I created this guide to help people who work for me to better understand what they might expect. It's meant to be short(ish), and is admittedly dorky, but I am hopeful that it will help us work together most effectively. If you have one (or want to make one), I look forward to reading it!
What I value
- Transparency. I am honest to a fault, and expect the same of others. I am open about my strengths and weaknesses, and I am always receptive to feedback on how I can be more effective.
- Kindness. I believe in being kind to others and receiving kindness in return. This means giving people the benefit of the doubt, but being fully honest when I believe things need to be improved.
- Autonomy. I believe in hiring/managing talented people who can make good decisions, and giving them the freedom to make those decisions alongside their teams. My job as a manager is to think of the long-term vision and the health of the team; I lean on my team to help us figure out the way to get there.
- Learning. I get particularly excited learning about new methods, tools or templates. I also read a lot, and will often share the things I've learned with people because I'm excited about them. If you learn something from a conference or article that you're excited to try with your teams, bring it to my attention, and we'll talk it through.
- Balance. I value my personal and family time, and keep it sacred. I believe that having good work/life balance makes us more effective employees, and encourage you to find a balance that works for you, provided that the work is getting done.
Things that throw me off my game:
- Typos. I have a laser eye for them, and I tend to point them out as soon as I notice them.
- Being interrupted in the middle of a sentence. Particularly when presenting, I tend to get into a very focused mode when I'm talking through something. Being interrupted while I'm still speaking throws off that focus, and I lose my equilibrium. One of my strategies for working through this is to leave regular openings in a presentation to take questions, and setting expectations at the beginning to hold questions.
- Being caught off guard. I deal with change extremely well when I'm given a chance to understand and prepare for it. If you foresee any significant changes coming down the pike, let me know as soon as possible so I can help support you, and so I don't get surprised at the last minute.
- Arrogance and trash-talking. We work with exceptionally smart and thoughtful people. While some frustration is bound to happen between colleagues, and I often joke about how amazing I am, our work depends on the ability to collaborate effectively with others. I get frustrated when people act like they know better than everyone else, or spend excessive amounts of time complaining about others.
Some notes on my work style
These are things that I've observed about how I operate, which can sometimes be misinterpreted by colleagues. Don't take this as a statement of my expectations for you, but it's helpful to keep in mind as we interact.
- I love talking through problems and whiteboarding/sketching together. This might mean I end up pinging you on Teams or popping by to ask a question; if you're in the middle of something and can't talk, please let me know and I'll schedule some time if I need it.
- I tend to think aloud as I'm working through something, and may tap others to think through a problem together. If you notice me rambling or pontificating randomly, it's often for this reason.
- I tend to be direct, opinionated, and often snarky. This may come across as being judgy, and if it bothers you, please tell me privately. It is never my intention to demean or condescend.
- I like to talk about non-work stuff periodically, particularly during the mornings when I first get in, or at the beginning of meetings. If this isn't your thing, or if you're in the middle of something when I stop by, let me know and I won't take it personally.
- I tend to block off 11:30-1pm daily for lunch and some form of exercise; this helps me stay grounded for All the Things. As such, I'll tend to only sacrifice that time for really important meetings with leadership.
- I geek out about a lot of things, and may enthuse dramatically (with hand gestures!).