Happy Birthday, Matt!
by Melanie, on 22 Jun 2020
Today is Strategic Piece co-founder, Matt's, birthday! So, we've taken this opportunity to put him into the spotlight and ask him 10 random questions.
When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
I’ve always enjoyed building things, so I wanted to be an architect or engineer, but also writing, so I wanted to be a famous author. My first career was clearly focused on the engineering dream. Nowadays, I’m finding ways to stretch my creative side (although I’m not so sure it’ll make me famous!)
What’s the best book you’ve read so far this year?
“Best” is so subjective! I really enjoyed Scott Galloway’s “The Four”, which offers a candid appraisal of big tech, and I’m currently wrapping my head around “Arguing with Zombies” by the Nobel prize-winning economist, Paul Krugman. On the social side, “The Nordic Theory of Everything” (Anu Partanen) and “Manifesto for a Moral Revolution” (Jacqueline Novogratz) are both brilliant reads, especially at a time when we should be thinking deeply about what’s working in society and what’s not. Along similar lines – and with important ties to police behavior – Malcolm Gladwell’s latest book, “Talking to Strangers”, really made me think.
What’s your best idea for an invention?
Well, I’m a named inventor on 11 U.S. patents but I’m not sure any of the ideas are all that great! I’m still waiting for the a-ha moment that causes me to leap out of the shower to start scribbling sketches while shouting Eureka!
What’s the best birthday present you remember getting when you were a kid?
It was probably the year my kiddie bicycle got replaced by a shiny blue racer. Growing up in a small English village and still a few years before encountering my first computer, having a cool bike to ride while playing with the neighborhood kids was huge.
Who was one of your childhood role models?
I was very fortunate to have great teachers, especially science and maths, at almost every level of school. One encouraged me to send my project drawings to Black and Decker with a suggestion for how to make a new drill. Image how 7 year-old me felt when they sent me a nice letter and suggested I contact them again once I finished school! Each of those teachers pushed me to explore, ask questions, investigate, analyze, and synthesize – attitudes and skills that have served me well, long into adulthood.
What is your favorite local restaurant?
At the moment... Nobie's.
What is one non-work-related goal that you would like to achieve in the next five years?
I would like to set foot in Antarctica to be able to say I’ve visited every continent on Earth.
What is part of your daily routine that you look forward to every day?
Making my first Espresso Lungo of the morning. The smell and the first sip of creamy foam is a mental trigger to get into work mode!
What is the best piece of advice someone has given you?
Ask “why?” six times before deciding that you understand something.