Last April, Phil Tadros was nominated for the Illinois Technology Association’s CityLIGHTS Award, honoring beacons in local innovation. He had some stiff competition to say the least but he was glad to be in such good company. Spoiler alert: the unparalleled Dan Lyne of World Business Chicago won.
ITA however was gracious enough to profile Doejo for its ITA Spotlight feature. Here’s an excerpt all about our company and current growth.
Who are the founders of your company? What are your company roots?
Phil Tadros and Darren Marshall (CCO and Co-Founder) actually met in one of Phil’s coffeeshops, Noble Tree in Lincoln Park. At the time Phil was operating a series of independent coffeeshops in Chicago and Noble Tree played host to a start-up/entrepreneurial social group called Jelly Chicago that Darren came to. Phil saw Darren working on a graphic design project when Phil approached him, and the rest is history. Before we had our first offices, our designers and developers worked out of Phil’s shops from Dollop in Uptown to Noble Tree and Kickstand in Lakeview. Coffee has and continues to be in the DNA of Doejo. One of our core identities is in building coffeeshops (we just opened BowTruss Coffee Roasters in our old office space last month in fact) which has given us an edge not just in brick-and-mortar building but community building. Our shops and web development products are all about fostering communities and encouraging conversations. And now, we’re a multifaceted start-up incubator/ think-tank creative agency in a stunning office space above Wilde on Broadway in Lakeview, where fresh ideas and coffee are always brewing.
What problem do you solve?
When up-and-coming startups, independent & national chain businesses, web publications, schools & institutions, advocacy groups, Fortune 500 companies and everything in-between need to create or realign its brand identity and online presence, we’re there to provide prodigious design and development from web and print design to video production and mobile app development (many from the ground-up). We help companies accelerate their brand and build on momentum guided by our best practices.
What makes your company special? How is your product differentiated in the eye of the consumer?
Having started in indie coffeeshops where we grew our talented team of designers and developers, Doejo was wrought out of utilizing public spaces as productive community offices. As a web agency that operated almost exclusively under the radar for our first few years, all of our clients came to us by word of mouth. As a humble ground-level company with this scrappy brick-and-mortar background, we’ve learned to hone-in our ability to create community hubs in our digital products and value our non-corporate company culture. Over the years, it’s helped us better understand the needs of clients ranging from startup concepts conceived on a napkin to brand reboots for Fortune 500 companies and renown institutions.
Work Hard/Play Hard or The Early Bird Gets The Worm?
Work Hard/ Play Hard is probably more accurate because we value cultivating an office culture and creative environment that attracts tallent we couldn’t be prouder of. We like to have a good time: we have office lunches in our kitchen (sometimes bringing in a chef or packing lunches and heading to the lake); outings like Thursday’s “Doejo Beers” (where we all regularly meet at a local bar); and in the office you’ll find random toys (Nerf guns, ping pong paddles– yes, we have a ping pong table) and artistic inspiration at every desk. But at the same time, our developers and designers can be seen at the offices past midnight working on work for a client, and are encouraged to start their own tech projects like Jeff’s “Map of the Dead” zombie map and mobile game he’s been working on.