Joshua has over 20 years of professional experience in graphic design and related technologies. The first 15 years of his career were spent almost entirely working for high-tech companies in the B2B space, working very closely with engineers with expertise ranging from infrared optics and blackbody research to complex data acquisition and automation middleware. During this time, the design work was largely traditional in scope. Catalogs, brochures and signage design and the like were the mainstays of the workload, however the proliferation of corporate websites, and rich media email marketing broadened the scope of Josh's design work. In the late 90s Josh began working with engineers to develop advanced email generation and deployment far ahead of the curve of marketing standards at the time. In the early 2000s Josh first experimented with independent consulting wherein he began designing and building websites for various clients with a more diverse product offerings and customers. During this time Josh became a vocal proponent of web standards insisting that his clients dispense with embedded technologies on the web at the time such as Java applets and Flash content in favor of semantic markup and better deliverability and a separation of concerns. Always an early adopter Josh has continued to keep his eyes on emerging technologies and new platforms that improve both engineering and user experience.
About 6 years into his first foray into independent consulting business Josh was recruited to work full-time for another data acquisition and automation middleware development company. Due to a highly efficient headcount at this new position, Josh was afforded an opportunity to don new 'hats' and his responsibilities rapidly expanded from digital and traditional marketing materials design to include IT systems management, including networking and VoIP systems. Out of necessity, it was here that Josh was introduced to the wealth of Open Source software. Standing on the smolders of giants Josh was able to single-handedly build a staging environment wherein he built an entirely new web presence including CMS and eCommerce tools that would transform the company’s web presence and internal usability for years to come. For the organization requiring only limited external support to stand up in production. During the remainder of his career here Josh became obsessed with process automation and deep documentation in preparation for departure, as finding someone with broad knowledge related to his multiple responsibilities would be difficult. As such departure was greatly simplified.
It was at this time that Josh spent a few years working full time for a series of Startups with deep focus on user experience design, and design communication, to improve the communication of complex interaction designs to engineers for implementation, and becoming familiar with many of the new design tools emerging from this new age of application development.
When the last of the start ups closed its doors, Josh was suffering from technical burnout, and opted to refocus his efforts on design. It was at this time that he was also forced by circumstances to enter the market again as an independent consultant. While attempting to eliminate web and app development technology from his workload Josh began to find an increasing amount of work requiring his aesthetic skills, he eventually found himself designing digital marketing collateral for Spartan Race, Inc., and was able to care out a brief space in his career devoted solely to the aesthetics of marketing communication.
Eventually recruited by Spartan full time, Josh’s experience in web and email technologies were uncovered by a comedy of internal communication errors and was subsequently absorbed into the technology department. While not what he was hoping to do, this afforded explosive new opportunities to build and manage a team of developers and content managers to deliver a web development cycle that had gone over budget and been delayed considerably. It was during this time that Josh expanded his experience in team management and he migrated his thinking from a ‘do it all yourself’ mentality to a distributed responsibility model that greatly increased throughput and departmental capacity.
While team management was a tremendous growth opportunity for Josh, the continuously growing need for the corporate charade of meetings that could have been emails and emails that should be meetings, Josh again began to architect and execute yet another exit strategy. This time rather than drafting documentation for hand off, he hired new team leadership, promoted a number of team members, and improved their compensation packages to ensure their continuation, and carved out a low-impact, cross-departmental UX leadership role with a reduced team size. Once his former team were taken care of, he began coordinating with third parties to line up contract work, and once again left corporate to start Abbreviated Media.
What isn’t covered above is that Josh has had extensive experience in film and video production that predates his professional career, as early as age 11, when he worked as a volunteer camera operator at a local access cable channel. While working professionally in creative technology services Josh has been in and out of a number of film and video productions as a hobbyist, and has been connected with a number of production companies along the way. Abbreviated Media is a creative services company which leverages an agency model borrowed from the Film and Television industry as opposed to the standard creative agency model. In truth it is more like an agency by definition than most agencies actually operate. Abbreviated Media a.k.a. “Abrev’d” which is a visual pun, in that it is the word abbreviated abbreviated, is in truth just Joshua Mormann himself operating or doing business as, Abbreviated Media. Rather than chasing billable hours as a typical agency might, to keep a team of any size employed, Abrev’d keeps its costs to an absolute minimum by hiring talent on an as-needed basis. This allows for a more nimble day-to-day business practices, while maintaining the ability to ramp up for virtually any scope.
Rather than needing a full-time team with narrow scope of expertise Abrev’d is able to leverage a growing roster of experts in a number of creative and business fields. While this approach is cost effective at smaller scales, the eventual goal of Abrev’d is to develop and distribute products to generate a passive income, thus allowing for and eventually requiring team growth. This approach to team growth however will prevent Abrev’d from ever needing to adopt the typical ‘billable hour’ chasing that plagues most agency models at scale.