The People Behind The Cogworks: Will Parker
Role: Head of Project Delivery
Clients: All clients including Reckitt Benckiser and its brands.
So Will, what brought you here?
Before I first started working at The Cogworks, I was working at another agency in Lincoln Inn Fields, but looking for something more permanent. There was a job advert on LinkedIn and I heard back from Adam where I was asked to come in for a meeting. I met him and Dan at a coffee shop around the corner from our old office. It was a really nice chat and it was one of the first times where I felt an interview was not an interview, but an actual chat. I thought ‘this company suits me and we fit nicely.’ The final interview was at a pub around the corner with everyone from The Cogworks and they were firing questions at me over a pint of beer. It wasn’t the usual standard recruitment procedure, but it felt right. It’s this kind of approach that makes me like working here.
When did you start with The Cogworks?
Three years ago. One of the things I said at the beginning was that I was hoping to set up an operation in Poland. I said this during the interview and I think this got Dan and Adam’s interest because they were thinking about expanding abroad.
What has made you fist pump at work?
I really enjoy working with lots of different types of people. I enjoy making things happen and work well. I am all about accessibility and usability, so when I see that we have built stuff that works well for the user, that makes me happy.
The thing that I’m most proud of is when I first started, I took over the RB account and thought, this could go somewhere, especially since we had already built great relationships with them . It’s now gone from being one project, into half of the Project Management Team that pretty much solely work on RB projects. We now also have a Content Team that supports RB brands and offer a variety of content services to a range of clients. I’m most proud of The Cogworks growing something that gives people jobs and experiences.
What makes your cogs work?
I am a problem solver and a creative thinker. When I get a real challenge and something that requires analytical and creative brains and getting various people together to solve a problem, that’s the bit that gets my cogs working and brain ticking.
What is on your office playlist?
I do like to sometimes sing to myself, which is something that anyone who sits within a mile radius of me can attest to. It can be anything from what’s currently playing to something I heard half an hour ago which will be on the tip of my tongue and I will invariably hum or sing. I probably have a radio DJ somewhere in the back of my head who’s riffing and mixing tunes in my stream of consciousness.
How do you get your tech fix outside of work?
I am definitely addicted to the internet. It might be more important than water or air. I’ve been involved in IT and computers since I was a little kid. Technology has always been a part of my existence. I’m interested in randomly surfing the web. When I’m on new sites, I will, as a matter of course, see where their breakpoints are or what their menus are like. I play when I’m surfing the internet.
There are also some interesting Facebook groups of which I’m a part. Living in Kraków, there are some interesting Polish tech groups that are active.
Who’s on your client bucketlist?
I am keen on finding something that we can do ourselves at the Cogworks. We have a lot of creative ideas here and a lot of skills to do some interesting internal projects.
What is your office vice?
I’m quite loud and I think the earlier point of me singing probably annoys a lot of people. These are my vices!
What is your tipple of choice?
A thing that surprised me when I moved to Poland was...hot beer. Hot beer is beer...served warm. It sounds weird and when I first heard about it, I thought it was ridiculous, especially since you think you want a nice refreshing beer served cold. But try it, especially with some kind of raspberry juice or ginger just to spice it up a bit. It tastes a bit like Gluhwein, but it’s with beer. You may be able to find it in Germany, but I’ve only ever had it in Poland. It’s called Piwo Grzaniec.
How do you unwind?
Hot beer! No, but you know, I have two little ones. Whether it’s reading, doing some art with them, or taking them out to play football in the park and spending time with my family. That’s unwind time. The other day, I was at the lakes away from the internet and work; it was just my family and my sister-in-law’s family. That was really nice.
What is your secret talent?
I can juggle for a lot longer than four seconds, so that’s a challenge out there [watch out for future Coglympics challenges]! I absolutely love cooking. Not sure if that’s a secret talent. I’m quite forthcoming about my talents and lack of talents. My bosses tell me that if they are ever wondering what I’m thinking in a meeting, they just need to look at my face. I don’t really need to hide any of my talents or otherwise.
Lastly, sum up The Cogworks in one word?
Friendly. This place is really is different. People are really nice and really care about you.
Oh but wait there’s more… Let's turn to The Mystery Jar question…