Paul Travers has joined CAP.Co to strengthen the design and project management team.
He’s someone many of us have worked with for quite a few years, being part of the awesomely talented Treehouse Company team, based in Kilmarnock back in 2005. They were the company that designed and built BeWILDerwood as well as many other amazing treehouse structures across the world. He’s joining Stephen Vass, Jim Wales and Johnny Lyle who also all worked at Treehouse Company and Bothy Lodge Company way back in their distant dusty pasts. More than that, it was our own Simon Egan, who was the client that commissioned them to build BeWILDerwood!
He’s already got his official company name, which is McManage! So you can get to know him better, we asked him some questions about joining back up with the team.
1. Where did the name McManage come from?
It’s a long story, but given that I’m the third Scot to join the team following McJum (Jim Wales) and McSketch (Stephen Vass) respectively it was felt fitting that I also take on the honour of prefixing my job title with the traditional Scottish ‘Mc’. The Manage part is, well, self-explanatory as my title is Design & Project Manager so we needed something that was descriptive but also did the proverbial Ronseal (exactly what it says on the tin).
2. I believe you may have known some of the team before you joined the team. How did you all first meet?
Ha! It feels like a lifetime! I’ve had a working relationship with everyone on the team – in some capacity – from circa 2005 right through until I stopped freelancing around 2013 after swapping haggis for kangaroo to fly halfway around the world in search of the mysterious flaming galah! On my arrival down under, I took a slight sidestep from my predicted professional path (property claims, would you believe it!) and spent some time in the Sydney sun before boarding a plane back to Blighty late in 2015.
3. What took you abroad in the first place
There were three things I wanted to do. I can’t really explain why, but they were to visit the Great Wall of China, experience the Shinkansen in Japan and float past the Sydney Opera House and Harbour Bridge on a boat so I set off on my journey to do all three en-route to settling in Australia for 12 months. I stayed for 2 and a half years after meeting my fiancée Cat and we decided to come back to make our future here.
4. Did you believe back then in Treehouse/Bothy days that it would influence the rest of your life?
Never. I was riding the wave and loved every minute of it … I always thought I’d have to get a proper job someday (and I’ve had my fair share of those between then and now!). At least now I get a third bite at living the dream!
5. How did you get into Treehouse Company in the first place?
I was a founding member of Projektur Design Collective in Glasgow and we had recently decided to disband the company after exhibiting at the Salone Del Mobile in Milan as part of Designers Block. With pending unemployment looming, I picked up a newspaper (as you did when searching for work pre-interweb) and saw an advert for a Treehouse Designer; I thought to myself, I could do that – so applied and here we are nearly 15 years later.
6. What will your role be?
While my role will be a fluid one, it will take in some design work, but will predominantly be project management and supporting some of the bigger projects – my introduction to the team will help streamline and improve the design and production process, from initial enquiry through to completed build.
7. What are you looking forward to?
Honestly? I have to say the people. It’s like working with your mates; your hard-grafting, focussed, imaginative, inspirational, dedicated and driven mates. Also, the open forum nature of how the business is run, where everyone’s voice is heard and holds value is extremely empowering as an employee and drives you forward to deliver a better outcome for all.
Knowing – and feeling – that you are a part of something special, different and unique isn’t something that is achievable in most daily grinds and should be held on to, for dear life, when found.
8. Is there anything about working in a normal 9-5 office that you’re not looking forward to leaving and conversely anything you can’t wait to leave?
The daily, monotonous train travel, office politics and communal playlists will not be missed in the slightest. With that said, I’ve made some good friends where I am so will miss the camaraderie and the ability to duck out for a cheeky Burrito at lunch!
9. Age, marital status kids etc
I’m 37 years old, engaged to my beautiful Australian partner-in-crime Catherine and we have an 18-month old son, Tate (meaning ‘cheerful’), who keeps us busy at all hours of the day and night.