Amid the turmoil of EOFY, June marked the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. A moment to reflect on the Queen’s 70 years of service. It was also a time to look ahead and ask what might be the next step for the monarchy?
As we reflect, we begin to wonder what the monarchy will look like when the baton is passed to Charles. Will it be more or less the same? Or could this be a turning point? A chance for the Royal Family to do something different… and “level up” so to speak?
This brings us – somewhat tenuously – to this month’s Super8 theme: leveling up and becoming better versions of ourselves. We’ve curated eight insightful pieces of content to spark thoughts and ambition to keep growing, both personally and professionally. From thought-provoking stop motion animation about perspective and boundaries, to exploring the surprising benefits of quiet time, there’s something for everyone.
So grab yourself some cucumber sandwiches and a cup of the best Earl Gray – or if that’s not your street, a coffee and a cruffin – and settle into our June edition of Super8. Let’s go!
1. Whiteland stop motion: a short film.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. If that’s true, then this stop motion animation by Ira Elshansky says it all. Six and a half minutes of brilliance, this animation will make you think differently.
Leveling up sometimes requires a change of perspective. A recognition that the things you thought were dreadful are actually quite wonderful. Or a realization that the limits you thought were in place are actually not limits at all.
2. Design your service offerings.
If you’ve been a subscriber for a long time, you probably know 2Bobs. In their usual half-comical, half-illuminating style, David C. Baker and Blair Enns discuss how to improve your service offerings.
Aimed at digital and creative agencies, but equally relevant for anyone working in the service industry, this team favorite podcast is packed with great tips to improve your service offerings, to benefit you and your clients.
3. Forget personalization, it’s impossible and it doesn’t work.
Upgrading is not always about acquiring new knowledge and skills. Sometimes it’s about letting go of bad habits and beliefs. If you share Peter Weinberg and Jon Lombardo’s view, one belief to let go might be the idea of one-to-one marketing.
In this article, Weinberg and Lombardo propose the idea that personalization is, in fact, impossible. And they also deliver a pretty compelling argument. We’ll let you make up your own mind, but the main takeaway for us is to ask the question: what widely held belief in your industry could be absurd? To take it to the next level, it may be time to challenge this belief.
4. 10 ways to check if your website is accessible.
At August, we strongly believe in accessible design. You’d be surprised at how many websites we come across that were built without accessibility in mind. One of the easiest places to start on your accessibility journey is to check how your current website is performing from an accessibility perspective.
In this article, Nick Babich shares some easy ways to check your website’s accessibility, as well as ten tips to make your website more accessible. If you’re looking for a way to upgrade your website – it may have a bigger impact than you think – dive headfirst into this article.
5. Why we need to spend time alone every day.
Have you ever found yourself mindlessly browsing social media, then suddenly snapping out of your trance to ask yourself, “What am I doing?” “. You’re not alone. This mindless, reflexive, almost automated behavior is incredibly common. This is one of the reasons people often complain about not having the time. And that’s holding us back.
This TED article shares a range of practices we can implement to cultivate a more contemplative habit of mind. To slow down, reflect and let our minds wander. Because without quiet time, we just rush from idea to idea.
6. How to learn things quickly.
One of the essential elements of upgrading is skill development – learning new skills and improving existing ones. But did you know that learning itself is a skill that can be developed? That we can “learn to learn”?
Although this article is aimed at developers, these helpful tips can be applied to almost any skill. If you want to grab new ideas quickly and retain more of what you learn, we suggest reading the full article.
7. Code Review: how to make enemies.
Speaking of code, let’s talk about code reviews. In this tongue-in-cheek article, Iain Cambridge explains how to annoy your colleagues during a code review. Ultimately, this satirical piece illustrates that upgrading involves improving communications within a team, code review being just one example.
An entertaining read, especially for developers. Though our extended team also found the humor in this one.
8. How to grow your mailing list with social media.
One of the hardest parts of newsletters is growing your audience. As a content producer, you can be sure people are connecting to your content, but you may still struggle to get signups. Social media is the perfect place to do that.
In this article, Pam Neely shares ten mini case studies of how ten different content producers used social media to grow their email subscribers exponentially. If you’re looking to grow your following, this one is worth reading.