Guy Andefors of Wildheart Media has been a web designer, a freelancer, an agency boss and now he heads up a content marketing agency. Listen to his experiences that span multiple locations (South Africa, England, India and Sweden) and a variety of working models.
As well as discussing this epic career journey, we focus on the experience of finding, hiring and managing freelancers – and some of the challenges this can bring.
Some of the things we discuss in this interview…
How did you get started? Guy talks about starting his career at Young and Rubicam in Cape Town at an interesting time – the birth of desktop publishing and the start of the shift to digital media.
Guy talks about building his first website, and gravitating towards the internet during its infancy.
12:00 Moving to Brighton – and taking a break from freelancing to work for a company. And struggling with the confines of regular employment. Guy found it difficult to have his creative impulses tempered, so went back to freelancing.
16:00 Leaping back into freelancing – though not everything went to plan. Guy tested the notion ‘leap and the net will appear’ – only to find that the net was not forthcoming.
20:00 Guy talks about his most difficult time as a freelancer, when the work dried up. Guy had been too busy working to network, and then found his own small network ran out of leads.
23:00 The turning point. Guy wins a big gig that included engaging freelancers – and begins to see his future as an agency.
26:00 Guy’s agency blossoms. He begins hiring and transitions from a web designer into a marketer.
29:00 Guy talks about recruiting people (“a total pain in the arse”).
34:00 “I don’t think you’re really a boss until you’ve fired someone.” Guy talks about some of the difficult moments during his tenure as head of an agency.
37:00 Pulled in two directions – Guy explains how his business life began to feel incompatible with the rest of his life.
42:00 Running a business gave him less freedom rather than more.
44:00 Guy quits the agency.
49:00 “We always have choices. It’s just the consequences we have to pay for.”
51:00 Guy gets married, goes to India and creates a new business identity (“I knew what I didn’t want.”).
52:00 Guy and Leia create Wildheart Media
54:00 Starting a family and moving to Sweden.
57:00 What’s it like hiring freelancers?
59:00 How do you find freelancers? Guy uses his own network first, then asks for recommendations. He also uses Twitter and LinkedIn to seek freelance partners.
1:04:00 Guy talks about difficult experiences working with freelancers.
1:13:00 If a freelancer wants to do more work with agencies like yours, what advice would you give them?