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‘Civil-Servants-Got-Talent’ – We find out about a public sector project that got the ‘creative’ creating

Tim, can you start by telling us a little bit about yourself, and how you got to career point you are at now?

Well I am originally from Aldershot but moved to Devon four years ago to live with my partner. I didn’t know what I wanted to do when I left school and ended up bouncing around different jobs including training as a chef and doing low-level management roles, but it wasn’t until I sunk to my lowest point – picking up dog litter off the beach that I finally picked myself up and with a little encouragement from my partner I took hold of my career.

I joined the civil service and quickly got involved with innovation projects within the department and became the DWP Idea Street top user. During my career with them I worked on some of the countries biggest innovation projects, and even job-shadowed the DWP Permanent Secretary, and all because I had a little faith put into me.

It was during this time I first thought about Amaze Magazine, at that point it was an internal civil service project aimed at helping civil servants showcase their alternative skills, but it quickly changed to helping students/creative types break into the creative media industry because we felt it was the route we could help people most.
I really got here because I was determined to make a difference not only to my career, but to as many other people’s as I could, and I have to say now that I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for people like Alan Preece (co-founder of Amaze Magazine/5ways), James Gardner, David Cotterill and Russell Payne amongst others who helped me to showcase what I could do, never underestimate the power of working together.

The strange thing is that I have no experience in creative media, no qualifications, nothing, but look at the things I have achieved already, it goes to show how far social media has come, and what opportunities are out there if you try.

We know enough about Amaze, but our readers may not, tell me about it, is it online or offline, or both, & what is it about?

I actually run a non-profit organisation called 5ways which helps students/creative types break into the creative media industry through a range of fun projects and activities. Every year we host a couple of different projects that we feel can offer great opportunities for people, in the past we have won the NHS Institute for Innovation Healthcare Challenge, been featured in the Guardian Professional (also mentioned in the Society Editors Daily Email), shortlisted TWICE by the Computer Weekly Social Media Awards, released our first book worldwide, launched an online music collaboration website and so much more…

Our big project for 2012 is Amaze Magazine which is a brand new digital download magazine designed to showcase the talents of students/creative types from around the world. It features interviews from industry professionals, peers, news on projects/competitions from around the world, tips & tricks and so much more…

For the first time everyday people will get a chance to get their voices heard and be able to actively contribute to the creation of the magazine which is released monthly on the ISSUU website and released across our network of websites…

The idea is that this will become a flagship project for us, and we want it to become a worldwide hit, we already have interest from America, and media buyers are showing positive signs of coming on board with us, within 24 hours of launching we had over 400 unique hits on the magazine and we are expecting it to get at least 2000 hits within the next 30 days which will see us competing with mainstream brands.

How should anyone get in contact with you, if they feel they have a story worth telling?

If your creative then we would love to hear from you and you can send us your story via the contact us section of the 5ways website – www.fivewaysjunction.co.uk

How enthused are you about the entrepreneurial and self-starter scene at the moment, both in the UK and further afield?

I believe that the country is struggling at the moment, the recession has had a big impact on business both in the UK and the rest of the world and it is down to us to pull ourselves out of this mess. The self-starter scene is something I am very passionate about, and something I will always champion.

I think it gives people a wonderful opportunity to showcase what they can do and would welcome hearing people’s story via the 5ways website as we plan to launch Inside Innovation Magazine later this year which will have a strong focus on highlighting innovative projects like self-starter platforms, so who knows you could be in our first edition!

And what are the plans for Amaze and yourself personally over the rest of 2012?

We are going to be releasing the magazine every month on the 30th, and for now my attention is on making sure the content is of good quality, but we are also launching a brand new innovation magazine titled Inside Innovation Magazine later this year, and we are looking to host live events across the country, so my plates pretty full at the moment, but that’s just the way I like it…

I also have a few innovation projects in mind of my own, including a brand new way to find advertisers for self-starter communities, and a pitching website for the public sector… But its early days on these ideas at the moment….Lastly, probably the most important thing is to find new advertisers for the magazine brands.

So to help 5 Ways – please do get in touch with Tim to discuss advertising opportunities and ways to support the project. TheEmployable give 5 Ways a big high-five and hope to hear more about the Amaze Magazine over the coming months…

Also, if you are looking to freelance, start your own business, think you have a creative idea or you are a self starting business champion then find out more about Startacus the online community celebrating the self starter – launching soon…

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Discussion

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