Jacks of All Trades or Masters of One?

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Our slides from our SXSWi 2010 presentation

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  • Thanks. Most of the time in University they keep talking about how important is to specialize in an specific area. However, as one of your quotes said, specialization to an exaggerate degree does not allow to see some vital connections in projects.

    Thanks for this amazing presentation.
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Jacks of All Trades or Masters of One?

  1. BRIAN “LE ROUGE” TALBOT · M. JACKSON “THE RED” WILKINSON JACKS MASTERS of ONE? of all TRADES AUSTIN CONVENTION CENTER Under the Auspices of SOUTH BY SOUTHWEST
  2. TALBS Sr. UX Designer, Viget Labs
  3. JACKSON Sr. Product Designer, LinkedIn
  4. HASHTAG! (NOT POT RELATED) #jacksofalltrades
  5. DEFINING THE TERMS GENERALISTS & SPECIALISTS
  6. TECHNOLOGY SPECIALIST GENERALIST BUSINESS DESIGN Hat tip to
  7. G Generalist WEB DESIGNER G (with markup chops) S Specialist S WEB DESIGNER (visual only)
  8. G Generalist USER EXPERIENCE GUY G S Specialist USER RESEARCHER S
  9. S G Generalist G FRONT-END ENGINEER S Specialist DATABASE PERFORMANCE ENGINEER
  10. THE SET UP The Great DEBATE
  11. LAYING OUT THE ARGUMENTS “Honestly, I’m shocked that in 2010 I’m still coming across ‘web designers’ who can’t code their own designs. No excuse.” Elliot Jay Stocks
  12. SKILLS DEPTH
  13. G
  14. S
  15. [DAVINCI] G
  16. S
  17. G
  18. S S S
  19. LAYING OUT THE ARGUMENTS A little taste of the prevailing POINT & COUNTERPOINT
  20. SPECIALISTS ARE THE PERFECT TOOL FOR THE SPECIFIC JOB http://www.flickr.com/photos/walker_ep/3789085333/
  21. A GENERALIST TAKES CARE OF WHATEVER IS NEEDED http://www.flickr.com/photos/indigotimbre/66258903
  22. A GENERALIST TAKES CARE OF WHATEVER IS NEEDED http://www.flickr.com/photos/frandallfarmer/255322431/
  23. A SPECIALIST CAN KEEP UP ON CURRENT TRENDS & TECHNIQUES
  24. GENERALISTS CAN ENSURE THAT EXECUTION MATCHES INTENTION
  25. A SPECIALIST’S THINKING ISN’T LIMITED BY EXTERNAL CONSTRAINTS
  26. A GENERALIST CAN SEE THE BIG PICTURE IN A PROJECT
  27. LAYING OUT THE ARGUMENTS “High degrees of specialization may be rendering us unable to see the connections between the things we design and their consequences that ripple out into the biosphere and technosphere in ways we aren’t trained to see or may never fully understand.” Terry Irwin
  28. SPECIALISTS CAN TAKE ADVANTAGE OF SPECIFIC MARKET OPPORTUNITIES
  29. GENERALISTS CAN EASILY PIVOT IN THEIR CAREERS
  30. Making choices in YOUR CAREER
  31. IN MY CAREER DO YOU FEEL THE NEED TO BE THE ABSOLUTE BEST AT SOMETHING? YES S NO G
  32. IN MY CAREER DO YOU LIKE HANDLING THINGS FROM START TO FINISH? YES G NO S
  33. IN MY CAREER DO YOU LIKE WORKING ALONE ON PROJECTS? YES G NO S
  34. IN MY CAREER CAN YOU LEARN AND UNDERSTAND FOREIGN CONCEPTS QUICKLY? YES G NO S
  35. IN MY CAREER ARE YOU COMPETITIVE & A PERFECTIONIST? YES S NO G
  36. IN MY CAREER DO YOU WANT TO WORK ON THE NEW, HIP, SEXY PROJECTS? YES G NO S
  37. IN MY CAREER DO YOU NEED MUCH VARIETY IN YOUR CAREER? YES G NO S
  38. IN MY CAREER ARE YOU GOOD AT KNOWING WHEN YOU’RE IN OVER YOUR HEAD? YES G NO S
  39. IN MY CAREER IS JOB SECURITY A PRIORITY FOR YOU? YES G NO S
  40. Making choices for YOUR TEAM
  41. FOR MY TEAM ARE YOU SMALL? YES G NO S
  42. FOR MY TEAM DO YOU HAVE A DECENT PROCESS IN PLACE? YES S NO G
  43. FOR MY TEAM IS THAT PROCESS MORE AGILE THAN WATERFALL? YES G NO S
  44. FOR MY TEAM IS AMAZING EXECUTION YOUR TOP PRIORITY? YES S NO G
  45. FOR MY TEAM CAN YOU KEEP A SPECIALIST BUSY FOR THE LENGTH OF THE JOB? YES S NO G
  46. FOR MY TEAM DO YOU NEED SOMEONE WHO CAN PITCH IN IN VARIOUS WAYS? YES G NO S
  47. FOR MY TEAM ARE YOU HIRING A MANAGER, EXEC, OR VERY SENIOR ROLE? YES G NO S
  48. Now... QUESTIONS?
  49. Feedback on SpeakerRate please! http://spkr8.com/t/2516 Follow us on Twitter: @whafro & @talbs

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