Rick started with Bluespark as the User Experience Director, before transitioning to CEO in 2015. As a UX designer by trade, Rick brings a thoughtful and strategic approach to leadership.
“To develop great user experiences, you must have empathy for your users,” Rick says. “You must take time to understand what people need and find innovative solutions to those problems. Leadership is very similar. You empathize with your clients. You empathize with your team. And you nurture a culture.”
It’s the focus on culture and strategy that keeps Rick always moving Bluespark forward, both for its clients and for its employees. Working closely with Michael Tucker, he has helped implement an environment where everyone is an expert — where everyone has both authority and responsibility to make the decisions they need to make. And this is what lead to the implementation of Holacracy at Bluespark.
“In many ways, the ideals of Holacracy capture the spirit of Bluespark — we are a community of experts and we are all empowered to act,” Rick says. “When you bring great people together, you don’t want to bog them down with unnecessary bureaucracy. Likewise, you don’t want them stepping all over each other’s toes. You need a system that allows people to do what they do well.”
To make the most of every opportunity, Rick continues to work closely with clients, the creative team, and the technical team to ensure projects are the right fit for Bluespark and Bluespark is the best fit for its clients.
Still active in the UX community, Rick co-founded the Interaction Design Association, an international organization focused on the advancement and promotion of interaction design and, in 2006, served as President of TriUPA, a group committed to supporting usability and interaction design professionals in North Carolina’s Triangle area.
Rick and his wife, Gina, now live in central Illinois with their three children.