Hi, I’m Jean-Francois.
Over time, my name has evolved from:
…and lately, JK (thank you, Migs)..:0).
But still, J.F. is mostly used now. Well, …that’s the burden of having a long composed name.
I’m 38, born and raised on the west coast of Mauritius. :0)
WHAT’S UP WITH THE BEARD?
One frequently asked question I get all the time is…
“Why the beard?
Shave it… it’s grey.
You look old with it!”
Sincerely, I don’t know why I have it.
It’s just that I’m more at ease wearing my beard around. It’s part of who I am now. It’s my identity and one thing for sure…
I WILL NOT SHAVE IT!
I like to take care of it, comb it, wash it, dry it, and put on my beard balm and oil every morning. For those who want to have one… just give it a try!
You may never want your baby face back again. :0)
WHAT DO I DO FOR A LIVING?
I’m the Graphic Design and Brand Identity Executive at DX TEAM.
Oh oh! This sounds serious!
Not really, in fact, I’m responsible for building and maintaining the Visual Identity of the DUCORP Group and its other subsidiary companies based on the different branding and communication strategies being developed right now.
This is so exciting! Isn’t it?
My fellow friends from the graphic design community will understand that this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that could not be missed.
It’s been 4 weeks now and I can tell you that we have been very productive, working in synergy to try to find the most appropriate design solutions. There have been loads of discussions, but we are getting there!
WHAT’S MY PROFESSIONAL BACKGROUND?
Ever since high school, I was always wondering who did the advertisements in newspapers and billboards around the island. After some investigation work on my 28 kbps internet connection on Netscape, I discovered the term “graphic design” and that was it!
That was the job I wanted to do!
In the year 2000, the vocational training institution (IVTB) ran by the government offered the only course in graphic design. It was very difficult to gain admission into the program because there were only 20 seats available.
I got an offer for fashion design from the same institution, but that was not what I wanted to do for a living and studying abroad was not an option because of the cost.
By serendipity, a friend told me about DCDM Business School (now Charles Telfair Campus [CTC]) and this is where my career in the creative industry started.
After gaining a diploma in graphic design from the AAA School of Advertising, I joined an internship with my dream advertising agency, Circus, in November 2002.
As a young designer, I knew I did not know enough to perform to the level of expectations of Circus. But, I prevailed because that is where I wanted to work!
It’s hard to join an elite team of designers and strategic thinkers when you have just started your journey and you try to make your way through such talented people.
My 5-year stay there was more than enriching, not only as a graphic designer but also in terms of human interaction. The whole experience is what made me today as a professional. All of my failures and successes have been an opportunity for me to grow as an individual, a designer, and a responsible person, and they taught me to do better every time, project after project.
Overall, my positive fighting spirit indulged in a passionate desire to give my very best in whatever I undertake.
After 5 years at Circus (oh, and I completed a degree in graphic design, along the way), I just could not refuse an opportunity to teach. That was my first battle between the heart and the brain.
The heart was telling me that I would love teaching, and the brain was telling me that Circus was where I was meant to be. But, I was curious to know if I would ever like teaching.
So, the heart won over the brain.
I joined Charles Telfair Institute on the April’s Fools Day of 2008…and that wasn’t a joke.
I was back to school.
At the height of my 28 years, with a moderate amount of technical and academic skills gathered from the industry, I was fundamentally convinced that it was enough for me to guide students in their studies to gain enough skills to join the workforce.
Teaching has brought me so much in terms of patience and empathy, the ability to share and gain knowledge, to grow as a person and a graphic design professional. It was an opportunity for me to ignite a passion for graphic design, to impart integrity and academic skills to young graphic designers to be.
I have met wonderful, genuine people who would spend their nights and weekends preparing courses and correcting assignments to make sure that students have proper feedback so that they can progress in their studies.
This is what I call dedication.
This is what I retained throughout the 10 years plus at CTI. It was a true privilege to witness the evolution of DCDM Business School from CTI to Curtin Mauritius today. This is proof that under great vision and proper leadership that everything can grow in the right direction and that things can only get better.
WHY DX TEAM?
I am not an opportunist, but whatever I do, it’s because I believe in the genuine philosophy of the endeavour.
DX TEAM’s offer came at the right moment in my life where I had a very important phase of self-questioning in my career prospects. I had been teaching for 10 years, met some milestones, did my very best to be supportive to my students and I did an M.A Degree in design (another dream which came true).
I felt that I was ready for another challenge.
Academic research was more than what I wanted as the next step in my career. Genuine research would contribute to the design community at large. Unfortunately, it is not always what you want that is given to you or is reachable at a particular moment in your life.
When I met James, for the first time, I instantly connected to his vision of DUCORP.
I will summarize this encounter into one hashtag:
The whole philosophy of DUCORP is based on stories of people.
You, me, them…we all have something to share.
We all have responsibilities towards the community.
We all have skills and knowledge that could help others blossom to become the people they need to be.
This is how we progress as a team, a business, an enterprise, as a village, as a city, as a country, and as a whole world.
We have no choice but to work together to meet our objectives, to grow as a community, and to grow as individuals.
To cut it short, DX TEAM is a natural choice for my next step into a challenging endeavour which stands for noble causes.
The main objective is to put talents together to create “unique businesses” and this is what is going to happen!
We will make things happen!
Well, that was a part of my life and experiences that I wanted to share with you.
Stay tuned for our next posts.
We will update as we cruise through the different steps of the brand building of DUCORP and DX TEAM. ‘Till then, share with us #storiesthatmatter.
If you have any questions or feedback, please feel free to post your comments.
First posted in X-Team Academy.