episode 12

Why Being a Web Designer is AWESOME

Running a web design business isn’t always fun or entertaining, but if you hold gratitude for the reason you do what you do, it is going to carry you through those harder days.

Today we discuss the importance of finding gratitude in your web design business and why being a web designer is awesome.

Show Notes:

Celebrating the flexibility around time, location, and projects that running a web design can offer.

Letting go of the traditions we hold onto from our past corporate jobs in order to appreciate the web designer role even more.

Web design sits at an intersection of form and function and a beautiful blend of left and right brain work.

How web design relates to fashion, legos, and gaming while providing the ultimate reward the more knowledge you unlock throughout your career.

Episode Transcript:

Karyn Paige, Sam Munoz

Sam Munoz 00:00
If you want to be super productive, and you are a person that can sit down and like bust out a bunch of work in 20 hours, and you want to charge this much money for a project, like you just increase your hourly rate, right, I love to think about it like that. And that’s another level of flexibility that we don’t have outside of the confines of owning your own business or working in a business with this entrepreneurial mindset, where you really are not just being paid to sit there, you’re being paid for the work that you’re doing and the value that you’re providing. And that feels good that feels so good to get paid for the value you provide. Welcome to making website magic where we empower women to step boldly into their web design businesses follow their intuition and claim the success they’re worthy of. I’m Sam Munoz.

Karyn Paige 00:49
And I’m Karyn page, where the tech wizards behind Sam Munoz consulting on the making website Magic School of Business. were two women here to talk about what it actually takes to run a web design business that’s aligned with

your vision.

Sam Munoz 01:02
Spoiler alert, it probably isn’t what you think it is ready to hear about everything from refining your business vision, networking with intention and creating a magical client experience. Let’s do it. Hey, Karyn, this is super fun, right? Because to our listeners, they’ve just been listening to the podcast every week. But you and I kind of pre recorded some episodes. So it’s fun to sitting down to record the podcast for the first time in weeks. I think it’s been a month, right?

Karyn Paige 01:34
Yeah, it has. So I’m glad we’re back back in action. Very excited to dive into this topic this week. Because it’s just like all things goodness and celebration.

Sam Munoz 01:44
Yes, exactly. Because today, we’re gonna be talking about why being a web designer or developer is awesome. However, before we jump into that, we wanted to do some housekeeping slash just filling you guys in on some goodness related to the podcast. The first thing is that I guess there was some weird slash fun update with Apple podcasts. So if you’re a listener over there, and you’d like to click on the links that we share, Apple no longer supports hyperlinks. And yes, we can talk as techie as we want to, because we know you ladies understand all the lingo and the jargon. So if you are wanting to click on links, definitely go to our website, making website magic.com. We put all of the show notes that we put all the links, and you can click on all of the stuff that we referenced over there. So go to the website for the full links on that if you are an apple podcast listener. The other thing is that Spotify has this cool thing called intuitive listening. And so if you start on an episode of our podcast through Spotify, and wants to continue listening, it will recommend the next best podcast of ours to you. So that’s a pretty cool feature. So if you are a Spotify listener, definitely check that out. And then the last thing, and I’m hoping mine doesn’t go off when I say this, but the last thing is that you can actually ask your Alexa smart speaker to play making website magic podcast. So if you say that it’ll play the podcast, I do have an Alexa here. I bet she’s listening. But hopefully she won’t go off. But try that out if you have an Alexa. And if I just made yours go off three times. I am so sorry. But those are the fun podcast II things that we wanted to share.

Karyn Paige 03:16
Yes, awesome. Okay, so we got our general housekeeping and updates out of the way. Can we dive in to the topic at hand? Yes. Okay. So this episode was all about why we love being web designers. Right, like, let the gush fest begin,

Sam Munoz 03:34
because tell them why we are motivated to record this particular episode right now.

