Glean Acquires Nomad Projects

May 25, 2017 in Announcements

Nomad Projects joins the Glean family!

We like good work that’s done well. One of the challenges of running an agency is finding the right people to work with; clients and contractors who share our desire to get stuff done. Like all companies, we know the pain of seeing our emails go unanswered and great projects left to meander.

But from our base in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, we’ve also worked with some absolute diamonds. Digital nomads – people who work wherever they are in the world, and who don’t see a need to choose between doing great professional work and seeing the world – have been a vital part of some of our biggest projects.

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Understanding Your Ecosystem

March 22, 2017 in Technology

Let’s start with a story. Once, a developer, let’s call her Jenny, had been tasked with rolling out a software update to a group of users. Jenny did all the hard work that developers do for these types of projects. She sure that the update would work with the old system, that the update matched the features from the users, and that the program was rolled out without any downtime. Following up a few months later, Jenny found out that many of the users were no longer using the program. She verified that she had given the users what they wanted in a program, but found that they could not use it because they did not have the latest version of the operating system that was needed to support her program. She had failed to understand the ecosystem in which she was developing the program.

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Designing Better Projects

March 15, 2016 in Design, Human Centered Design

Project design is a process that takes years of work to master. From project scoping, planning, design, and implementation there are a lot of areas to master. If you’re interested in creating better projects, that engage more people, increase impact, and are more fundable check out these tips on how to optimize your project.

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How to Build Trust on Your Nonprofit Website

March 10, 2016 in Strategy, Technology

Trust is a big deal.

No matter where we go or what we do, we are being marketed to. The websites we visit, the television shows we watch, the freeways we drive down, and the podcasts we listen to, are all trying to market to us. We see ads everywhere at every turn.

And because of this, we’ve become desensitized to marketing messages. In fact, as an audience, we are super skeptical of anything that feels even a little bit like marketing. We don’t trust the people talking to us to tell us something useful, or helpful, or engaging. We just expect them to yell at us about their product or cause. We’ve stopped trusting, and so we’ve stopped listening.

As marketers, what can we do about this?

We have work to do. We need a new way to connect to people, a new way to gain their trust. It’s our job to build trust with people again – to connect with them with honesty, transparency, and focus.

I’ve become a huge proponent of blogging as way for organizations – commercial and non-commercial – to build trust, genuinely connect to their users, and create advocates for their cause. There are three principles I think are really important, and really powerful, when blogging this way.

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Why should I care?

March 10, 2016 in Design, Human Centered Design

Imagine you’re searching the internet for a solution to a problem you have. You hit Google and start typing keywords to search, or you might even type in your entire question. Google throws thousands of possible matches at you. As you browse the links, you find a few that look relevant. Clicking through, you land on a blog post, various articles, and websites.

Now think about this: how much time do you give to each of those websites? How long will you allow yourself to look at a website before you move on?

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3 Common Mistakes New Developers Make with Users

February 16, 2016 in Technology

Did you ever have a project not go as expected? Or just outright fail? I have. More than an few times. And while everyone of those failures hurt, being able to learn and grow from the experience has still been helpful in my journey as a developer. “How did we get this wrong?” That is the question programmers often ask after they get feedback on a development project that didn’t meet expectations. And usually the most common answer is they didn’t meet the needs of all of the users. I find that what a lot of young developers miss is that they spent too much time focusing on the needs of the stakeholders involved in development project. The job isn’t to just satisfy those who are the project stakeholders.

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