Roll Call: Matthew Schrack, Human Swiss Army Knife



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Sanborn is a team of designers, developers, and producers, hard at work to create fluid websites, dynamic apps, high-quality videos, and incredible live experiences. But what really makes our work click are the personalities of those individuals. Get to know us a bit better at Roll Call:

Minnesotan Matthew Schrack spent a formidable time below the Mason Dixon line before eventually traveling back to the lands of seasonal changes. Possibly to avoid hearing “you ain’t from around here.” When not in his home state, most people peg his midwestern roots from a good block away. Through various career steps within the ranks of digital goodness he’s crafted quite the… craft. As likely to be seen holding a drill as a tablet (scary when it’s both), he takes pride in figuring out how to mesh the digital and physical worlds.

What is your most memorable “that’s why I work here” moment?

Which month? I am continually reminded of why I work here. From one-on-one’s that show people care, to big company forced fun. But what it really comes down to is the trust and personal accountability we enjoy. One of the times that gives me a nice warm feeling had little to do with myself. A co-worker was busy between work-life and personal-life, as best man for his brother he was planning a bachelors party in the woods. After many phone calls he asked Chris Sanborn how we rent crew vans and where is the best deal? Instead of answering Chris turned to me and asked, “Don’t we have an account at some place?” To which I answered we did. “Can you book a van for him?” “Sure.” It’s the simple things that we can help one another out on that for someone might take an hour or so, but to others is a 2 minute reflex. It’s what happens when you fill the room with smart people who know different things. The accumulation of that knowledge is shown every day. Just yesterday I asked one of our video guys a question about cameras. He didn’t know the answer but between the two of us an hour later we had a solid solution. Not to mention the inane humor and friendships. It shows when we work in front of others.  Our clients trust us because we trust one another. You never have to ask twice. You know we are going to get it done. And problems that arise rest on everyones shoulders.

It's a Malamute Thing. - Imgur

What sage job wisdom from another employee has really stuck with you?

“You look tired. Go lay down on the couch and take a nap.” – Chris Hadley

(It’s also likely stuck with me because that’s the longest conversation we ever had.)

It’s more of a statement of the company and how you can be you here. Tired? Take a nap. Hungry? Go eat. Do what you want, when you want. Get the work done and be a real person.


What has been your strangest remote work location?

Um… I have to pick only my strangest remote work location? There are too many, I’ll let you choose:

This list makes me sound like a junkie who will do anything for cash.

Minivan gets slammed by wrecking ball - Imgur

What’s your favorite project you’ve ever worked on at SMF? Why?

My favorite project while at Sanborn is also my least favorite. Without giving specifics (confidentiality) it was a giant experiential build.  It flexed all of our capabilities from concept to fabrication to digital goodness. In the first week the fabrication plan fell on it’s face, and we quickly had to adjust.  While the new plan was more familiar to myself, it also meant a lot more labor.  Suddenly everyone from the company was jumping in to help out. People that commonly sit behind desks creating beautiful work were getting dirty welding metal, sanding plastics, and soldering wires. It was one of the most humbling and eye opening experiences as a project lead. The work had to be delegated, and at times I would ask people to work well outside their comfort level. Often on stuff that I didn’t think they were capable of doing. Not only did they prove me wrong — they completed the tasks quicker and better than I could have.


If you could pass one amendment to the constitution, what would it be?

New bills must have a layman’s description of ALL the contents made available to the public. Each congressional member that votes in favor of each bill must publicly read that description out loud, recorded and posted to Youtube.


What software (or hardware?), skill was the biggest waste of time for you?

I don’t care to be negative toward companies that are trying to do something awesome.  So to keep it very vague, I rented a piece of hardware that did not perform. It was to be used as part of a fabrication effort, however it was more of a toy than a tool.  It was cool to look at though…