WordJack is continuing to grow and expand, and we recently welcomed Michael L’Ecuyer as a new Web Quality Manager in our Collingwood, Ontario office. As a jack-of-all-trades in the website design and graphic design worlds, Michael is a great addition to our team, and he has already helped us improve the quality of the design work we present to our clients in several ways. Take a look at this interview to learn a little more about Michael!
How would you describe your role within WordJack?
My formal title is that of “Web Quality Manager”, but I tend to think of myself as more of a leader for design (and development) ideals and standards across WordJack. I “bookend” the many processes already at play across departments and offer analysis, feedback and overall advice in hopes that products and services will operate at a higher quality, both internally and for our clients, while doing my best to keep the process(es) fast and simultaneously offering value to the clients. Trying to introduce a higher degree of quality into a process that is fairly fast and value-based is challenging (and often frustrating), as you simply cannot have something of high-quality that is both done quickly and at a low cost. Changes are gradual and need time to be implemented. It’s a juggling act.
What’s your favourite part about your job?
The satisfaction that comes about when a change occurs is very high. I love seeing the quality of the websites we build slowly improve in quality of logo(s), image(s), colour(s), etc. I also enjoy working with multiple team members from around the world and seeing my direction carried across the products and services we offer. Being kind to people and generally remaining positive even if things feel daunting and difficult is also satisfying. I feel that is both the best way to “manage”/lead as well as enjoy the day-to-day operation(s) at a business where their are many moving parts like WordJack. Also, working with Marketing Managers, I still feel I’m at an arm’s length from our clients, making the work more satisfying when it’s done well and also feeling the “sting” more when a client is let down. This makes it very personal and overall more enjoyable and satisfying. It feels like a family of clients and a family of employees.
What led you to this point? (Tell us more about your professional background.)
I made my first “The X-Files” website when I was 13 years old on the GeoCities platform circa 1995. The internet was an exciting uncharted platform for creativity, experimentation, etc. Over the years, never being too jaded or complacent, I’ve always found myself returning to the online medium, taking small detours towards identity design, print design and application design and development in high school, post-secondary education (I received my Bachelor of Design from Ontario College of Art & Design) and into my career. I’ve worked at small agencies since graduation across Ontario and ran an art & design business with my partner and now wife Ruth Ann for the last decade or so from Creemore, ON.
Why did you decide to join the WordJack team?
After the birth of my first son, Kingsley, I quickly realized that living and working in obscurity neglected my social need(s) both personally and professionally. I worked for another small agency in Collingwood for a few years at that point. Then my second son, Sterling, was born, and again I felt a need to “get out of the house” as it were. I applied in and around the Collingwood area, and of all the jobs I applied for, the only one I really wanted was “Web Quality Manager” at WordJack Media on 78 Hume St, Collingwood. : )
What interests you most about web marketing/web design?
I think beyond the “web” aspect, there are deep and rich histories in marketing, design, art, etc. From identity design to print and now web/online/app(s)/etc., there are common standards, “best practices”, etc. that I love implementing across said mediums. I’ve had a life of influences, experiences, etc. also, which help to contextualize and craft a lot of the things I design (or help to design) at WordJack and beyond.
Outside of work, what are some of your interests and hobbies?
Cycling, running, gardening, eating, drinking, sleeping, playing, reading, talking, singing, dancing, modifying my facial hair, etc. etc. etc. I like everything and try to do it all in moderation. Get busy living or get busy dying (Yes, that’s a Shawshank Redemption reference). Married to Ruth Ann Adele Pearce in 2012 after dating for too many years to remember (she never took my last name as I refused to fill out the paperwork). Child ownership of Kingsley James L’Ecuyer (Gold, our ”King” and “heir” to our non-existent family fortune) and Sterling Charles L’Ecuyer (Silver, our “spare”; just kidding). We also have two cats, Rufus and Harold ”The Red” / Harry. When it comes to cats, one isn’t enough and three is too many.
Thanks, Michael! You’ve already made some great contributions to WordJack in your short time here, and we can’t wait to see what else you come up with!