Work life of Greg Johnson, founder of Orbital Socket

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(Note: Our How I Work series is brought to you by AccruePartners – building people, companies and careers by being at the forefront of the staffing and executive search industry).

I know Greg and I love Greg. With experience at Nike, Johnson & Johnson and BooneOakley — he’s easily one of the top marketers in Charlotte. More importantly, he’s a great father, mentor and faith leader. Let’s see how Greg works.

Greg leads Orbital Socket, a Charlotte ad agency that describes itself as “a multi-dimensional highly skilled team of creative strategists that leverage customer behavior and cultural context in developing user-centered connections to identify new meaning to products, services, experiences and thus companies.”

Job Title:

Founder and managing director

Office location:

PORTAL Building, UNC Charlotte campus — a premier workspace and innovation center for regional and global business pioneers. Orbital is an advisor company to Ventureprise.

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Commute:

20 minutes. I-77 South to I-485 North to campus. Breezy and easy.

What do you do during your communte?

I listen to books on Audible. Just finished The Courage to Act by Ben Bernanke and I am currently listing to Good Profits by Charles Koch.

Phone Type:

iPhone 6

Phone homescreen photo:

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Desk setup:

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Computer:

Mac Book Pro (regret ever using a PC)

Gadgets you can’t live without:

iPhone, Mac Book Pro

Do you listen to music while you work?

Yes. Smooth jazz and Christian.

What software are you a power user of? 

Evernote and Keynote.

What’s your favorite spot for a business lunch? Your order? 

Nan and Byron’s. Those chicken tacos are so good. Hard to listen to conversation when eating them.

Social media habits:

I still use Facebook. I have lots of friends. Of course they’re all my friends.

To-do list manager: 

Google Task Manager for daily to-dos and Basecamp for projects.

What everyday thing are you really good at? 

Focusing on what matters most and getting it done (The Pareto Principle) and I think motivating/inspiring team member. However, the team members may not think so.

What’s your one favorite thing about your job? 

Creating hope and possibility for people and businesses. Powerful stuff.

Best time-saving shortcut or Charlotte life hack:

Join the Y. Everybody who matters belongs to the Y.

Sleep routine: 

Try to get some. Midnight to 6 a.m.

Where do you go around Charlotte to get away from the office? 

The movies. I love movies. Manor Theatre and AMC Northlake. And Lake Norman.

What did you eat for breakfast this morning? 

Pineapple, Starbucks pastry and coffee. It was a cheat day. I normally just eat something from Hardee’s.

If you weren’t doing your current job, what would you be doing?

Pastor at a church. It’s my true calling and passion.

Best job advice you’ve received:

The person with the bigger title’s opinion is just that, their opinion.

Last book you read (grade it on a A-F scale):

How to Think like Leonardo da Vinci by Michael J. Gelb. A.

Last movie you watched (grade it on a A-F scale): 

The Martian. B+.

What’s one thing people don’t know about Charlotte that they should? 

There are lots of great things going on on the campus of UNC Charlotte. It’s a world-class organization. Especially Ventureprise which is producing companies that are going to be global leaders in technology and innovation.

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Is there anything else that we didn’t ask that you’d like to tell our readers?

Yes, I did live in Portland, Oregon for 15 years but I love being in Charlotte. It’s a great city. I’ve been everywhere and lived in a lot of places but Charlotte is home. We will be the envy of every other city. Just watch.

Also, I love my Carole, who started the company with me and we have four children.

What other Charlottean would you like to answer these questions? 

Joe Pierce, vice president and general counsel for the Charlotte Hornets.

All photos taken by Carolina Joy Johnson, Greg’s daughter. 

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Ted Williams
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Publisher, golfer, dad and magician (seriously).