Joanna Pineda

About Joanna Pineda

Joanna’s business card reads CEO/Chief Troublemaker for a reason. She relishes a challenge and introduces change wherever she goes. She knows anything is possible and that clients come to Matrix to hear "Yes", not "No." Matrix is purple because of Joanna. Staff like to call her JP.

How Matrix Group Maintained Communications During Hurricane Sandy

Hurricane Sandy tore through the East Coast but Matrix Group managed to stay open. On Sunday night, after the federal and local government and all the local schools announced they would be closed Monday and Tuesday, I decided to keep the office open because our non-local clients need us to stay open. Local clients often need us to update their sites when they can’t do it themselves and because the last quarter of the year is always a a busy time for us.

While a few people made it into the office both days, most of us worked from home. Here’s what we did to maintain communications between staff and keep the work (and the jokes!) flowing:

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Cool Tools: Hubspot’s Marketing Grader

Looking for ways to promote your website or blog better? Try HubSpot’s Marketing Grader.

Marketing Grader is a free service from HubSpot. You type in your website or blog URL + your e-mail address and in under a minute, you get great advice re: your blogging practices, SEO, integration with social media platforms, analytics and mobile friendliness. I asked Marketing Grader to grade, which is my corporate blog, and I got recommendations about blogging more often (probably not going to happen), getting more people to share my blog posts on Facebook (I’m doing great on Twitter!), and setting up a mobile stylesheet (in the works!).

Marketing Grader is worth the 5-10 minutes you’ll spend creating and reading the report. It will be up to you to come up with an action plan based on the results.

Let us know about any similar tools that you’ve discovered.

Sometimes You Have to Stop and Smell the Jet Fumes

On Tuesday, April 17, the Space Shuttle Discovery, NASA’s oldest surviving shuttle, made one more flight, this time to its last home, Matrix Staff watch for Discoverythe Smithsonian’s amazing Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center near Dulles Airport. Before touching down at Dulles, Discovery did a flyover across the DC area while strapped on to the back of a 747. Knowing that our office in Crystal City, close to the Potomac River and National Airport, was in Discovery’s flight path, we all waited eagerly for its arrival from Florida.

Needless to say, not much got done around the office around 10am as the entire staff waited for Discovery to come into view. We watched from the roof, from my office (which has views of the Potomac), from Eric’s office (which has views of the Washington monument) and the bike path along the Potomac. We took pictures, we tweeted, we posted on Facebook, we uploaded our photos, and we joined the conversation with the hashtag #spottheshuttle on Twitter.

Even though we’re pretty busy, it was just plain fun to take a break, go up to the roof, enjoy the gorgeous weather and cheer like schoolchildren when Discovery came into view. Yep, we lost some billable time, but sometimes, you’ve got to stop and smell the jet fumes.We’re all still smiling about seeing Discovery. It was a special event, not to be missed.

Did you get a chance to watch Discovery in its final tour? Where were you?

Introducing Snack O’clock

Geoff Harcourt and Ray Stankiewicz enjoy our fiscal year end party in 2011It’s 3pm. A group of Matrix Group staff are climbing up 14 flights of stairs (to our office on the 12th floor) to get a bit of exercise. Around 4pm, a different group goes to the deli downstairs for a snack. If you’re like us, you often need a brain break in the middle of the afternoon to clear your mind and get the blood flowing again.

Enter snack o’clock, Matrix Group’s new blog, which will feature brain food for Web developers and designers. A couple of times a week, we’ll feature cool CSS tricks, discuss sites we loves, show off something cool we just programmed, let you know about upcoming web trends, and share a favorite book or resource.

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