Karyn Paige 03:39
Yeah, really back in really bad. I told you I was excited. Yeah. Why did we decide to talk about this particular topic? I think, you know, honestly, we’ve had some really deep discussions on the podcasts. lately. We’re talking about vulnerability, we are talking about unlearning and unpacking a lot of like, really deep seated deep rooted advice, right. So we like to think of this as kind of like a palate cleanser, if you will, you know, like a little champagne toast at the end of the multicourse meal

Sam Munoz 04:13
or something. are in those baking competitions, right? You know, they have to cleanse their palate in between. I’ve always been curious. I will go on a rant just for one second. I’ve always been curious. Like, they must cleanse their palate for a while and then they go to the next one otherwise, but what if you’re tasting the previous person’s and it’s impacting your feelings on the next dish? Anyway, so we don’t want the podcast to do that. scene in by itself and have it like a nice palate cleanser, a nice light hearted episode, just helping us recenter on our dreaming, why this kind of business, right? We could have gone into business for all sorts of things. But why did we decide to start web design and or development companies, so to re motivate you and to really center and route us back in gratitude for the businesses that we have So that is the motivation. Yeah, let’s get into it.

Karyn Paige 05:03
Gosh, when you think about why you love being a web designer, like what comes to the mind first for you What’s top of mind.

Sam Munoz 05:09
So what’s Top of Mind, right? This particular second is flexibility because I just like traveled home for a month, and just got back today, all I did was I picked up my laptop, you know, packed it in my bag and left, and I’ve been working every day, I’ve been able to check in with clients. I’ve been, you know, building website, writing code, moving the business needle forward from literally any location. And to me, that type of flexibility is really important that we can see flexibility from all different angles. But in this particular moment, that is really speaking to me and top of mind for why I love being a web designer and developer

Karyn Paige 05:47
flexibility is a huge part of it, I think not only based on like location, but also based on time, like the actual time of day that you get to work and how many hours per week that you get to work, especially when you think about like the duration of website project or something that you’re doing for a client, there are times where your work is completed maybe 15 hours a week or something like that. And then there’s other times where you know, it’s going to be more of a investment of like, maybe 35 $40, or something like that. So I personally love being a web designer, because I can plan out my day a little bit more plan out my week. And make space for work make space for personal if I want to exercise in my home gym in the garage on my lunch break, I can’t, you know, I love that flexibility of time,

Sam Munoz 06:37
I feel like we can and should do an entire podcast episode on like the unlearning of being a nine to five working person moving into this type of business. Because I know for a long time I was very resistant to that flexibility in my schedule, right, I would still work those nine to five hours, I always felt like I had to every single day check in on every one of my clients, which like I learned very quickly, not required. First of all, like, you know, there are times when the client has tasks to be working on. And I can have, you know, specific days to check in and focus on things. But I do think that that was very much brought in from my past, working in more traditional job settings. And so I honestly think that a lot of these things that we love can also be not limiting, but things that we don’t even see because we are so ingrained in what we might have previously done. Or maybe what we’ve been previously told, right. So I know that that flexibility of schedule is now something that I am really appreciative of. But it took me a while to take a day off or to stop working at a certain time. And I love it. But it took a minute

Karyn Paige 07:46
100 I feel like that is something that is going to resonate with everybody who’s listening to this podcast who has come from a traditional nine to five office job. And one of the things that really helped me embrace the flexibility of the time. And our schedule, is when I was tracking my work, right. And I would realize how much I could accomplish in maybe like a 20 hour a week schedule. And then I thought, Okay, what was I doing what I was working in office job, most of the time, I was in my coworkers, cubicles talking about Game of Thrones, the productivity thing, right, like really unlearning, like this attachment to being at a desk from nine to five, that’s not really a thing, right? Like when you really compare it embracing the flexibility and really understanding that like your schedule, can can really look however you want it to lead. And also doesn’t need to be structured in this little window of time that we’re all used to.

Sam Munoz 08:42
Yeah, that is flexible in an additional way in the sense that if you want to be super productive, and you are a person that can sit down and like bust out a bunch of work in 20 hours, and you want to charge this much money for a project, like you just increase your hourly rate, right, I love to think about it like that. And that’s another level of flexibility that we don’t have outside of the confines of owning your own business or working in a business with this entrepreneurial mindset where you really are not just being paid to sit there. You’re being paid for the work that you’re doing and the value that you’re providing. And that feels good that feels so good to get paid for the value you provide.

