The Talent Economy Podcast


Cultivating a Career of Creativity

Season 1, Ep. 31

If you could design your best life, what would it entail? Are there aspects of your personal life that you feel, if addressed professionally, would create greater harmony in your life? For example, how many of you have creative outlets that are completely removed from your professional lives? What would it mean to have an organization consider the totality of your talents and not just those that pertain to a particular role?

This week’s guest is David Nuff, Principal at Nuff, a design agency that works with brands to translate their values into tangible, visual assets. David is also part of the Toptal network, where he serves as a freelance design consultant and a contributor to Toptal’s Speakers Academy. David and Paul speak candidly about the many missed talent opportunities that organizations face when, despite their communicated support, they refuse to take a chance and consider candidates with diverse experiences moving away from traditional role requirements.

David goes on and speaks to how being raised with an appreciation for both the arts and sciences influenced his career, and offers key advice to both organizational leaders and freelancers on how to navigate remote team dynamics. A key takeaway that David offers is that to the degree people can build their best lives, they will do their best work. For him, it’s location independence, and having that opportunity has cultivated a sense of personal happiness and a diverse set of experiences that inspires his work.

Questions I ask:

  • How is David feeling, both as a freelancer and personally, during this unprecedented time?
  • As a junior engineer, one of the products that David worked on was recognized in TIME Magazine. What was it like getting such a high validation so early in his career?
  • How is David seeing clients embrace the idea of working with someone remotely?
  • How does David build trust when working with a team virtually?

In this episode, you will:

  • Learn about David’s journey from planning to be a computer scientist to becoming a designer.
  • Understand how, despite their support of candidates with a diverse experience, big organizations are unwilling to “take that bet.”
  • Learn David’s valuable advice for executive and HR leadership.
  • Learn how to move away from the need to appear busy and shift the focus to quality work.

Connect with David:

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