Stories sell furniture.
Aaron Able knows this well: He manages social media and digital content for the Dumbo-based West Elm — which is expanding its local footprint in a major way.
We caught up with Able, 36, a former managing editor of Apartment Therapy, for our occasional How I Work series. He oversees West Elm’s social presence — on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, YouTube, you name it. Oh, and the blog, too.
The East Village resident explains his love for the reverse commute, his pared-down tech setup and the value of a good password manager.
What’s the first thing you do every day before doing any tech-related work?
Read the New York Times Daily Briefings — these have been one of the best updates to the NYT in the last two years and were probably the most basic and easiest to implement. Simple = good.
How often do you check your email, and do you use any program to get to “Inbox Zero”?
Erratically depending on the task(s) underway — I have long since given up on the tech ideal of Inbox Zero.
How do you keep track of your revenues and expenses?
Luckily they are relatively minimal so I can survive relying on the pile-of-receipts method.
When you need to take a break, what are you turning to?
Break? Gothamist is a go-to website — it manages to be locally relevant and completely ridiculous almost simultaneously. For every great piece of local news, there is an equally infuriating gotcha/snark piece that almost makes me give it up. A good book on the Kindle App on my iPhone is great for downtime.
What’s your gear?
iPhone 6+. Citi Bike fob.
What’s one, specific time-saving tip you have?
Ride a bike to work and you will drastically diminish time spent frustrated by the subway/MTA. It’s calming and you get to experience the city.
What’s one way in which you believe your day-to-day work is better now than it has been? Is there something you do now (or don’t do) that you didn’t do before (or did) that has made a big difference?
A good password manager is a huge relief when you manage 100+ passwords for work. This was a game changer for me.
Why Brooklyn for you?
I love the reverse commute! West Elm is rooted in Brooklyn — we were launched here in DUMBO and it’s exciting to watch our own brand creative culture thrive within and alongside the growth of the borough. Plus we have the best view of Manhattan.