#WFH Diaries: Jan Knauss of +KNAUSS
As the COVID-19 pandemic gallops along, we're checking in with the creative industry to see how people are doing. Here's what's up with Jan Knauss, founder and managing director at +KNAUSS.
Give us a one-sentence bio of yourself.
I'm Jan Knauss, Bavarian and founder of +KNAUSS agency.
Where are you living right now, and who's with you?
I'm in Hamburg, together with my fiancée and son.
(That's from him—guess he is more art director than copywriter.)
What's your work situation like at the moment?
To be honest, I think home office sucks! Creativity is a one-on-one, ping-pong, back-and-forth kind of business. I work from an office in my bedroom, and that's not where work magic happens. To have my best creativity and productivity, I need to get out there and observe.
Plus, an after-work happy hour beer at home is just not the same.
Describe your socializing strategy.
FaceTime and Zoom with family and friends. Actually, the biggest surprise is getting in contact with the people who've been closest to me for years—my neighbors. Nice people.
How are you dealing with childcare?
I'll use this opportunity to thank my fiancée Judith, who is now taking very good care of two children.
What are you reading?
I have a great selection of books stacked on my nightstand that make me look smart. But right now all I read is the Beastie Boys Book, the autobiography by Michael Diamond and Adam Horovitz.
What are you watching?
The last series I finished was Game of Thrones. Don't get me started. After that, Lost didn't feel like such a waste of time.
What are you listening to?
Pure ear candy—my son's limited selection of children's songs. The German podcast Fest & Flauschig.
[Editor's note: Fest & Flauschig ("Firm & Fluffy"), created in 2016 as a spin-off of radio show Sanft & Sorgfältig ("Gentle & Thorough"), is hosted by satirist Jan Böhmermann and musician Olli Schulz. Their discussions about the world, their lives and totally fictional events have apparently made it Spotify's most successful podcast ever. True story.]
How are you staying fit?
I have a home trainer who I am very well-trained at ignoring.
Have you taken up a hobby?
I'm doing a lot more cooking, which is both fun and an opportunity to do something physically productive after eight hours of Slack marathons and ignoring my home trainer.
Any tips for getting necessities?
We shop once a week, mostly at our neighborhood market, in order to support the local community and avoid crowded supermarkets.
An awkward moment since all this started.
When I realized toilet paper is vitally more important than water in Germany.
Best work email you got since all this started.
When IT called: "Check your email—it should be working now."
An aha! moment since all this started.
Being a teacher is a proper and useful job. Pay them more!
What's your theory on how this is going to play out?
There are moments when the future changes direction, and that's exactly what's happening right now. Thinking optimistically—which is how I like to—the world will come to appreciate life more, in every aspect. Fingers crossed.