Office tale of Jennifer Van De Vooren, creative director and principal consultant at Van De Vooren Group.

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Who are you :
Jennifer Van De Vooren, Creative Director and Principal Consultant at Van De Vooren Group.

In which city are you located?
Ottawa

A word to define what kind of worker you are :
Thorough.

What tools are essential to your life (app, software, etc..)
Two monitors, Adobe Creative Suite, Skype, my Microsoft Surface, and a blank sketchbook with a Bic pencil.

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What does your office space look like?
My office has one side that’s clean and white, like a blank canvas. Then there’s the other side that’s filled to the brim with inspiring books, files, half a dozen printers and scanners, and all of that other creative jazz.

What kind of music do you listen when you are working ?
I’ve been really in to the Hang drum lately (to listen, not to play). I discovered it off a main street in Paris when this Rastafari was mesmerizing a crowd with tunes from this weird UFO-looking thing. The sound is like an anodyne for creative block.

Do you have a way to organize your day to maximize your work ?
Just a good, ol’ fashion, analog to-do list.

What tips would you give to improve productivity?
Don’t take things too seriously. Take it responsibly, but if you and your team are laughing and enjoying the challenge, then a challenge doesn’t often mutate into a problem.

You're better than your colleagues to :
Find a way to realize a creative goal within a client’s budget.

What is the best advice anyone has given you ?
When I was eight years old, my dad and I drove by a billboard. I turned to him and said, “That only has one sentence on it. How much would that cost someone to write?” "It probably cost five thousand dollars to write and design that ad," he replied. Perplexed, I glanced at him sideways and exclaimed, "That’s about a thousand dollars a word!” What he said next has had a profound affect on me. With surety, he continued, "The right combination of words is like music. Like the chorus of a simple jingle on a TV commercial, you can give people a full experience by weaving together just a couple of letters. Simplicity is key.”

What is your best tip for saving time ?
Don’t commute too far to your office. It can save hours a day to work nearby.
Learn to start using bullet pointed lists for anything that’s more than one thought.

Aside from your computer and your phone, what gadget can you not you go without?
My oven. Nothing cuts down on stress like a nice glass of wine while cooking up a feast.

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