Karyn Paige 09:22
Yeah, absolutely. So Three cheers to flexibility right out of the gate.

Sam Munoz 09:26
I agree. I’m here for it. What’s something that you love about being a web designer and developer? For me, it’s

Karyn Paige 09:31
really like that classic combination of like style and substance like form and function, essentially, it’s like being creative with a purpose and being creative, but also analytical, technological, you know, very, like left brain, right brain, right. So like the work that we do. As a web designer, sometimes it’s almost like styling, you know what I mean? It’s almost like, you’ve got colors, you’ve got fonts, you’ve got elements that you can use, and you have to make choices. To put them all together on a mock up with the design, and that’s the one piece and then being able to like, implement it, get into a computer, get into some software, write some code, and figure out how to make those design visions come to life while also solving the problem of like, okay, the screen is blank. How do I make anything appear? What I just wrote, my code isn’t working or display. Why is that? Oh, it’s because I forgot a semicolon classic, there is an answer for the problem. It’s just figuring out where it is. And I like that, just that beautiful marriage, that beautiful intersection of like, creativity, problem solving math, the techie stem stuff, plus feeling like, I’m practically like a fashion designer or something like that.

Sam Munoz 10:51
I mean, honestly, it makes me think of Legos. Because Legos, to me are like a perfect example of like a form and function kind of a melding, because you’re creating this beautiful thing. And then you’re also following instructions. And it’s all based on like physics. And I have an engineering background. So like, this was a natural step for me to go into the direction of building websites, because there is that stem stuff. But then there’s also all of that creativity, and all of the systems and all of these, like fun problem solving things that we get to do, which makes you like in terms of like, I don’t know, brain chemistry, I guess, right? Like, it feels good to solve problems. And to kind of get that a little check in the box and to achieve something. And I do think that with what we’re doing, it’s very much like, did we create a homepage that has functional buttons? Like check the box? I don’t know, does that make sense? Like, I do like that. It’s not rules, per se. But it’s quantifiable metrics that make a website good. And now we can add the creativity that brings in your point of view, but it’s almost like a shirt, right? In the same way that fashion like a shirt should probably accomplish something to be called a shirt. But the way that you design it is up to you.

Karyn Paige 12:03
Does that make sense? Yes, it does make sense? Because actually, it’s literally like developing it’s like building right? So when you talk about Legos, or I’m talking about, like constructing clothes or something, again, it’s like there’s a very technical, analytical, logical set of like, guidelines to make it so. But then there’s also that again, flexibility, right, in the creativity of how do you make it so what is the, you know, the most ideal creative vision for making it so

Sam Munoz 12:32
and that’s so stimulating that is so stimulating, like, right, like waking up and thinking to yourself, I get to just open my laptop, and I get to build this thing for someone or, you know, I get to build this sample project for this ideal client that I have. And like, I’m thinking about this person and what they could need, we just get to create so much. And this kind of like, makes me think about how in different seasons of business and different seasons of a project, that creativity comes out. Because sometimes it’s like creative problem solving. And sometimes it’s like actual, like more conventional creativity, where you’re like designing something, and you’re adding colors, you know how most people think of creativity, but it’s like, threaded throughout the project is being able to pull from those inspirations. And honestly, I know a lot of people say like, I’m not a creative person. So x, y, and z, but we all have it, right. It’s all in there, we just all have our unique points of view. So creativity with a purpose,

Karyn Paige 13:25
just to like tail end on that. It reminds me a lot of like, gaming and how gaming can be so fun, right? Because there’s so many like hacks that you could figure out and you’re like, Okay, how do I figure out the best or the easiest, or, like, the most clever way to solve this problem, and it’s very rewarding when you do like, it feels like he kind of leveled up, you know, like, when I first started making markups in Adobe XD like, I wasn’t good at it, because I didn’t, I hadn’t like cracked the code, so to speak. I hadn’t like found that easter egg and then I was like, Okay, well, I’ve done a lot of hard things in my life. So I know I’ll get to a place where I’m like proficient and like, smoother making markups. And XD it’s just software, I’ve used other things, you know. So even like being able to transfer creativity and transfer problem solving from other experiences, and then bring it into designs and implementation is also like, incredibly rewarding it to the point where sometimes I’m like, ah, I get to be in Adobe XD today, like that’s my job is creating, that’s incredibly rewarding.

