Andy - Co-Founder

Shape April 2022 HR 186

You’re Co-Founder of Shape, how did it all start?

I've been in the design industry for 18 years. I worked at some of the UK's top agencies but always had a passion to create my own studio. Long story short, myself and Jason created an agency that people want to work for, and clients want to work with. Our ethos is simple, do good work and enjoy what we do.

What's your favourite aspect about working at Shape?

This is two-fold. The people here at Shape. I absolutely love coming into work each day. We have worked very hard to create an atmosphere in the studio so that every team member feels comfortable. If we enjoy working together, the results will show in clients work.

The people I meet on a daily basis. I get to meet entrepreneurs every week, listen to their stories and help their ideas evolve into businesses online. This allows me to also see the world, and visit new places. So if you're reading this and not from Manchester, do not worry - we have clients from all over the world.

You mention that you meet clients all over, where's your favourite?

There is so many. Obviously we have clients close to home - lots in Manchester and Cheshire. But we also have several clients in London, and I'm regularly visiting London to meet existing clients and potential prospects. Further afield work has taken me to Dublin, Krakow, Prague, Zurich, Amsterdam, Paris and Barcelona. We also just won a contract with a client in Miami, Florida - so I've got my fingers crossed an opportunity will arise to go visit them and enjoy some sunshine.

Have you always wanted to be a web designer / developer?

I thought I was going to be a footballer like every other teenager, but that didn't work out. I knew from the age of 18 that I wanted to work in the design industry, and worked very hard to make that happen. I had around 200 freelance clients whilst at University and worked at 4 of the top agencies in the UK. I wouldn't change my path as I'm very proud of what we've created here at Shape.

You were also a University Lecturer for 7 years, tell us more…

At the age of 21 I got offered the opportunity to become a lecturer at Salford University within the Degree course. I loved teaching, but I also loved spotting the best talent in Manchester and helping them grow into very talented individuals - some of which came to work for me here at Shape.

I've heard you're a Manchester United fan?

Yes I've been a season ticket holder since the age of 5. I go with my dad and his friend, we sit in the K Stand at Old Trafford (any by coincidence our latest recruit Joe sits a few rows behind). I was used to watching fantastic football under the guidance of Sir Alex Ferguson, then we went through a rough patch with Moyes and Van Gaal. Then I thought Mourinho was the right choice and would bring us back to the top and sign some world class players. But I just don't think his style of management and tactical guidance was the way our fans want to play. Solskjaer understood the club but he didn't have enough experience to run such a huge club... or the tactical capabilities. Erik Ten Haag seems like the right choice, paired with Ralf upstairs, but the biggest task now is to completely rebuild the team and get rid of all the players who can't even be bothered running.

Fun Fact: I buy a pie every time I go to Old Trafford and just moan how bad they are. But I still have one every game.

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Favourite Artist: Eric Cantona Favourite Typeface: Playfair Display Favourite Shape: Circle Can't eat cheese Dislikes: Uneven Margins Favourite Colour: Black

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