For everyone who does not know me, which will describe the majority of people, I would like to immediately confess that I thought a blog would be a horrible waste of time because, well, who reads it anyway? But then, people who do know me may recall that I was the IT-er who also saw no future in the internet in ’93 while I was forced to learn to design my pages for the Mosaic browser in college. But we are now already 16 years later, and with growing up came a lot of experience and now I am actually guiding companies, even those well established in the online/offline media world to explore new terratories. Karma’s a bitch sometimes I guess.
But here I am, typing my first blog, and my first posting on a Thursday night that announces the coming of winter within a certain period of time, and believe me, working from an attic that is still half-insulated because we are doing some major renovations at home, is not always completely comfortable. But anyway, here I am.
With this posting I would like to introduce what I will be planning to write about in the future and why the heck the title of my blog is what it is. But, ah, how could I forget, let me first introduce myself a little bit; I am Peter Zuidema, former Dutch citizen, migrated to the US in ’05 so with that I would already like to apologize for any typo’s my heritage might cause in these pieces of texts.
Anyway. My passions lie in the creative area and since I was a little kid I promised myself that I would become a movie director. When other kids in my class were still deciding if they wanted to become a Fireman or Han Solo, I was actually writing stories, including soundtrack, concepts for photography and complete casting laid out. But when, at 17, the Dutch Film Academy thought I was too commercial for their classes (which is anyone over there who doesn’t plan immediately to make a movie with a healthy 80%-running time of nudity in it) I tried to wait another year, and in the meantime go to another school, which would be following for four years the Interaction Design classes at the Utrecht School of the Arts. I loved computers, and they promised that we would be desiging games (this was in ’93) but we ended up mostly desiging behaviour paths for websites existing mostly out of text. But as the years progressed I forgot about the Film Academy, because with tools like Macromind Director 3.3 I could actually create complete movies and animations myself!
But, subconciously, I did learn something more over there at a school that could not even describe what it was doing, and that was to start questioning things. I sort of decided – stupidly – to quit school one week before the final exams because of the same conflict; I wanted to teach myself the psychology of the masses, while, as an art school, they thought that it was more in their line to think about individuals and art, then creating web sites that might actually be interesting for a large amount of people or companies.
But, a lot of years and a lot of luck and hard work later, it is sometimes nice to turn myself to the east, guessing where that school should be somewhere over the horizon, and just give them the finger accompanied with a big grin, while looking back to a history that has been rather succesful to me and my clients ever since that moment. And all these years inbetween, including the valuable lessons I have learned back then, will most certainly show up in later postings.
But, segwaying around so I can explain the title of this blog and my concept for it, one thing I have learned and still do is to question things and think logically about what is presented to me. At this moment I am the VP of a company that has tons of examples about things that do and don’t work, and I am succesfully a CEO at my own company trying to learn from the goods and the bads I have seen in my carreer before with my employers and with clients.
And that might sound completely boring, but actually, it is not. Because mistakes I see around me are usually of such an utterly stupid level, that defies gravity. And those mistakes are most often made by the people who make more than you and me, and are in the key positions in major companies. Believe me, there is tons of stories I can write here.
But for now I have been bothering you too much already. I hope you will enjoy the future postings that I might have and feel free to contact me about anything I write here.