Learn How Adam is Making a Difference

Our Customers / October 3, 2014 / Kristie

LR_Signature4Making a difference in people’s lives can be done many different ways. Sometimes it’s a simple act of being there for emotional support when someone is going through a rough patch. Sometimes it’s going out of your way to make an experience really great for someone else. For Adam R.T. Smith, founder of Liquid Reality, making a positive difference in people’s lives is just one of the perks of the job. Adam is an award-winning graphic designer, user experience designer, and developer with over 18 years experience in the web, mobile, interactive, and software industries. He’s worked with hospitals to help patients hear, and kids with diabetes be able to manage their day-to-day lives. You may not think at first that developing software can change a child’s life, but from Adam’s experience, he can assure you that it can and does. We interviewed Adam to find out more about how he helps people, and how Daylite helps him. 

adamMost Enjoyable Part of the Job
Problem solving. I think the most enjoyable part for me is the beginning of the project when a client has a problem that seems large and amorphous and I’m able to condense that down into a solution. When it makes sense for both the end user and the business side of it, that’s definitely the highlight of my day.

My Favourite Projects to Work On
There’s a number of projects I’ve really enjoyed working on. I would have to say that the most satisfying ones are two solutions we’ve created for hospitals. The first one was a project called Music Ear. It’s a piece of software that helps patients who have had cochlear implants surgically installed to learn how to hear music through repetitive training and ongoing tasks at home. Patients using Music Ear have shown a significant improvement in their hearing both with music and the ability to discern speech.

The other project was one we did for Sick Kid’s Hospital about ten years ago. We created a diabetes tracking tool for children so they could manage their own day to day lives with diabetes. It’s helped them to be more comfortable with the concept of insulin, activity levels, and food intake as well as be able to make sense of it for themselves.  Both these projects are favourites of mine because they provide a benefit not just in enjoyment, entertainment, or financial, but actual health benefits that really change and help the lives of the end user.

Estimating Time for Projects
The time for each project varies. Generally a project like the one for Sick Kid’s takes about three to four months. Fortunately enough, now I use Billings Pro time-tracking history to estimate the time of a project. Previously it was just guestimates. Before I started using Billings Pro to track my actual time, I would generally add a third of the time I thought it would take and it was usually around that time.

Key to Good Brand Development
For each client, one thing you can see consistently across the board is that the brand has a personality. The brand is a human being. That’s when you know you’ve created something that truly communicates and resonates with the target audience. You have to think about the human qualities when you start thinking about a brand as an entity. Some clients I work with have a good understanding of where they want the brand to go. Sometimes they’re right and sometimes their idea is slightly askew. More often than not, the branding starts at such an early stage that the personality of the company is not fully developed. It’s really important then to work closely with the leaders of the company to formulate the direction for the company. Once they know what type of customer they want to interact with, you can find the right middle ground where you can speak in the language, tone, and style that resonates with their intended audience. It’s also important to realize that sometimes the target audience isn’t going to be the right audience. It’s safe to say every person in a company has a different understanding of what the company represents to them and how they want to be seen by the public. If everyone is on board with the intension of creating the best possible solution for the company, the number of individuals you work with doesn’t really matter. As long as you get the team members on the same page and working towards the same goal, things move pretty smoothly.

LiquidReality_RadioRuntApp2When I Realized I Needed Daylite
I needed a way to keep everything in a centralized repository and to track all elements of communication with my customers. Things would sometimes unintentionally slip, but now with Daylite, that doesn’t happen. The email logging functionality (Daylite Mail Assistant) is one of the most convenient ways for me to keep track of projects and communication. I use the Phone Amego plug-in to track phone calls with clients as well. The ability to access this from my iPhone and iPad is tremendous. The ability to see what’s going on with a client right before I meet them is really valuable. Another reason I needed Daylite was to be able to take customers from prospect, to lead, to opportunity, and through the project. This was a pivoting point for my company. I cannot stress enough how much Daylite has changed the way I work.  It took me from a reactive stance to a proactive stance for the first time in 18 years.  It put the framework in place for me to excel within.

My Workflow with Daylite
I use a mix of forms to keep track of prospects. I use pipelines and activity sets to move those prospects into leads and then gather the research I need through forms. I generally use pipelines more once we get to the project or opportunity stage.  Daylite has allowed me to see my new business pipeline in a very logical and progressive frame of mind. Daylite has allowed me to be proactive in growing my company for the first time. I’ve been very fortunate with my business to rely solely on word of mouth and referral business in 18 years. Growing the business has been something that has been more and more important to me over the last couple of years, which is the main reason I invested in Daylite. I’ve looked at and evaluated many apps in this space and Daylite is the best app for me to manage my business as I grow.


Why I Upgraded to Daylite 5
The user interface was probably the most significant motivator for me to upgrade, being a user interface designer myself. It’s much cleaner and neater, which makes it less jarring to switch to from core OS apps than some of the other apps I use. I love the new Insight view. For me, it’s still early for the value of Insight to kick in, but over the next six months I think it’s going to be able to show me where I’m spending my time, where my effort is going, and where my revenue is actually coming from. It’s important for me for my sales pipelines to see what type of projects I’m working on more. With the Insight view, I’ve noticed that I’m doing a lot more mobile web and responsive projects than I thought. I could see that just by quickly reviewing my active projects in the Insight view. Sometimes you think you are working on more of one type of project than another, but when you can clearly see that 60% of your projects are mobile web, it’s eye opening.  The more I use the Insight view, the more I realize that I’m not fully exploring Daylite and I love that. As I’m working it into my workflow sometimes I think to myself, “wouldn’t it be nice if Daylite did this…” and then I see that it DOES. Daylite is constantly giving me new opportunities to be more efficient and aware of what’s going on in my business.

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