Product Design extraordinaire, Oscar Morton, gives us a glimpse into his world in the latest edition of our interview series. Find out what he loves about the &us culture, how he started out in furniture design and what he’s looking forward to as the world continues to open up again.
What’s your work background?
So I graduated from university in 2019 after studying Furniture and Product Design at Nottingham Trent University. After graduating, I asked myself: What is it about the course/field of study that I really enjoyed? After some deliberation I came to the conclusion that it was the problem-solving aspect of the course, actually talking to and listening to people, not the medium of furniture and or product. From here, I started looking into what that would look like as a job, and User Experience Designer (UX) came up. I applied for an internship in UX/UI Designer and have never looked back.
Why did you choose to come and work at &us?
I was pointed towards &us in the midst of the pandemic. After a quick chat with Rob (Founder) and Susan (Alex S), I knew this was the place where I wanted to be. It has a very similar vibe and working culture to that of where I worked previously, but just on a smaller scale. The main reason I chose to work for &us was a combination of good people, loads of room for growth/development and a flexible way of working.
What does your morning routine look like?
My morning routine is pretty simple and straightforward. A bit of music to get me up and out, jump in the shower, dry off, make a creamy coffee, a couple of eggs on toast, then check my calendar/notebook and get to work.
What does an average working day have in store for you?
An average working day usually consists of a stand-up or catch up with colleagues, some design work, some refinement or testing, some focused making and finishes with presenting or showing work to the client or other colleagues.
What’s the best thing about your job?
The best thing about my job is that I am fully in control of what work I do, and how I go about doing it. (Within reason) Working at &us, there is a lot of responsibility given to each and every individual. You don’t have anyone looking over your shoulder saying how or when work needs to be done. You agree with your client and the team, then you crack on.
How has your workday changed in the last couple of years: What new things will you be keeping? And what can’t you wait to go back to?
My workday has completely changed over the last year. The once or twice every two weeks that I worked from home has now become full time. I love the flexibility and concentration I have when working from home. I have found myself getting less distracted. That being said, I am now really starting to miss human interactions. I can’t wait to go into work once or twice a week, to collaborate and connect again!
Predictions for the next year? What will clients want most of in the next 12-24 months?
How to adapt and deal with change. There are a lot of uncertainties that lie ahead. Companies and organizations have already had to flex and adapt like never before, and they will have to keep doing so over the coming months/years.
What is the most random thing on your desk?
Rubix cube. Just something to play with like a fidget spinner basically.
Who was your last email from?
My last email was from a client asking if I could make something look pretty!
What is the best piece of advice you have received?
Not a piece of advice but this quote helped to shift my paradigm and perspective: “The way we see the problem is the problem”
What did you want to be when you ‘grew up’?
An Olympic runner or a magician.
How do you relax outside of work?
I am currently into long woodland walks and delicious coffee.
What would be your superpower if you had one?
Empathy Man! (Hasn’t got that good a ring to it) Empathy Man can see the other side of every coin, taking the time to truly listen to others and understand them. (You’re welcome Marvel).
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