Creative Corner: Wethos Contributor Jake Kahana

Welcome to Creative Corner, a series by Wethos kickstarted to introduce the many wonderful experts who make up our community. This week, we’re excited to share stories and inspiration from Wethos Contributor Jake Kahana.

1. Tell us a bit about your founder story!
Summer 2016, I got fired from my job as creative director of a small agency. I’ll spare you that story. But from there, I was looking for work and wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. The first opportunity that came (4 excruciating months later) was a freelance UI gig. I’ve been freelancing ever since doing a mix of digital product design, brand strategy, and art direction. My side company, Caveday, runs virtual co-working sessions to help people learn how to focus.

2. How do you identify yourself professionally? Tell us a bit about what you do today.
I typically say that I’m a designer and facilitator. My work tends to fall in one of three lanes: 1. freelance design, 2. teaching workshops, and 3. facilitating company offsites.

3. What types of opportunities make your heart flutter?
I love working with clients that are able to trust the creative process and tell powerful stories around impact. 

4. How would you describe really good teamwork?
Overcommunication, transparency, and +1s. Our ideas and work get better when we team up to execute more smoothly than any of us could do individually.

5. What’s a collaboration you recently wrapped up that you’re proud of?
I’m finishing up the development of an iPhone app I designed with a team of people called Embarc. It’s a virtual coaching app for people in the middle of career transition.

6. What music (or sounds) do you jam to when you’re working through a project?
Love Noisli.com—nature sounds that loop. Gets me in flow mode really quickly.

7. What do you wish you had known when you were starting out?
Ask for more money than you think you’re worth. Never do anything for cheap. Have a range of what you typically charge and stick to it. Don’t forget to invoice the pro bono clients too so they know how much you charge and what kind of discounts you’re giving so they’ll know when recommending you.

8. What discipline outside of your own do you want to connect with most in the Wethos community and why?
Creative technologists. Developers and coders and digital artists that love experimenting and exploring using tech in new ways to tell stories, entertain, and serve people.

Jake Kahana is a designer and entrepreneur who teaches creative leaders the tools and skills to build thriving creative teams.

He is a cofounder of Caveday, a company founded to maximize productivity for individuals and corporations through facilitated deep focus sessions and deep work training. Their global community has participated in over 10,000 hours of deep work “in The Cave.” As a founding US faculty member with The School of Life, Jake teaches workshops in emotional intelligence for corporate teams. He speaks at conferences and companies around the world. He’s proud to have his work as part of the permanent collection at MoMA and his parents’ fridge since 1989.

Currently, Jake is working on The Creative Department, a management training curriculum for creative leaders.