Six to Start

Week 103: The Television Week

As ever, we're another week closer to the launch of Smokescreen this week. Adrian and his team (which, if you're just counting people in the office, includes Andrew, Claire, Kass, Paul, Marc, Meg, Dom and Lisa) are cracking on; this Tuesday was another regular milestone, with a sprint demo to Alice and the Education team at Channel 4. Oh, and when she's not busy working on Smokescreen, one of our writers moonlights under the name Tricity Vogue, and some of us are off to see her in Vauxhall this week.

Alongside me and Adrian, Lisa rounds out our management team - she's head of projects and operations, and mainly working on making sure that Smokescreen is delivered as smoothly as possible to Channel 4. This week, we've had another one of our planning meetings with Paul Sturrock. Some of the best advice that we've had from our non-exec board members was that between the three of us, we need to make sure that we set aside (and use) time both for the more "boring" management tasks of keeping the company running smoothly, but also that we spend time regularly talking about where we're heading, and if that's the right direction or not.

As ever, I have a couple of business development meetings this week, but they're gradually being pushed aside due to the E4 project I'm working on - of which more news later, hopefully next week. While I'm not throwing creative direction at the E4 project, it's being wonderfully managed by Kim, assisted by Robin and Roopali, while Phil beavers away on the engineering side, Dean makes headway on our user experience and Jo pops in now and then to drop a creative hand grenade.

The big news this week is the announcement that Adrian and I have made it into 2009's Broadcast Hot Shots listing, and we're in some fantastic company. It's also again brought something we've been discussing in strategy meetings into focus for us: for all that Adrian and I are recognised, what can sometimes be forgotten by the outside world is that it's for work that Six to Start as a company has accomplished, and Six to Start is far more than just me and Adrian. It's also not scaleable, either, not when all of our clients or partners wants either Adrian or me working on a project, so it's being looked at carefully when we plan the kinds of hires we want to make, and how we want to grow the company.

At the same time, it's great exposure: I'm up in Edinburgh for MGEITF - the Media Guardian Edinburgh TV Festival - this week and am speaking on a panel on Friday afternoon, How to Make Money Online. It's the first time we've gone to such a big TV industry event; most of the other conferences we've been to so far have been more cross-media focussed, like b.tween or Picnic, or primarily web-focussed, like SXSW Interactive.