Starting as a university project, It’s Nice That now has over half a million readers a month. Will hasn’t stopped there. Since founding It’s Nice That in 2007, he has been at the helm of its expansion, overseeing the creative output across all sides of the business, building creative agency Int Works, and constantly developing new opportunities.
We had a chat with Will about what we can expect from him at Dots – as well as the past, present and future of It’s Nice That.
What behind the scenes details will you be sharing with us at Dots?
I’m hoping to share some insights into the things that we don’t usually get to talk about externally – how we do what we do.
When you started It’s Nice That did you imagine it becoming the media company it is today?
When I first started It’s Nice That there was no chance of me thinking it would become what it is today. It was a university project that then became an evening and weekend hobby. It was only after the audience had grown that there was a glimmer of hope that this could become a business and the day-to-day focus.
What is your career highlight so far?
It doesn’t come naturally to look back and we are always excited about what’s next. Over the last 8 years we’ve tried to build an environment that provides the structure and support for creative companies to thrive – currently that’s It’s Nice That and INT Works, but we are developing a third business at the moment. We currently employ 30 people, we’re profitable, we’ve won some awards, we’ve met some amazing people, but I’m reminded on a weekly basis that someone’s work we’ve featured has led to them being commissioned, and that is always a highlight!
When you imagine the future of creative culture, what do you see?
I think the breadth of opportunity is huge. What I do imagine is an increasingly collaborative environment, with people plugging in skill sets and experience into relevant projects. The power of one person’s idea realised through a number of hugely talented individuals working as a team is what excites me. I also hope we’ll see continued opportunities and exciting things happening from outside of London.
What is the biggest challenge you predict you’ll face over the next 5 years?
Where to start! At least if you can recognise the challenges, you stand some chance of overcoming them. The most terrifying challenges are those you don’t see coming! There are a number of things we know we need to keep on top of, from staying relevant, to proving the value of our work. We need to continue identifying, developing and supporting the great people we work with and building a team that feels empowered and aware that the work they are doing means something.
Are there any other Dots speakers you’re particularly looking forward to?
All of them. If there’s one thing I’ve learnt from events, it’s the experience of being there to hear what everyone else has to say – both speakers and delegates. It’s always the person you’ve never heard of that you enjoy the most!