Saturday, February 20, 2010

DesignMyWork: My Stunt with the Graphics Design Industry in Pakistan

There have been speculations about it since I joined Aeon Technologies. But till now, I have been maintaining balance between both things. However now its time to officially announce that I would be leaving the active management of DesignMyWork and 13th March 2010 would be my last day as the CEO of this company. PrintMyWork affairs were already transferred to Salman and Shigrif back in October 2009. The reason of leaving DesignMyWork is somewhat the same as of PrintMyWork. Though being a techie, I am an admirer of design and beauty, yet admiration of great designs and art work doesn’t add any value to the company. I want to enjoy whatever I want to do professionally and somebody who dreams about innovative products was finding it really difficult to adjust in services of low cost projects. Yet the experience of jumping into an industry of which I had no idea was truly marvelous and I thank all my employees, partners, friends and mentors for being there when I needed them. The tenure taught me the designing issues, HR and Financial issues, problems in the BFA/MFA curriculum here in Pakistan as well as managing the Design HR. You surely cannot treat a designer as a software developer and apart from that awesome designers are really scarce these days. This venture would certainly help me in future with my professional life.

The problem with design business in Pakistan is that a design which might be awesome for one would be pathetic for the other and as Steve Jobs says that “You can’t just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new”. Also that “Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works”.

Most of the time people called us and said “2 Din Mein Website Banna Dein” without even realizing what pain one has to go through while making an original design. Even if you see our website, we did a wild experiment with it. Everything was developed from scratch. Even the music was specially produced for the website. But most of the clients don’t understand and perhaps the post on OatMeal explains it beautifully.  Also we were being tagged as a web design firm and that’s why we have been very selective in taking projects. We tried to maintain our focus on original graphics designs. Our initial idea was even to provide the IPhone Developers & Application Builders with original designs and music as most of them are currently using the ones copied from web.

Now that I am becoming busy day by day, its becoming increasingly difficult for me to manage things. I am shedding off most of the extra affairs, volunteer activities as Saad Bhai, Khurram Bhai, Adil Bhai and Irfan Bhai advised me to concentrate on one thing instead of putting my legs in multiple boats. This also means that I would also be reducing my frequency of guest lectures in universities. I have one plan on mind at the moment and I want to concentrate all energies on that and Aeon Technologies.

DesignMyWork is however still the brand of ROOFExpress. I have not yet finalized to sell it off or to keep it with ourselves as a freelancing/full time firm but all I know is that I am done with it. 
Thursday, February 18, 2010

Rowgs of Employees

When i did my first venture, one of my mentors and friends Adil Saleem told me that 99% of the employees are not happy with their work environment. Knowing that i always kept my attitude at home whenever i came to office. I open/close doors for them myself, make tea for them and throw frequent office parties to make sure they are comfortable. Even though i don't smoke, i stand with them at the "Soota Gate" and discuss affairs other than the office work. Games, Social Networking sites are not banned on network. You can do whatever you want to do provided you are giving the input required from you. Even when i hired at DesignMyWork, i hired everyone on their "Expected Salaries" without a bit of negotiation.

Being a music fanatic myself, i have been generous in providing my office colleagues with headphones or small dual speakers so that they can enjoy music to keep themselves up. Recently i walked into my office in the morning after a quick nap and i was like :S and :/ to see the following song being played on 2 office systems. Still trying to figure out what "Sitams" i have done.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

How was the Valentine's Day?

Many of my friends messaged or called and asked how did my Valentine's day go. Though i normally tell them that i spent the day with my family or in some social work initiative. But since i was so pissed off at how the media campaigns were run this year and wrong messages were sent to the youth of our nation most of the time, this year the reply was a bit different and loserish. 

"Mera Din Aisa He Guzra Jaisa Aik Shareef Single Shakhs Ka Guzar Sakta Hai."

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

GunKali - A Fresh Breath for Pakistan Music Industry

If there was one album that I was waiting for since long apart from The Rising’s, it would definitely be “GunKali” by Kaavish. I have been following this band from the day it released its single “Bachpan” on some Pakistani music websites. Moreover, I have listened to all their songs done for different plays as well the jingles for various advertisement campaigns.

The album, GunKali was released on 15th January 2010. Thus I recently got hold of a copy and frankly it doesn’t disappoint you. Jaffer’s mature vocals complimented by Maaz’s music have truly created wonders in this album and it is extremely difficult to figure out the best song. All the songs are fantastic, up to the mark and not ones done by learners and amateurs. That is why the album is selling like hot cakes. Hats Off to Jaffer and Maaz for producing such awesomeness in the tough times as well as Fire Records for believing in them. I can surely rate “GunKali” amongst the best albums of this year.