My Name is Mills. I Am Mills.
These are things I need you to know about me.
I want you to know why I think you might like my new JFDI Cast which I launched 20 days ago. I am also hoping this post will inspire you to write a similar post on you which I can read. Can you write 33 things you want the world to know about you?
I realised I hadn’t made any actual effort to explain who I was or why you should care.. And you might not care but the below gives you a feelz of who the human behind the serendipitous verbal externalised inner monlougue.
My Podcast as been labelled raw, honest, fresh, actionable and real. It’s also been called complete nonsense. Which I like the most. It’s a podcast for anyone who wants to get off their arse and just DO. Too much of life is procrastination. So stop overthinking and sign up!
- I am almost 40 and go by the name Mills. I only ever wear shorts. I do this because I don’t believe in formality, I believe in being yourself all the time. For me, shorts represents being comfortable in my own skin. I wore them to 10 Downing Street and then again recently when I turned up pure mills.
- This is what makes me happy.
- I just completed my first 40 Mile Ultra Run and I recorded the ultra pain of it in realness JFDI video ~ check it out and laugh here.
- I am basically someone who is ultra hype or ultra down. I embrace the downs these days and just see them as refuel opportunites. I cannot help but like everyone I meet. I like to see the best in people. I have the tendancy to forget about things not right infront of me.
- When I was growing up I always stayed strong on my admission that Westlife were my favourite Band (if you call them that) of all time. Trust me this was not an easy thing to admit to growing up. I proud of not wavering from something I liked.
- I am lucky to have the support of a strong family behind me. I have been with my wife Lis for 20 years (We met at uni, married in 2007), we have two legend kids - Gracie (9) and Louis (7).
- Because of Lis I was able to put everything and more into ustwo for the last 15 years.
- In August 2017 I made some ‘major’ changes to my life. I stopped drinking Alcohol in July — I wrote about why here.
- I open up about my own mental health Journey on the Sanctus Podcast
- I believe whole heartedly that mental and physical health are intertwined. I talk about how this connection inspired me to take on a 100 Mile race in 2018 - video here (also the start of me feeling comfortable infront of the camera).
- If you try anything in life, make it running. I am now training to be an Ultra Runner. Through this, I am a proud ambassador of TRIBE natural sports nutrition. I talk to them about why I made these changes using words here.
- I vlog my #TheRoadTo100 (I am running a 100 mile race this year) weekly here. I have 100 Subscribers!!! how apt!
- On 1st March of this year I decided to start the JFDI cast. It was a total awakening of the real me which had been holed up inside my own brain. I talk about the first one here.
- I co-founded ustwo 15 years ago — one of the only privately owned digital product/service, games and investment design companies in the world. I am proud that is was in partnership with my best mate Sinx. We built the company we wanted to work at, and on the foundations of deep friendship. We are talking about this weekly on the JFDI podcast. I am especially proud of the culture of acceptance and togetherness that we have created. We refer to ustwo as a Fampany. Here is our Cultural Manifesto and a little video about us.
- After 15 years Sinx and I still feel like we are learning how to be the boss.
- We will never ever sell ustwo. Selling ustwo would be the biggest failing of our lives. ustwo is our platform for meaningful impact and we intend to do our bit to change the world for the better.
- 2018 is special for Sinx and I because we no longer operationally run ustwo studios (or Games and Adventure for that matter!). We proudly announced our first ever studio CEO just recently. This is the single most important move we ever made. I wish we had done it earlier.
- Loyalty is important to me. As an example, at ustwo studios we demonstrate this by giving anyone who stays with us for ten years, £10,000 and ten weeks paid leave to use as they wish. We call this Ten Ten Ten.
- Tim Cook actually flew to the UK to spend time in our ustwo games studio. (see pic at bottom for proudness)
- I recently realised I was the only thing trapping myself. I spoke about how I released my inner budgie on my podcast.
- ustwo is made up of three seperate businesess under one Fampany Roof (employing around 300 humans). ustwo studios (where we work with our favourite clients), ustwo Games (where we produce our own games), and ustwo Adventure (where we incubate over 120 awesome humans who I deeply care about on our Playground floor, and invest in new businesses). Right now it’s still a bit confusing but I am fine with that, we’re always evolving as a business.
