Day 376

Much like my visit to St. Louis, I’ve come to find San Francisco is home to a very affable creative community. Part of this stems from the fact that many of the city’s shops reside in the neighborhoods of North Beach and Telegraph Hill. In these two adjoined northeast areas, you’ll find the likes of Razorfish, Heat SF, Publicis, Brave One, HUGE, FCB West, McCann and of course, Evolution Bureau. So, it’s not uncommon to see the various teams come together for a quick lunch or a few drinks after work. Personally, I’ve always been a fan of tight knit communities, so this discovery delights me to no end. Just because we’re all rivals, doesn’t mean we can’t become fast friends.

Another interesting tidbit I’ve noticed about San Francisco is the number of company campuses. Much like those I saw in Seattle from Amazon and Microsoft, several businesses here have purchased entire city blocks and transformed them into their own little branded worlds. I can’t help but feel this trend is mostly regulated to the west coast though. From what I’ve seen on my travels, most companies tend to expand up and not out. But, they don’t seem to follow that rule over here. Instead, they utilize their space to build parks, patios and accommodations for their employees. I only need look across the street to see a great example too, since the EVB office is adjacent to the Levi Jeans campus. 

All in all, it’s become rather apparent that San Francisco has a very unique ecosystem all its own. Things run a bit differently here and people are happy to go with the flow. That’s why I can’t help but wonder if EVB is nervous about their upcoming move to Oakland. With all the big players being housed here, EVB really is leading the way in many regards. They’re venturing out on their own and trying something new—a stance I fully commend them on.

I know they'll be fine though, because after two weeks of being here I can already tell it's the right thing for them to do. Not because they aren’t happy here, but because they truly enjoy being pioneers in the field. You can see it in their work, their philosophies, their overflowing ambition—and now—their commitment to change.

On a slightly different front, San Francisco is actually dealing with a rather annoying storm system at the moment (if you haven’t already heard). And it’s arrived just in time to postpone tonight’s EVB holiday party. I’m actually a bit relieved, because I don’t have any dress clothes with me. Ah, the joys of living out of a tiny suitcase. It's certainly something I won't miss come February. 

-Steve-

Day Six

Even better than the refrigerator. 

As my first week comes to a close, I know I’ve made the right decision on where to begin this journey. I mean, I’ve worked at places with more than their fair share of negativity and office drama. Yet, Recess is the exact opposite. It feels like one big family. Everyone here is genuine, fun and on the same page, day in and day out. Granted, these are all things I knew going in but this week completely solidified those characteristics.

On Tuesday, we had a big office lunch over a Bar Louie on West 6th Street. Although the team was not at all pleased with the restaurant’s lack of tater tots, I think everything turned out delicious. I had some salmon sliders and a salad, both of which were pretty darn good. I know, not the heartiest of lunches, but I’m trying to get myself back on a healthy diet. Ever since I moved back to Ohio, cravings for Taco Bell, Five Guys and Melt have got the better of me.

But I digress.

Wednesday, I went to AAF Cleveland’s Booze, Brews and Brands event with a few members of the team. It was held in Ohio City at the always-awesome Market Garden Brewery. We sampled some fine whiskey, vodka and beer, and listened to brand advice from Cleveland Whiskey, one of my project’s fine sponsors, Middle West Spirits and our host, Market Garden Brewery. After a Q&A, I even got to chat with Brady from Middle West and it turns out he used to work at Razorfish in Seattle. So, I told him about the project and he thought it was a really cool idea. All in all, it was a really insightful event. The panelists discussed how important it is to know your audience and meet them where they’re at, rather then always trying to bring them to you.

In the office, I’ve been working on a variety of things for the agency, including projects for the likes of Sony and Marigold Catering. Needless to say, I’m having a blast here. On the flip-side, however, my evenings have been filled with packing and planning. I know things are bound to get way more interesting when I land in Boston next month. But before any of that can happen, I still have plenty to take care of here at home. From the lease on my car to the need for a storage unit, I have a lot of ground to cover before I leave.

I may be busy with this, that and the other thing but I wouldn’t have it any other way. Things are off to a great start and I can’t help but feel envious of what the future will bring.

-Steve-