Work inspiration with
Head of Innovation at PHD UK in London
My name is Anjali Ramachandran. I’m the Head of Innovation at PHD UK in London, a media and communications agency that is part of Omnicom Media Group. I am also the co-founder of Ada’s List, an online forum for connecting women working in technology and digital across the UK and Europe, and community advisor to Angel Academe, a network of professionals interested in supporting female-founded startups. I blog at One Size Fits One about a range of things related to what I do and observe.
A Macbook Air 11’’ – I like the lightness of it. And because I don’t want to depend too much on any one company, my phone is a Google Nexus 4 – I particularly like Google Now cards. I’m a bit disappointed with the camera quality though. I use Bose Noise-Cancelling Headphones to listen to podcasts on the go. I like using my Sony NEX 5 camera, especially when I travel – it’s really compact. John Willshire’s Artefact Cards are useful to jot down ideas when I work on presentations away from the computer.
I store most of my work in the cloud on Box.com, and use Google Drive a lot to work on collaborative projects with friends and colleagues. Feedly does the job for the time-being as my feed reader, and Delicious houses my bookmarks.
Ideal work environment
My ideal work environment would have lots of light, a standing desk, lots of colour, a bean bag, a dashboard like the Panic Status Board, a big screen Twitter companion app like Dextr, streamed music, and a projector to screen interesting videos and documentaries regularly to which I could invite friends (I love the idea of Documentary Club). I cannot wait for the time when wireless electricity is finally accessible to all of us – I think the physical mess created by wires is very counter-productive to creativity.
I am very inspired by reading about the work of social entrepreneurs and technology entrepreneurs. Mattermark, Hacker News and AngelList are a great source of these. Demo days organised by incubators like Wayra and TechHub are a useful way to be introduced to new ideas in person, by their founders. I am also a firm believer in drawing parallels between very dissimilar fields of work, so I get lots of inspiration from going to museum and gallery exhibitions. Nature is the best inspiration of all: going out into the countryside for long walks really refreshes my mind.
I admire good teachers. Anyone who can communicate an idea in a clear, insightful and inspiring way. They are rarer than you think – I have a lot to learn in this department myself. Kevin Kelly, for sharing so much of his knowledge about technology with the world through his writing. Sugata Mitra, for forging ahead with his dream to make education accessible to children across the world through the School in the Cloud, especially in areas where the quality of traditional education is poor. My fellow Ada’s List co-founders Merici, Nicki and Rosa. Sarah Turner who created Angel Academe. Ada Lovelace. Bill & Melinda Gates.