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26 minutes | 5 days ago
Goals push us and motivate us to do new learn things, get better at something, or open up new opportunities. But sometimes, goals can be tough to define. In this episode I about SMART Goals and my experience using this framework for creating goals. Regardless of your career path and discipline, have a goal that you can actually work on is more helpful than having a goal that you don't work towards realizing.
27 minutes | 12 days ago
The Unholy Trinity
Good, Fast, and Cheap. Guess what....it doesn't exist. Don't kid yourself into thinking it can. In this episode, I talk about my own experiences with the mentality to work and just how often it's doomed to fail from the start. I go over two worlds of design, advertising and product, and how this mentality sabotages the work, creates a pressurized environment, and always ends up costing you more in the long run. Quality is not measured by the speed or price tag associated, it's measured by how well your work performs. Let's dive into this episode and discuss how to mitigate this kind of work mentality so that you set yourself up for success.
13 minutes | 19 days ago
Remember all of those great ideas that never made it into your product because of a tight deadline? Yea...those ideas. Sometimes they come back to haunt you in the form of negative customer feedback, poor adoption, bad reviews, or enabling competition. Design debt is one of the myriads of issues designers face with creating products. These rushed and forsaken decisions lie in wait with hopes of being implemented to improve the user experience but sadly can lie in Purgatory waiting to be prioritized. This episode talks about how to prioritize your design debt decisions so that you improve your customers' experience and build a pipeline for iteration.
34 minutes | a month ago
When you think about your impact on the world as a designer, what effect do you think you have? Do you think about how your work has helped society? What about the negative consequences of hyper-focused work that removes the human element? I've been thinking about my responsibility and obligations as a designer and I'm glad to report that I am not the only one thinking about this in our field. In this episode, I talk about my maturation of ethics in design and discuss Mule Design's Designers Code of Ethics as a foundation to ensure we do work responsibly and for the greater good.
23 minutes | a month ago
DiSC Personality Types
Understanding your personality and behavioral traits, motivators, and triggers are invaluable in business and life. When you know what drives you, you can then learn what drives others and adjust your interactions to be more effective and meaningful. In this episode, I talk about my experience with DiSC behavior assessment and how it has helped me understand how to mature and be mindful in my interactions with colleagues. In turn, it has helped me grow as a leader and become an effective partner in organizations.
26 minutes | a month ago
Artificial Intelligence and Design
Artificial Intelligence. A phrase that conjures the folly of man, the audacity to make life and become god, and the fears of something that looks down on us as irrelevant. All doom and gloom aside and before our robot overlords take over...we still have a long way to go. In this episode, I explore the idea of using machine learning tools to aid designers, viewing AI more as a tool than a sapient entity. This reality is far more capable and probably is already here; how we decided to use these tools however needs discussion.
33 minutes | 2 months ago
Total Customer Focus
Not many companies have a fan base. To create a fan base, you need to focus on delivering quality experiences each and every time you interact with your audience. At Sheetz, this is what they do every day. In this episode, I delve into the dedication that Sheetz has for their customers and pierce the veil on how they focus on their customer experience through the lens of a design and business professional, showcasing how their relentless drive to exceeding customer expectations is a model for companies to learn and grow from if you want a truly rabid fan base.
21 minutes | 2 months ago
Designers do a lot of things. They are asked to take on certain work and responsibilities, some are expected to, some do it to be helpful, and others do it because either no one else will or can...but what work should designers do or not do? In this episode, I talk about five things designers should do or at least have some base knowledge to be effective designers but not be a jack of all trades. Let's start off 2021 by beating a dead horse! Or at least set some context on why designers should have these base skills.
40 minutes | 2 months ago
Design Systems 101
Design systems: a valuable tool to create consistent experiences for products and services at scale....but not just for large companies or products. In this episode I discuss my experience with design systems and discuss the value they bring to companies creating products and services at any scale.
24 minutes | 3 months ago
Critique is an important part of the design process. To a product or service that is meaningful and valuable, it takes a village to ensure its success. However, most critique assumptions and experiences are fairly poor...both from the giving and recieving end of critique. Recently, this has been something I've been working on with my colleagues and in this episode, I want to share some basic truths about critique and how you can use it effectively in your work...all be setting the right frame of mind and attitude.
48 minutes | 4 months ago
Finding a new job is tough, even without a pandemic raging. You have to make sure your resume and cover letter are current and tailored to the work you are looking for. As someone who has had a lot of jobs, I understand the amount of time needed to apply and follow up with HR and recruiters. In this episode, I talk about some strategies and tactics that I use to help me apply for jobs, whether I am passively looking or actively persuing. The biggest lesson from this episode is to not be passive in your job search, but actively maintain your documents to ensure when the time comes, you are prepared.
