Breaking out of one's comfort zone is one of those saccharine, cat-hanging-on-a-branch poster things that is actually good advice. For our team here at Edgar Allan, embracing this mindset led to the creation of our beloved huggable character-driven logo — Edgar — and sparked a journey of exploration and innovation that won us a technical achievement award from Webflow.
But even if your boundary-pushing breakout idea doesn’t win you awards, it’s worth doing. And because we love stories here, here’s our tale of getting uncomfortable.
Fostering connection as a fully-remote team.
At the start of the pandemic, we at Edgar Allan found ourselves searching for a way to connect after the loss of our physical clubhouse on the Westside of Atlanta. To us, brand is a club that people join based on an emotional connection, so it turns out we had the answer to this disconnected feeling within ourselves all along: start with brand. So, we developed a new brand identity, which resulted in the creation of our lovable logo, Edgar.
But we didn't stop there. Our team continued to push boundaries and challenge themselves through new technologies, design, and storytelling.
By playing to each team member's strengths, we were able to stretch our creative muscles and tackle new problems in unique ways. As a whole, we believe that innovation often occurs at the edges of tasks, and we wanted to bring back what we’d learned from this explorations to more traditional projects. So, all of this together birthed Letter Run: a digital club house where the whole Edgar Allan team could explore, hang out together, play a little via scavenger hunts, and then share our fun with the world.
“As a story-driven company,” said Mason Poe, Managing Partner at Edgar Allan, “we work from the idea that everyone has a superpower. And when everyone works from that superpower (their point of strength), as a group we make space for amazing things to happen. This is where innovation comes from; when people are really able to work from their strengths.”
Using Edgar Allan's “Everyone in the Pool” philosophy to break down silos.
Here at Edgar Allan, we operate under an "everyone in the pool" philosophy. This means that everyone on the team is encouraged to bring their perspectives to the work and collaborate freely. In the process of building the world of Letter Run, our multidisciplinary team found that together, working in Letter Run’s design system or UX, we could break things, cross the streams of our disciplines, succeed and fail… all with joy.
World building is a far cry from our typical scope of work, but this willingness to explore uncharted territory is what we feel sets the Edgar Allan team apart and fuels our growth as a brand to build Webflow agency. By pushing outside of our comfort zone, we were able to create a beloved logo, foster a culture of collaboration, and spark innovation, all in one fun internal project.
Bringing it all together in Webflow.
On every project, and in every client engagement, we continue to push the boundaries of emerging technologies as well as our own comfort zones. Here, we used a handful of different tech to create the full Letter Run experience, but stitched it all together in Webflow as the hub. And that’s for good reason: to allow everyone on our team to work from their strengths to benefit the whole — writing, design, and code.
“Webflow was key to not only how we built Letter Run but how we built a workflow,” notes Poe.
As it turned out, Webflow as a platform was ideal for bringing more people, with different strengths into the Letter Run project. This allowed everyone on the team to play to be the best superheroes they could be and push the boundaries of their super powers as far as they could go.
Check out the below video from 2022’s Webflow Conference where Mason and Kendra Rainey (Edgar Allan’s Director of Brand and Content) discuss in more details how the Edgar Allan team was able to push the boundaries of their skills as well as the boundaries of emerging technology (with the help of Webflow) to create our digital 3D club house: Letter Run.
Learn more about the other ways we are striving to push the boundaries of technology and our comfort zones by visiting our blog. You can also contact Edgar Allan or say hi to us on LinkedIn and Twitter.