Sam Munoz 14:31
Yeah, honestly, that’s kind of what I was thinking with regards to the whole like quantifiable metrics, like you are able to improve as well. Like there’s always continuous improvement, which I do think and you know, everybody has different things that they enjoy. I think for the ladies listening to us, you all are probably resonating with a lot of what we’re saying because you probably got into this type of industry for one or multiple of these reasons. But yes, that like ability to improve and to just refine your point. interview, cultivate those skills like that is, it is rewarding. That is the best word for it really feels good to get better at it. And I do think that this kind of leads into another point we wanted to talk about, which was being able to create strategies around websites and identify patterns that we see and make better and better versions of like, let’s say the first thing that we ever created, or whatever. So creating strategies, I think is a really fun part of being a web designer and developer, because it’s not just the aesthetics, it’s all of like the behind the scenes stuff that we’re taking into account for our clients. And I find that super enjoyable.

Karyn Paige 15:39
For me, this strategy piece, again, like drawing on the like analogy of like video gaming, like that was the code crack of all cracks for me, like, once I understood that when you’re building a website, there’s like a structure, there’s a user experience, there’s like a psychology of this thing that makes sense for every site, what we expect when we see it. And then to like, level up that strategy, there’s certain choices you can make to take someone on a customer journey to convert someone from a visitor to a client, or like all this stuff, I was like, Okay, let’s go like now that I know, let’s go it made design easier it made getting on Discovery calls easier, it made helping my clients kind of see how everything fits together so much easier. So again, it was like picking up on patterns. You know, it reminds me of like, when I was a little kid, I was really, really good at like those memory games, you know, where you like, you have a series of cards, and you flip them over, and you try to match and try to see and like seeing these patterns at work and seeing like, okay, there are all these commonalities in the work that you’re doing in design, in development, in discovery calls, for example, like, there’s all these structures and all these frameworks. And once I started to like really pick up on that, then I was like, next level, I can’t wait to do more of this.

Sam Munoz 17:05
And what’s cool is that with what we’re doing, we are like helping someone actualize the strategy that they want to have in their business. And we get to help create that into some sort of visual universe that someone can navigate and move in digitally. A lot of our clients have, well, it doesn’t really matter if they have a brick and mortar store, or if they have, you know, just an online business. But people are interacting with their business through an online space. And we get to help make that into like a virtual hub. I’m really going deep here with this idea of like, so there’s like the strategy. And then there’s also like you’re taking someone like bringing them into this virtual universe that you’re creating. And that is so cool. Like that is I play the Sims attend. So this is like very much like in line with that idea. And the patterns and the problem solving, it is all related, right? Everything that we create is it’s just like any other form of art to where it is pulled from other inspiration. And so it is cool to like see those patterns and see what works and what doesn’t work. And one thing that I love that that does relate to this is the idea of being able to translate to our clients, or for our clients. And what I mean by that is, I mean, you we’ve had this experience, Karyn, where like a client might come and say I want this particular thing and might not know the intricacies. And so I find it really fun to think through the strategies of how do we make that happen in the best, most streamlined way. And then conveying that to the client in like an easy to digest understandable like cutting out as much of the jargon as possible and giving it to them and producing it to them in an easy way, which in turn is going to create a really good streamlined website for the non tech person. I know that that went like multiple levels. But do you know what I’m saying?

Karyn Paige 18:49
I know exactly what you’re saying. And I also love that I was also like, let me file this, this talking point for later in the conversation. So I’m glad we’re hitting on it. Because one of my favorite things in life, like something that I just value as a person is making something that seems really like complicated or mysterious, or like even like taboo, like something that just feels confusing, and you don’t understand, like, making it so simple and so accessible and being like, Hey, this is you can do this too. It’s available for you too. It’s not this big, crazy Wizard of Oz. It’s just this little guy behind the curtain. Let’s pull back the curtain and you can see how it works. And then you can actually work it like you can do it. So I absolutely love simplifying problems and kind of like I don’t want to say like distilling them down to their essence or something like that, even though I just said that. But one thing that really has always irritated me about these web design horror stories or like when a client has a website that someone built for them and then they don’t know how to use it and they just feel like totally powerless and like they’re tethered to some web design. Who has ghosted on them? So I’m like, No, like, this is the strategy. This is the pattern. Let me show you that it’s just this thing. And then you feel empowered to like, continue on with it, and use it and play with it and all of these things.

