enjoyment – I haven’t got the attention span. My working day revolves reading articles and papers that are really informative but also brain straining. I enjoy listening to Podcasts or listening to audiobooks to wind down.
For personal consumption I’m currently enjoying The Horne Section Podcast By Alex Horne & The Horne Section and Shagged Married Annoyed by Rosie & Chris Ramsey.
For business related consumption… I quite enjoy The Digital Marketing Podcast – this area is new to me so I’m really enjoying learning about how to showcase my business because at the end of the day, you’re buying me and my services – I just have to learn how to sell that!
For my motivation and lightbulb moments, it’s On Purpose with Alex Beadon. Great, great podcast. I look forward to every Monday when it comes out.
How do you wind down?
This is probably something I struggle with the most… my mind is always going a hundred miles an hour but what I have found works is cooking, being a tourist in what still feels like a new city to me and planning our next adventure.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
On a personal level, you can only do what you can do. I used to work all the hours burning myself out. Putting yourself and your own health first is key.
From a professional standpoint, a colleague of mine from Bremen once told me… if you have to travel some distance for an early morning meeting (by plane, train or auto mobile) – go the night before. You won’t be at your best at that 9am if you’ve already spent half a day travelling. Go there well rested, you’ll be a better you.
And there you have it, that was me and that’s how I work. If anything you’ve read in this post sparks an interest – it’s something BrisTechTonic can probably help with! Our goal is to help entrepreneurs and small businesses make that leap and get their business moving. Why not get in touch with us today to see how we can help?