Meet the Staff: Angela Conlon
What’s your role at Unit Interactive?
I am co-owner of Unit Interactive, which means I wear many hats. Apart from the shared responsibilities of running the business, I am also project manager, information architect, designer, and front-end developer for all projects I take on. I also collaborate, brainstorm and critique with my Unit colleagues.
Why did you decide to start your
After working for another web agency, I came to love working for the web and designing solutions for a wide variety of clients, but I recognized pitfalls and bad habits that prevented the agency from reaching its full potential. Andy and I eventually took a leap of faith to realize our dream and start an agency of our own with the principles and standards we believe are paramount for our profession.
What was the scariest part of starting Unit?
I tend to worry about all the “what-ifs” in any big decision and with Unit it was no different. “What if we can’t find clients to hire us? What if we don’t bring in enough money? What if I don’t know enough about running a business? What if there are expenses we aren’t considering?” Fortunately, Andy and I complement each other very well in our business partnership and we have always had the full support of our respective families. I think that made the decision to start Unit much less overwhelming.
You don’t work in the Texas office. How is that for everyone?
Working remotely does have its challenges, but communication is key. We all make an effort to keep in touch with each other in the office and with clients through phone calls, instant messages, email, and various apps we use, like Basecamp.
What’s great about your job?
Creating something that people can use that makes their lives better or simpler in some way. I enjoy both the creativity of designing and the logic behind coding. I also enjoy the variety of people and businesses we work for and learning about the work they do.
Of all the things you do at Unit, what’s your one
Wow, only one thing? I would have to say its spending time in-person with the Unitards, talking about design and where Unit is headed. Of course, that happens a lot less frequently now that I am in St. Louis, but I still get down to Dallas as often as I can.
So what are you doing when you’re not designing and running the business?
My husband and my daughter are my world, so naturally they get most of my attention away from work. We spend our time playing, laughing, eating and singing. I also enjoy being active in our church, cooking and watching my favorite TV shows.
I have been singing all my life and even met my husband, Ryan singing in a group in college that travelled, recruiting for the University. I do perform at our church and for the occasional wedding, but I find the majority of my songs these days are a) belted out in the car, b) random outpouring of a song stuck in my head, or c) my own made-up song sung while I’m doing stuff around the house (think cheesy jingle with rhyming verses).
Ha, awesome. So what are your favorite TV shows?
I admit it, I watch way too much TV. I’d say my favorite these days are Survivor, Community, Modern Family, 30 Rock, Amazing Race, Top Chef, and Project Runway. A few all-time favorites are Lost and Pushing Daisies.
Your top 3 fave blogs?
Any parting advice for young designers looking to get hired at a cool agency like Unit?
First of all, learn your craft well. Continue to hone your design and development skills on your own and read up on the latest techniques. Don’t assume you already know everything, but realize and be excited about the fact you have a lot to learn from those of us who’ve done this for a while. Even if you’ve mastered the technical aspects, being a good designer is also about professionalism, so apply at agencies that have high standards and practice them.