Sam Munoz 20:14
Yes, this honestly is making me think we need another episode about that about, like, how to be a good designer to your clients. How do we take all these things that we love, and make sure that we’re infusing it into the client experience, infusing it into our projects, I think that that would be a really fun thing to talk about. Speaking of clients, I personally love the process of serving clients being a part of their mission and being like, a part of the team and collaborating with them. That is one of the most fun parts of doing this kind of work. Regardless of like the relationship with the client, whether they’re more hands off, or they want to be involved. There is a level of service and helping someone fulfill this thing and bring to life this, this dream that they have. And that is so freakin cool that we get to do that.

Karyn Paige 20:59
Yeah, it really is, like when you think about like someone who’s like, hey, I need a website. And then you’re like, Okay, well, we need to have a conversation in order to draw some things out. And so there have been times, you know, when you’re working with a client, and they’re like, Ah, that’s the thing. That’s the thing that I love. Yes, it feels kind of like synergistic or something like that. Yes, definitely. But yeah, being able to help somebody literally like launch their vision, launch their mission progress, what they’re doing in business to the next level, because it’s now available in the online space. That is incredibly rewarding, especially if you feel connected to that mission, which we’ve talked about, and things like, you know, Episode Three, about dreaming, and Episode Two about like, What even is an ideal client, all that kind of stuff. So being part of, of somebodies team for a little while to make this one project come to life is really fun. And also kind of like, if it’s just you as the web designer, and just one person as the client, like, for a small period of time, like you’re a team, you’re working together, right?

Sam Munoz 22:04
It is so cool to serve clients, like hands down.

Karyn Paige 22:07
So one thing that I love about like the serving, right, like the, in the collaboration, which ties back into like, this idea of like being able to see like patterns and things like that is for me, I really, really love getting to know somebody, getting to know what makes them unique, like getting to know what makes a client unique in this space, that you know what the thing that they do, and then being like, Okay, well, this is what makes you unique. Let’s turn that into a visual representation for your design. And also, when we’re talking about like your copy, or your photos, or like the story that you’re trying to tell and connect with your clients and your customers. Like there’s something that’s just you, I really enjoy that part of the content phase, the discovery call phase, because then I’m like, oh, if this is you, this is something that will align with you in that way visually, or something like that.

Sam Munoz 23:08
It is cool helping them pull it out of themselves, right? Because oftentimes, it’s like, oh, that’s what I was thinking. Like, when they see it come to life. It’s like, that’s what I meant. I couldn’t you know, design it. I couldn’t create it, but like, you got it. Yes. And also just that feeling of like you did it. You nailed it. Being a web designer, just for that alone feels awesome. And I do I love that process of helping someone with that strategy and figuring out what is the best color to use for your call to action? Like, what is that best visual representation? Where should we send people next and then figuring it out with them from an outside perspective? also bringing in our expertise, and it feels good to stand in that space?

It really, really

Sam Munoz 23:48

Karyn Paige 23:49
Yeah, told you there’s like so much goodness, like so much celebration in this conversation. Yeah. The last thing that we thought of in terms of like, why we really love being web designers actually kind of ties back into the first thing we were talking about with flexibility. And it’s just the straight up variety in what we get to do every day. Kind of looks a little different, you know, and so, you know, some days, like we said, you’re in Adobe, XD you’re doing designing some days, you’re just thinking about the design, right? Sometimes you’re just thinking about what’s the best solution for the implementation. You know, some days you’re fully like, head down blinders on coding work developing and then you know, six hours has gone by and you realize you haven’t gotten up but you’re okay with that, you know?

