Q & A with Jarrett Beeler: One head, many hats and the path how he got here

We’re excited to introduce you to Jarrett Beeler. He will be presenting “Slashing Your Title” on November 16th at Hatch in Norfolk. Here is an insight on how Jarrett’s path to where he is now and where he is going both personally and in his work.

What: Slashing Your Title: How being T-shaped can reshape your creativity and career
Where: The Hatch, 111 Grandy St, Norfolk, VA, 23510
When: Wednesday, November 16, 2016, 6:00 – 8:00 pm

HR AIGA: What would you be doing if you didn’t have a career in design?
JB: I’d probably be teaching. I’ve had a couple amazing teachers and professors that have had a profound effect on my writing, my work, and my life. I just don’t think there’s a more honorable profession, and there’s something about helping someone realize their talent that’s really inspiring. If not teaching, I dunno — perhaps professional pinball circuit. If that’s a thing?

HR AIGA: Who was your mentor and what was the most important thing they taught you?
JB: I’ve got a few. Dave Iwans over at DIA gave me my first job in advertising and taught me so much about how to effectively engage people and audiences with concise cleverness. Drew Ungvarsky has been someone I’ve envied and respected for a long time too — doing amazing things for these massive brands and agencies in a relatively small market, and at a relatively young age. Though it wasn’t until I spent a few years working with him over at Grow that I learned just how hard that dude works to ensure that shop’s success and its people’s success. Finally, my dad. I’ve learned from him that garnering respect requires giving it, and that working hard is a virtue.

HR AIGA: How do you spend your time when not working?
JB: My two-year old keeps me pretty busy these days. 🙂 My wife and I are still “recovering teenagers”, so we spend the rare date night out going to shows and enjoying all Norfolk / VA Beach has to offer. I’m also a pretty big sports fan with a pretty nonsensical quiver of favorite teams — Washington Redskins, Pittsburgh Penguins and Chicago Cubs. There’s also always a civic project in the mix too. We’re working on a really ambitious one in the NEON District right now that if green lit will excite a lot of people, I think.

HR AIGA: What do you look for in new hires?
JB: Well, versatility as I’ll discuss in the presentation 🙂 But it’s also so dependent on the position as well. First thing is always, “how’s this person going to fit in the dynamic of the shop.” It’s great to see candidates who have done their research too; who know a bit about the shop. Obviously the work is paramount, but confidence in the presentation of it and the thought process behind the concept and approach are too. For junior designers, I love to see that they’ve courted actual clients in their books. So often we see portfolios that are beautiful, but they’re all so comprised of student projects with no client feedback, brief, or timeline. Even if it’s not the “sexiest” of clientele, the fact that you’ve been able to interface with a client from ideation to execution is impressive.

HR AIGA: What do you hope attendees will take away from your presentation?
JB: A few things. First, that being “T-Shaped” is advantageous to your creativity, career and employer, and if you are in fact “wired that way” you should find a gig that appreciates and encourages it. Secondly, how to sell and concentrate your versatility without sounding or performing like a Jack or Jane of all trades and a master of none. And finally, how learning other facets of the business that may not even be in your interest sphere can make you unbelievably valuable, relatable and a better creative.

HR AIGA: How can we follow your work and get in touch with you?
JB: You can find us on the web at Sway, on Facebook, on Twitter, and on Instagram.

There are still a few spots left — so register today!

By aigahamptonroads
Published November 10, 2016