- ustwo studios believe in putting their money where their mouth is. For example, when we wanted to start working with health related clients we demonstrated our passion with our Joint Ventures — Designing, building and releasing Moodnotes, Sway and Pause. We are now following the same passion in the Auto sector.
- I was proud when Offscreen Magazine wrote about me and my Fampany. I love to give fun actionable advice, especially on how to build companies with values at their heart and missions in the radar.
- My email is email@example.com. I like giving advice to people who reach out and make an effort to communicate. I talk pure honesty on twitter and to see my Fam/Fampany life in pictures, there’s instagram.
- This year I started more officially learning how to mentor humans – I’m so proud to be learning and mentoring with Creative Mentor Network. Here I am with Zoe my incredible mentee.
- I wrote about the impact on me not spending time with my kids when they were young and how proud I was when we made Paternity and Maternity equal. I called this story Family before Fampany.
- While spending all our ustwo life building the largest independent Client Product Service agency in the universe, we also spent 8 years releasing our own products (we called them Succailures — successful failures). They were amazing learnings we take to future projects. We made the award winning game Monument Valley which won Apple Game of the Year in 2014, 2 Bafta’s, multiple other awards and appeared in House of Cards Episode 5, Series 3 and had an insane boost on sales. In fact it was the key plot line of the whole episode. A very proud moment.
- I will always be the most proudest of our first ever game Whale Trail though, and more to the point this first minute of film promoting it.
- The main reason I was proud of Monument Valley was because everyone thought we were crazy making it. At that time, ustwo was not a gaming company, Monument Valley was a side project. We invested $1,000,000 on making something beautiful,something we believed would make a positive impact on the world. All I asked of the team was to use the freedom (one of our 5 ustwo values).
- I sent them an email prior to making the game with a simple outline of what I wanted them achieve and then left them to it(ish).
- We surprised the world in 2017 by both announcing and releasing the Sequel, Monument Valley 2 (a story about the relationship between a mother and her child) on the stage of Apple’s WWDC conference. We documented the whole launch experience on film.
- We believe in transparency. Here are the Monument Valley numbers up to 2016. In total the MV franchise has made around $30,000,000 and more importantly helped to change the perception of mobile gaming.
- I respect so many people in this world but if I had to choose a few that have impacted me recently (this doesn’t mean I don’t utterly love and get inspired by so many more humans) then it would be Dem, Sam, Justin, Tamsin, David Hieatt, Nafisa, Ben, Rin, Rich, Alex, Robyn, Kodj, Mario, Grace, Sinx, Nicholas Jenkins Smith, Harry, Ryan, Isabel, Studio Something’s and our new CPO Sinead who is unquestioably the biggest game changer in ustwo’s history (I just don’t know any of her socials!).
- Through ustwo adventures, I have made 22 investments to date (We invest £600,000 a year into new companies because we want to learn together, support amazing values and mission driven humans — if you are interested in knowing more email Justinm@ustwo.com as he is now the Adventure Director) I recently realised there was a major problem with how I was selecting companies to invest in. I was biased. Unconscioulsy so but biased none the less. I am now focussed on re addresisng this with the team, I wrote about it here.
- This year we are commiting £120,000 to Creative Career mobility as part of our new ustwo Foundation (we call it a Fun’dation) and it’s our foray into philanthropy. In short, we are supporting enablers who enable people to get into the creative industries. We wrote about this here.
- I cannot stand non doers. I have spent my life trying to get non doers to do things and now I have given up. I am now focussing all my energy on people who do want to do. Don’t Don’t, Just Fucking Do It.
- I was recently nominated for an Industry Visionary Award 2018. The award isn’t important to me. I was however very humbled by the personal description written by the guy who nominated me. If you only read one thing on this page I’d ask it be this.
My intention with my JFDI Cast is to build a platform I can use to connect and support as many people as I can. I realised recently that I get most out of life when helping people and now I am aiming to do this on a wider scale. I am demonstarting the very JFDI Mantra I preach by just starting and learning as I go. I talked about this realisation yesterday.
thank you… especially to Hannah Edwoods who illustrated the amazing picture of me without me knowing. It’s brilliant.