Sam Munoz 24:36
Yes. And it’s it’s fun because I know for me, when I was working like traditional jobs, my biggest thing that would make me stop and say, I can’t do this anymore, I want to do something else or I want to try it, you know, get a different job or you know, at the end, I want to start my own business. I was feeling like, I’m going to be doing this every single day for the rest of my life. And that feels very boring, very limiting and not like where I want to be going with my life. I like the variety, I like the change. And I like the opportunity to switch things up, try something new. I think all of those things feel really, really good.

Karyn Paige 25:10
They feel really good. And also being able to choose when you have the variety, you know what I mean? There are some days where I’m like, the creative juices are not flowing. So I’m going to give myself permission to not worry about that right now. But there’s other tasks that I can be doing to make me feel like I’ve put in a good day’s work. So I’m going to focus on that. And I know I can circle back to the design, and it’ll be there. So like, definitely, like you said, when I know what it’s like, like to work, you know, like our receptionist job where you are stuck, you’re stuck to that desk. And if you even want to get up and go to the bathroom, you better run back, if you hear the phone ring, or you better tell somebody they need to cover you know, so like those types of tasks, those, that type of work felt very limiting, and also like monotonous which can be like soul sucking,

Sam Munoz 25:59
that’s the thing, Karyn, because of the variety, there’s more longevity to what we’re doing. Because like, we can decide to offer a new new service, we can decide to tweak our ideal client, we can decide to you know, try a different coding style, or try a new design style or create a new service. Like I just think that there’s so much variety, and that’s through the entrepreneurial lens. So any entrepreneur could do that. But also with specifically being a web designer and developer because there is so much of that creativity with a purpose, which means because of that creativity, we have more flexibility, we have more options, we have more variety. And that is so so fun, because every day can be exciting. And like we are definitely not saying that every single day in business is going to be easy. And that’s not the intention of business. The intention of business is not Oh, jury show, Huck is a coach of mine. And she mentioned the other day, something about a business does not exist for your entertainment. And I was like, Oh my gosh, yes. Yeah, that’s not the point of it. However, it can still be fun. That’s just not necessarily the intent of it.

Karyn Paige 27:04
It can still be fun. But sometimes you got to eat your broccoli, you know what I mean? Like, sometimes you got to do like those kind of admin tasks or whatever. But when you put that up against, would you rather be doing an admin task in your own home office, where you’re on comfy clothes with your own podcast playing or you know, like your favorite podcast or something like that?

Or would you rather be, can’t even go to the bathroom, can’t even go to the bathroom, nobody is going to call this office, but you still have to be here and sit in front of the phone.

Sam Munoz 27:33
That’s where the gratitude comes in. That’s where having this list and understanding why you do what you do. And thinking about your why and understanding why you love this type of work. It’s going to carry you through those harder days, it’s going to carry you through, you know, that non ideal client project it’s going to carry you through when all of your code doesn’t work, because you forgot that semi colon and you want to like throw your computer out the window. There’s so many good things about what we do. It’s amazing.

Karyn Paige 27:59
There’s so many good things. And I think to kind of tie up that idea of like variety is like every project is a new thing. Even though the project might be the same, like the end result is going to be a website or whatever the if it’s a design, or its maintenance, whatever, the end result always gonna be same. But every client brings variety to it. Every different design brings variety to it. And so I love that too. It’s like, you know, if you think about a project lasting three months, or whatever, it’s like every 12 weeks, there’s something new. Yes, I do love that. And you get to start the whole thing over again in a different way.

Sam Munoz 28:31
Oh, that’s so good. Well, this was so fun for us to do just the two of us. And we wanted to extend this and have you all join the conversation. So hit us up on Instagram and share what you love about being a web designer or developer and if there’s anything we missed, and we really want to know if you felt seen in this episode, if we talked about something where you’re like, Yes, I am obsessed with the creativity with a purpose. I love problem solving. We want to hear it so if you go on Instagram, do a little story and then tag at Hello Sam munos and at Karyn page. Those are Instagram handles if you didn’t know we’d love to see it and have you joined in and tell us what you love about being a web designer and or developer.

The Making Website Magic

School of business

A 6-month mentorship program created for women looking to learn the simple magic behind crafting & selling web design packages to dream clients through discovery calls & intentional networking.

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