In which Jesse and Peter discuss their relationship to systemic racism, as individuals, as leaders, and as members of the design and UX communities.
In which we are joined by Maria Giudice, founder of Hot Studio, former design executive at Facebook and Autodesk, for a whirlwind discussion of her career, design leadership, and coaching.
Topics: Frank Frazetta; Working Girl; art school; white designer dudes; New York in the mid-80s; Richard Saul Wurman telling us we're all full of shit; designing guidebooks; command-and-control leadership style; San Francisco in the late 80s; becoming a design leader; hiring misfits; match between leader and the team; inheriting teams; the brutality of corporate America; learning from mistakes; change-making at scale; consulting vs in-house; the need for executive sponsorship; where we find joy in our lives; meaning and purpose in our work; leading and coaching in a fashion authentic to you; the value of coaching for senior leaders.
In which we address the how to grow as a design leader when the opportunities thin out, and then take a hard turn and address the culture of marketing and the problems it poses for designers.
Topics: Imbalance of leaders at different levels; don't determine what's interesting for someone else; the pace of career growth; designers who have found their way; discouraging people from desiring to be a leader because doing it right is fucking hard; dual-track leadership models; UX for marketing and product used to be the same; marketing design wants to work more like product design; brand beyond design; service design; marketing, as it's commonly practiced, is bullshit; #notallmarketers; product marketing; data-driven marketing; functions have distinct cultures that cross-functional teams don't address; Jesse's hair.
In which we grapple with the multifarious concept of trust, in light of how important it is for leaders to establish, build, and maintain it in their relationships.
Topics: Leadership coaching, psychological safety, resilience, conditions leading to trust, Michael Jordan's uncompassionate leadership tactics, critique, bestowed authority, Brené Brown, non-judgment, leaders speak last, "being right" behavior, earning trust, maintaining positivity and authenticity in the face of difficulties; integrity; whether organizations can earn trust; trust falls; Amy Edmondson; Google's Project Aristotle; accountability; trust as an emergent property; why all these models and theorists never mention trust; trust within a team; trust between teams; trust as an integument that enables cross-functional teams to collaborate; Drive by Daniel Pink; operationalizing trust is like eating soup with chopsticks or trying to capture a candle flame.
In which we continue to grapple with in-house vs design consultancy distinctions, and see promise in the creation of senior strategic design roles within some companies.
Topics: working in teams; working like a consultancy; Metropolis; the lie of design schools; the reality of in-house design practice; cycles of abuse; working in truly high-performance design contexts; the stage model of cook apprenticeship; the capacity of design programs; rotation programs within and across companies; the emerging role of Principal Designer.
In which an email from a design leader self-labelled "Consultancy Rat" spurs a wide-ranging discussion on strategic design leadership, product management, and the differences between in-house and consultancy design. Topics: consulting vs in-house design; FAANG+; the bifurcation of UX design; product design; design as a handmaiden to engineering; why not both?; product management and product strategy; product management as UX practice from 15 years ago; the craft of product management; making the shift from consultancy to in-house; strategic and principal in-house design roles.
In which we discuss the challenges of relationship management when leading from home, and then start a potentially promising discussion on the subject of trust.
In which we break down the components of a team charter, and the ways it helps design leaders, particularly with people matters of recruiting, hiring, and retention.
In which we look at the purpose behind defining purpose, and discover some unexpectedly useful new frames along the way.
In which reflections on the coronavirus pandemic spark a freeform conversation ranging from Trump to Jobs on management, leadership, power, uncertainty, and more.