Q&A With Michael Ortlieb – LiquidPlanner’s New Designer

Tatyana Sussex | February 21, 2014

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LiquidPlanner got a lively hit of style when Michael Ortlieb joined LiquidPlanner as our Marketing Designer. He keeps us on our toes with his dry sense of humor and encyclopedic film and TV trivia (thanks to his years at IMDb). Read on to learn more how Michael stays productive and happy at work.

Describe an average work day for you at LiquidPlanner:michael

It varies weekly, whether a project for print, to brand development, web design, infographics, illustration and advertising. It’s a multi-disciplinarian role and I enjoy the variety.

How did you know LiquidPlanner was the perfect fit for you?

I wanted to work at a company where I could utilize a broad range of talents to help move the brand to the next level. There’s also an incredibly talented set of people here and everyone believes in what they do.

How do you stay productive and focused during the day?

I’m asked to work on short-term and long-term projects on any given day. My short-burst projects get done in the morning while I’m still warming up to the day; and then I allocate the second half of my day to focusing on longer tasks. This schedule allows me to produce effectively while maintaining creative energy.

What do you appreciate the most in your co-workers?

Our collaborative process. I have the opportunity to bounce concepts around, avoid designing in a vacuum, and work with talented individuals that offer insightful feedback and commentary. That, plus we all seem to meld well as a group.

Do you have a ritual or routine to the start of your workday?
I rise around 7 a.m. and usually start off by making breakfast and then helping to get the kids ready. This is my hour or so of chill-out time with the family before I drop off the kids at school on the way to work. There’s also the occasional cardamom mocha latte to help out on colder mornings.  

Your idea of happiness at work is:

Being able to flex my creative muscles. I enjoy having a couple of projects under my belt that I feel great about while looking forward to work that’s coming up.

What book has most influenced your career?

All Politics Is Local, by Tip O’Neill. The main message is to make sure that you communicate with and serve the people that you can most affect. As a designer, it reminds me of the need to be in tune with our users and stakeholders and create a polished end-result that serves those groups.

Advice for anyone looking for a job right now—interview tips?

For designers: Design your portfolio for the job that you want. If there’s a company you’ve always wanted to work for, create work that aligns with that company and also solves a problem for their users.