30 minutes | 4 months ago
Design Thinking & Bullshitters
Living in Central PA, bullshit wafting through the air around the farms is a sure sign of planting season. Also another sure sign of planting bad ideas is the bullshit surrounding design thinking. This episode is my take on this hot take as I believe that design thinking isn't the thing that stinks...but rather it's the people espousing it and calling it design thinking. We discuss the famous Natasha Jen talk at Adobe 99U and the subsequent articles from FastCompany that discuss differing points of view. My own take is that design thinking is the tool we need to help shape the conversations at the table that we designers have been wanting to be at for while, but we must take care to ensure others don't destroy.
35 minutes | 5 months ago
Getting a Design Job with no Experience
Design is a job...and to get a job you need some experience, but you can't get any meaningful experience without a job, right? It's the classic chicken and the egg story...but does it have to be so cut and dry? Can you get a job in design without a college degree? Can you pull together the knowledge and experience needed to get a job as a designer? Yes, yes you can. It takes a plan to get educated and get experience, but that plan doesn't have involve costly college. You can create a path for learning that fits your needs and investment by creating a realistic timeline and smart investment into your education in design skills and business acument. In this episode I break down a path for self-initiated education for anyone who wants to become a designer (Visua, Front-End, and UX). I talk about the following: Setting a realistic timeline to learn Learning the foundations and strategy, then learning the tools and tactics Practical application by working with clients Taking time to reset expectations and pivoting as needed Creating case studies to show your work While I mention a lot of learning platforms and tools, I don't advocate one over the other...your experience may vary (even with the bootcamps). I am also not sponsored by any of these companies either.
30 minutes | 5 months ago
I have a lot of jobs in my life...but it wasn't until I became a knowledge worker that I interfaced with job recruiters. As a designer, it's been interesting to see the different types of jobs that recruiters are actively hiring for and seeing the mismatch of knowledge and expectations. Conversely, some of my best experiences with a company have started with internal recruiters. So this episode is focused on how recruiters operate from the internal and external perspectives, how the industry is setup, the challenges recruiters face, and wondering about a different approach to recruiting.
31 minutes | 6 months ago
Too often, many people let life happen to them instead of working towards something. Having a vision of what you want your life to be and how you are going to acheive it is key to realizing it and making your goals attainable. This episode discusses having a vision for your life and by having a vision how you can control the levers to your success. I discuss some backstory of mine about being a professional musician and how I had a vision to make that a reality and how shifted into design. This episode hopefully will have you think about what you want to do and identify what steps you need to get there.
52 minutes | 6 months ago
Interview with Courtland Ellis
Courtland Ellis is a man of many talents. Currently, he works at BankMobile, a fintech startup where he works on social media strategy, app design, and email marketing. He's previously worked at Aspire Ventures being a lead designer developing company brand assets, app UI design, and illustration and he got his started at The Fictory and Post-Age where he first interned and later was hired as illustrator and design doing game design, motion graphics, post-production, and concept art. In the last ten years, Courtland has honed his skills to be a succesful concept artist, all sprung from his love of comics and cartoons. He sat down with me to discuss his career path, insights on being a professional creative, and advice to young designers coming up in the field.
24 minutes | 7 months ago
Failure sucks...no one likes to fail. But really, what is failure? Isn't the journey of getting good at something paved with the learning opportunities you go through? Is failure a bad thing? And what truly is failing at something? This episode is all about failure and reframing the conversation. To fail is to learn, to truly fail is to give up and not try. I share a story from early in my career about failure and how changing my mindset has helped me grow in ways I never thought possible at the beginning of my career. My hope is that this episode will help reframe things in your mind and face life, work, your relationships with more positivity.
18 minutes | 7 months ago
Ten months. Not a terribly long time ago, but a lot of things have happened in those ten months. This episode is mainly about the journey so far with the show and some of the new things I'm going to implement for the future. These include: Video content - Signal337 YouTube Channel Guests and Interviews Patreon for ardent fans
53 minutes | 7 months ago
Let's talk about Project Management
Having PMP after your name is more than a fancy credential. Project management might be something you innately do as a designer or business owner and not even realize. In this episode I discuss my interest in becoming a PMI-certified project manager and how project management works for designers and the project managers who work with designer, whether in the marketing side of design or the technology side. We also go into the difference between project manages and product managers as well as discuss some resources to help grow your project management skillset.
49 minutes | 8 months ago
I am trying not to be overly dramatic, but the United State of America isn't united. It's a fractured mess of shit. Over the last month, my growing tension and attitude towards how we conduct ourselves in society has both infuriarating and depressing. In this episode, I focus on Black Lives Matter and creating the society we should all be proud to be a part of. I recap some personal issues that have lead to my hyper-focus on where we are as a nation, and I share a damning lesson of mine that has helped me grow as a person and become more mindful and open to others. This isn't an episode about design or business...so feel free to skip if your prefer...but I couldn't in good conscience not speak up and share my thoughts and beliefs on how our society has failed to live up the values and aspirations we should have in this country. This episode is quite personal and hopefully shows that a world were truth, openness, welcoming, and solidarity is possible.
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