Leadership Lessons from Design Hell

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“When you are going through Hell, keep going.”

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4 June 1940: Battle of Dunkirk

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Operation Dynamo: The Great Evacuation

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338,226 Soldiers Were Rescued

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68,000 British Casualties

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290,000 French Casualties

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June 10, 1940: Three Historical Facts

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June 14, 1940: Paris Falls

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June 23, 1940: Hitler Visits Paris

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28 June 1940: Europe

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“The Battle for France is Over.”

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“Battle of Britain is About to Begin.”

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“When you are going through Hell, keep going.”

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How You Can Change the World?

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Why Leadership?

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Research and Testing Expert

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International Speaker

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Writer of Books and Articles

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Keynote Author on SlideShare

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Addison Treehouse Mentor

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SMU Instructor for UX

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UXPA Dallas President

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Coached Boy’s Soccer (104-12)

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Conference Organizer

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Ethics of Leadership

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Ethics is not about: “Do This” and “Don’t Do This”

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Ethics answers this profound question: “What makes me happy?”

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“When you are going through Life, keep going.”

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You are here!

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Pride is believing you are better than someone else. Pride (or hubris) is the most common flaw in Greek tragedies and myths. Dante and Virgil see prideful people must carry heavy rocks that force them to bow down and be more grounded.

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How does a design leader account for pride in themselves and their team?

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Are You Really Doing These Things? User Research Usability Testing

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“Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it is thinking of yourself less.”

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Whose Shoes? User Research

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“Before you walk a mile in my shoes, you have to take your own shoes off.”

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Insights or Ammo? Usability Testing

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We talk about: “Know Thy User.” We should also say: “Honor Thy User.”

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Envy is a jealous feeling or a very resentful longing for someone else’s possessions or qualities. It is when you covet what they have. When Dante and Virgil meet envious people, their eyes have been sewn shut. They lose outer sight, but they gain insight.

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How does a design leader handle envious people, especially gossiping?

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Know the Nuances Discussions Grapevine Gossip

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Discussions are Positive Workplace discussions are usually: • Friendly • Informational • Supportive Discussions There are no character assassinations or bullying in these conversations.

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Heated Discussions are Positive, Too Heated discussions are fine, when you: • Use a respectful tone • Listen to other viewpoints • Focus on the problem, not the person Discussions A heated discussion probably means you are working on a wicked problem.

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“In a heated discussion, ask yourself this question: Is it personal or personality?”

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Grapevine = Rumors Grapevine rumors usually run amok because of: • Poor communication • Changes in the workplace • Wild guesses by the staff Grapevine Grapevine rumors can be very damaging and demoralizing. They can spread like wildfire, too.

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Gossiping is about Envy Gossipers want attention. They will: • Adopt a confidential tone • Impart details to undermine a person • Do character assassinations • Create a me-versus-them mentality Gossiping You probably hear more information than you want.

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When You Get Targeted 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. Don’t take it to heart. Focus objectively. Deal with it as a task. Arm yourself with facts. Review the context Assess the sources. Be a source of reassurance. Confront the gossipers directly.

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When Others Get Targeted Don’t participate in the gossip. Ask gossiper about their motivation. Focus on projects, not people. Talk about competitors, not co-workers. Tell gossiper you are prepared to follow-up with the targeted person. 6. Talk about the positive aspects of the person. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

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“The best revenge is massive success.”

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Wrath is a vindictive anger, where you seek to destroy a person. Wrath lasts longer than whatever provoked it. In Dante’s Purgatory, smoke fills the eyes of wrathful souls. They find it hard to see and breath.

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How does a design leader manage their own anger? And the wrath of others?

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“I’m going to destroy Android because it is a stolen product. I’m willing to go to thermonuclear war on this.” --Steve Jobs, 2010

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“You cannot expect rational thinking from an irrational person.”

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Rationalization Blame Justification

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Focus on Solutions Use Humor Tell a Friend

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“Some people come into your life as blessings. Other people come into your life as lessons.” -- Mother Teresa

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Sloth is simply being lazy: mentally and spiritually. On Mount Purgatory, Dante and Virgil encounter: • Lazy people that constantly move. • Other lazy people jog and climb. • The laziest run at top speed forever.

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How does a design leader stay motivated? How do they keep their people engaged?

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Manifestations of Laziness Apathy Entitlement

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Manifestations of Laziness Giving Up Finger Pointing

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Live in the Moment

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Develop a Mission Driven Mindset

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Change Behaviors

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Develop Keystone Habits

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Keystone Habits for Designers User Research Usability Testing

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Hard Work = Integrity

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“Work is not punishment. It’s a reward that gives you strength and pleasure.”

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Greed is an insane desire to acquire (or possess) more than you need. It can lead to bribery, hoarding, and stealing. Dante and Virgil see greedy people lie naked on the ground because they were concentrated on Earthly possessions.

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How does a design leader handle greedy or possessive people?

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Design Joke on Facebook • I design everything • I design, you watch • I design, you advise • I design, you help • You design, I help • You design, I advise • You design, I watch • You design everything $100 $200 $300 $500 $750 $1,500 $2,500 $5,000

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Typical Sales Funnel

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Give Time, Talent, and Treasure

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Share Your Tools

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Leaders Share Knowledge

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“No one have ever become poor from giving.” -- Maya Angelou

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Gluttony is an over-consumption of anything to the point of waste. Gluttons consume too much, too fast, too soon, too wildly, and too expensively. On Mount Purgatory, it rains garbage and the gluttons eat what they can find. Only one of them notices Dante and Virgil.

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Millions Line Up for the Latest iPhone

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140 Million Trashed Yearly

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5 Phones Per Second

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Enough to Power for Two Years 2016 2017

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Are You Reducing?

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Are You Reusing?

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Are You Recycling?

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Are You Restoring?

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Are Your Designs Accessible?

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“Nothing is a waste of time, if you use the experience wisely.” -- Auguste Rodin

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Lust is an intense desire for fame, sex, money, or power. It is an unnatural craving we use to justify bad choices. In Dante’s Purgatory, lustful souls twist and swirl in a tornado to symbolize their own lack of self-control.

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How does a design leader handle temptations and distractions?

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People Lust for Fame

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We Reject Speakers Yearly

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Insipid Egotistical Greedy Hateful Spiteful Snob

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“Silence cannot be misquoted.”

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“The currency is in the conversations.”

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Create Boundaries

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Speaker Voting System

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Code of Conduct Policy

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Green Room Policy

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Blacklisted a Few Folks

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Kicked Out a Few Folks

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Speaker Orientation

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Speaker Studio to Critique

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Slides to Help You Prepare

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Insipid Egotistical Greedy Hateful Spiteful Intellectual Snob

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“When you are going to lead, keep leading.”

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How to Lead at Work

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Rule #1 “You don’t have to be a manager to be a leader.”

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Rule #2 “Leaders are readers.”

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Rule #3 “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.”

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Rule #4 “Follow the ABCs: Always Be Communicating.”

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Rule #5 “Leaders are learners.”

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Rule #6 “Don’t mistake silence for acceptance.”

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Rule #7 “Leaders are listeners.”

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Rule #8 “Preparation determines success.”

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Rule #9 “Leaders build other leaders.”

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Rule #10 “When you are going through Hell, keep going.”

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