Managing Principal / Founder
I have a few personal mantras: 1) Don’t be a jerk 2) Everything is changeable 3) Life is better together
If I'm not building something, I'm probably bored
Paul Weinert is our founder, managing principal and spirit animal. He’s one of those odd people you meet that was born in Portland, grew up here and still lives here for some reason. If you had two words to describe Paul after meeting him, we'd bet you'd use "charmingly quirky".
Paul started GRAYBOX in February 2009, and for the first four years, GRAYBOX had a blend of a contract staffing firm and a traditional agency. GRAYBOX then hired our first employees in 2012 and has been growing ever since. Professionally, Paul has a background in internet business consulting, working especially with mid-market ecommerce, healthcare, and tech companies. He worked as a user experience designer, web developer and internet marketer. Nowadays, Paul serves as our company visionary, team mentor and head of executive leadership — Paul is extremely proud of the entire team and the company. He’s constantly humbled by the team’s awesomeness and the caring community that’s sprung up from his initial ideas.
Beyond GRAYBOX, Paul is married, has two young boys and lives in NE Portland. He’s also an active foster parent, mentors other local entrepreneurs, and volunteers on local non-profit boards. Businesswise, aside from GRAYBOX, Paul has started a few other businesses and is an active investor in the local startup scene.
For the sheer joy of it, let’s play 2 truths and a lie:
- Paul firmly believes that any activity would be better if on a boat.
- Other than this whole Internet thing, Paul has basically no other skills or expertise in anything.
- Paul gained 85 lbs in 2-years when starting GRAYBOX (Don't judge, it was a stressful time!).
What word would you add to the dictionary if you could? What would it mean?
I don't know what this means about my personality, but I've always thought it was amazing that some other languages have multiple words for something we have just one of. (Inuit's have 50 words for snow, or there are 15 sub-types of rain in Scotland.) I don't know about how confusing that is for little kids growing up there, but I just love the precision of it.
I feel like in the digital field we have the opposite problem. How is everyone a "designer" now? What does a "developer" even mean anymore? There are literally hundreds of programming languages, and I wish we had more precise words to describe skill sets, experience levels, approaches, etc — so that we could better describe and find each other.
So I suppose, if I had my druthers, I'd add like 25 new words to better describe what we do in this new digital realm so we could actually talk about it with more specificity.