LAUNCHING: SAMANTHA NOYES
Time at the company:
THE BIG QUESTIONS
WHAT IS YOUR PROFESSIONAL TITLE?
Founder / Designer.
WHAT DO YOU DO ON A DAY-TO-DAY BASIS?
We are a footwear design studio, so I am always in a different part of the design process - brainstorming, sketching, designing, researching, conceptualising, revising, etc. Since we're a small company, I also manage the team, take care of invoicing and accounting, communicate with clients, and make new connections.
WHAT DID YOU WANT TO DO WHEN YOU WERE A CHILD?
I switched between wanting to be an architect and a professional viola player. I didn't know designing shoes or products was someone's job until I was in late high school. It's funny the jobs we don't find out are jobs until it comes time to pick one.
WHAT ACADEMIC QUALIFICATIONS DO YOU HAVE?
I studied Industrial Design at the University of Cincinnati DAAP school. The program required six internships to graduate, so I was able to learn the specifics of footwear design through those opportunities.
WHAT’S THE BEST CAREER ADVICE YOU’VE EVER BEEN GIVEN?
I'm a super competitive person in life and in business, for better or for worse. I always go back to this quote from Shoe Dog by Phil Knight:
“People reflexively assume that competition is always a good thing, that it always brings out the best in people, but that’s only true of people who can forget the competition. The art of competing, I’d learned from track, was the art of forgetting, and I now reminded myself of that fact. You must forget your limits. You must forget your doubts, your pain, your past. You must forget that internal voice screaming, begging, “Not one more step!” And when it’s not possible to forget it, you must negotiate with it”
WHO IS YOUR ROLE MODEL AND WHY?
I find inspiration in so many people - picking one person is too limiting! I like to focus on the most inspiring things from each person, whether it's over coffee, on a podcast or in a book. Everyone has something to teach you.
WHAT IS THE BEST THING ABOUT YOUR CURRENT WORKING ENVIRONMENT?
The best part is that we're all just a group of friends with overlapping creative goals and motivations, and we're pretty good at making each other laugh.
WHAT WOULD YOU CHANGE ABOUT YOUR DAILY WORK ROUTINE IF YOU COULD?
I would magically make myself able to wake up super early for a bit of quiet time before the day starts.
WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF PROFESSIONALLY IN FIVE YEARS’ TIME?
If I asked myself this five years ago and then stuck to it, there definitely wouldn't be a Studio Noyes. The only thing I can hope for is that I'll still be working alongside great friends who constantly motivate me. And maybe a second office dog.
DO YOU FEEL YOU CAN BE THE SAME PERSON AT WORK AND IN PRIVATE?
For the first time, I can finally answer yes to this.
WHERE AND IN WHAT ROLES ARE WOMEN IN THE LEADERSHIP STRUCTURE AT YOUR COMPANY?
There are only four of us and while I'm the only woman, I feel completely respected by all employees. That is all I can ask for.
DOES DIVERSITY MATTER TO YOU?
More than anything else.
HOW GOOD IS YOUR WORK LIFE BALANCE?
This will forever be a work in progress and that's okay -there seems to be a lot of overlap between work and life.
WHAT QUALITIES DOES BEING IN YOUR ROLE NECESSITATE?
My role has evolved to mean being creative, curious and motivated.