Typical 24: Simon Douglass, Curated Digital

IDG Connect is looking to speak to IT, business and marketing professionals across the spectrum to discover more about their very different, typical working days…

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Simon Douglass

Job title: Owner and Founder

Company: Curated Digital

Location: London, UK

Years’ experience: 14


  1. What time do you reach the office each day?
    It depends on what I have on that morning. I usually get to the office at around 10am unless I am meeting a client at their offices, in which case I could be in at any time.
  2. Is your job varied?
    Yes, I like to be involved with as much of my company as is possible which means that I am never constantly stuck doing the same thing day after day. As the owner of a business, you tend to find yourself doing lots of different things - it comes as part of the package.
  3. Is your job creative?
    As a digital marketing agency who employ a somewhat different approach, we have to be creative. We champion an integrated approach across all channels and look at a client's overall goals then adopt creative campaigns in order to achieve them.
  4. What do you spend the majority of your time doing?
    It’s hard to define - there’s a bit of everything from day to day work on campaigns & invoicing clients to acting as Head of IT and fixing laptops - every day brings a new challenge!
  5. Do you personalise your desk?
    Yes, of course. Actually at the beginning of the year I allocated budget for each of my employees to personalise their desks. I think it’s important to ensure that people feel comfortable and at home when working. It also gives a bit of character to office, and people have brought some interesting things which add a little extra zest.  
  6. Would you describe yourself as creative?
    Yes I would, but I wouldn’t put down Curated’s creativity solely to myself. We have a very diverse office with people from all over the world and each one has a different outlook on life. This adds hugely to the creative campaigns we come up with.
  7. Do you have any quirky daily rituals?
    Crank up Spotify, find new music, go through all of my clients Google Analytics accounts to see how the previous day worked out, all whilst sipping on strong coffee.
  8. Do you tend to work on your own or with colleagues?
    We have an open plan office, so while we will all be working on our own projects, we are all around and available to each other. I encourage people to to talk to each other about their ideas and to always ask for help or advice when they need it. It’s also quite nice to be able to share a joke now and then with the team.  
  9. How many hours on average do you work a day?
    Probably around 12-15. I’m often checking or replying to emails from 7 in the morning all the way until the small hours.
  10. Roughly how much time do you spend each day on email? Taking calls? In meetings?
    I live in my inbox which probably isn’t the most efficient way of working. It’s either email or face to face meetings rather than phone for me. I’d say about 5-6 hours a day on email, and 2-3 in meetings
  11. Do you use social media much for work?
    All the time. As a digital marketing agency, we are constantly on top of social media and keep up with all the trends. We currently run several initiatives across social media which do really well as they give people a bit of a flavour for our company culture. For example we run our Tuesday Tips across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and we have a Curated Book Club which features every Friday.
  12. What do you enjoy most about your work?
    The randomness, the people, working on new projects
  13. What type of music (if any) do you listen to at work?
    Anything and everything, preferably something with guitars
  14. What do you do for lunch?
    Our offices are in Old Street and we are really lucky to have a market just around the corner which sells pretty much any type of hot food you want. I usually pop down there at lunch and grab a curry!
  15. Do you socialise with work colleagues?
    Yes, all the time. I think it’s really important to ensure that you get on with everyone both at work and outside work. Because of this, I have organised lots of different things we can all do together, from going to pub quizzes, to pedal boating to go karting.
  16. Are there any tasks (through your career) you’ve been especially glad to get rid of?
    Reporting. Bain of my life and still spend too much time on it, but have managed to pass a lot of it on to the team
  17. What is your last task of your day?
    A quick check of all my clients Google Analytics accounts to see how the day has performed, before heading home and hopefully to bed
  18. How do you like to relax after work?
    Lots of sleep.
  19. Do you keep checking email through the evening?
    I tend to keep an eye on emails, but I wouldn’t say that I continue working to the same extent once I get home.
  20. Do you take work projects home with you?
    Sometimes you have to work beyond your normal hours in order to get something done for a client. This is the nature of the job and is something which is synonymous with owning and running your own business.
  21. What would you say to your 20-year old self?
    “Don’t worry about wasting time and messing about, you’ll grow up and find out what you’re good at later on in life. For now, enjoy the freedom of not knowing where you’ll be in 20 years’ time, it’s going to be good”
  22. If you could try out any job for a day, what would you choose?
    I’d run a bookshop.
  23. What device did you use to answer these questions?
    My work laptop.
  24. Do you use your own personal device for work?
    I have a work laptop, but I also do give my personal phone number out to some of my clients.