Digital Specialist Andrew Armitage is the founder of A Digital Agency for Digital Transformation in Kendall.
The award-winning agency works with B2B clients in professional services, tourism, hospitality, manufacturing, and food and beverage, as well as a range of e-commerce businesses, providing services via consulting, advanced websites and digital marketing.
Armitage himself has over 20 years creating digital platforms for market leaders—working on projects of all sizes—and is a podcast host, keynote speaker, and author.
We found out what the last week of his life looked like.
As an early riser, I often sneak downstairs before the rest of the house gets to work by going through any pending emails from the previous week and making a list of what’s to come—it’s my favorite Monday morning ritual. I like lists and Evernote has become my go-to app for organizing personal tasks and ideas!
Once I get to the office at 9 a.m., we have a full team meeting to catch up after the weekend, review current projects, and make sure everyone is happy with the week’s schedule.
We’ve started the “boxing of time” process, which we’ve found maintains productivity and boosts creativity. As a result, our meeting on Monday is crucial to discuss ongoing projects and identify any barriers that may be disrupting or putting team members at risk of increased commitment. To add to the motivation, we’ll set ourselves personal goals for the week – it’s a very important start to preparing us for a great week.
Every two days, we launch an episode of our digital podcast, “The Clientside.” To date, we have over 30 episodes, recorded with guests from all over the world on a variety of digital related topics. The episode to be released this week is all about audio access, which was recorded using instant chat and later voiced by a professional audio artist. It’s one of my favorite episodes so far, so the team and I were excited to post it.
The beginning of the week is an excellent time to catch up on some notable suggestions and quotes, taking up most of the afternoon every Monday. I tend to finish around 6pm, using the last hour after everyone else has left to give myself space to respond to any final emails and set priorities for the next day.
Tuesday morning, I drive my kids to school. It’s on my way to work, so I’m usually in the office by 9:30 in the morning.
We have a daily situation that I always try to join in to hear all about the progress of the day before and what’s coming up and work together to help report and overcome the team’s barriers. The meetings are short but very useful for keeping the communication flowing between us and making sure everyone is aware of the team scene and progress.
Today, I’m a guest on someone else’s podcast talking about my book, Holistic Website Planning: Putting Your Website at the Center of Your Digital Transformation.
The book was released in June 2021, so being able to host on other podcasts is like a launch tour! It’s also very comforting to discuss the ‘why’ and ‘how’ of writing a book, because it was a huge project for me.
I spent the afternoon planning and writing a presentation for a talk I will give on “The Importance of Creating a Human Experience on Your Website” as part of a Cumbrian Business Development Program.
I have been a consultant with the Digital Tech Cumbria Program since last year, helping a variety of local businesses get the most out of digital technology. Not all of these companies were among our usual target audience, so it was interesting to hear different perspectives on the difficulties they encounter with their websites or digital marketing.
Specifically, it highlighted the much-discussed skill gap, as well as the challenges people face with typical WordPress sites or how they have been abandoned by other agencies that have moved on to the next project.
It was also interesting to see how traditional entry level tools like Wix are gaining momentum and targeting larger clients through the simplicity of their platforms. These may not be within my usual territory, but it pays to know that my advice can lead to small changes that have a big impact on startups.
Not only are established companies affected by the skills gap, but it is also young people who will have the most difficulty finding work when they begin their careers in the post-COVID world.
This morning, I’m heading to Barrow-in-Furness to share my professional experiences with a group of 11th graders. I am passionate about providing advice to young people and the skills they need to get their career off to a great start. Reassuringly, they don’t all hang around the free breakfast, although it’s a bit like entering Dragons’ Den after asking a few honest questions.
To save time and reduce driving, I spend the rest of the day working from home since the office is another 15 miles from where I live. It’s a quiet afternoon to think twice about planning ahead for 2022.
Working from home has been very successful during the pandemic, but we’re still a studio-based team. Realistically, as we go on, we will likely have more people working remotely, and while I enjoy the peace and quiet of working at home, I find working together as a team more effective face-to-face.
Before closing play, I take a quick look at our project management platform to see how it goes and update some slides with some new ideas that came to me in my next talk. Ideas don’t come all at once, so I like to give myself time with these to make sure all bases are covered.
Thursday is a good day to catch up with our project manager. We’re fine during the week now, so we should have a good understanding of the tasks that will be completed and the impact that will have on the next week’s schedule.
We’re approaching the end of the year, so next year’s budgets are high on my list. After I got started and did most of the development myself in the early days, spreadsheets are pretty much the closest to writing code these days. That’s a good thing, because things are less likely to break, and my team are the experts in this department now.
Later, I have a quick check-in with our PR agency LarkHill PR. Currently, we are working on some exposure to promote and support the launch of my book. It’s great to hear about the advancement of opportunities and to keep track of the elements of the work.
A little early end today, and there’s a chance to enjoy a quick evening bike ride. Centered on the edge of the Lake District, we’re blessed with a variety of off-road trails, so we’re spoiled for choice with some great trails just a short drive from both home and studio.
Every Friday morning, I have a Zoom call with my Accountability Group, which I met at the Acceleration Program in 2019. We’ve met weekly since the start of the pandemic and it’s a call I’m looking forward to because it’s a great opportunity to hear about the challenges others face in their work and get feedback or new ideas on my own.
We’re all in different stages with our work, and we’ve had different experiences, so these are relationships and consulting that I really appreciate.
Later this morning, we had a progress review with one of our clients. Structured reviews are something we do regularly in addition to any ongoing feedback to get comprehensive feedback if our activities meet the needs of our customers.
We usually cover our current progress to date, identify areas of success, and identify and plan opportunities for improvement, which helps us set our sights on the future focus that will get our clients to where they need to be. It can also be very exciting for the client and us to see how our work has helped performance!
At this point, some team members begin to liquidate and go home. Depending on how much progress they have made during the week against their goals on Monday, people can finish anytime from lunchtime on Friday to get some more relaxation after a busy and productive week.
Before I know it, it’s the end of the day and another week for me too. I come home to spend some quality time with my family and put the batteries back in before everything starts again.