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Climate, mindset and mastery | Tom Prior


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Content + Design. It's a winning combination when it works. So how can we help these collaborations run smoothly and get the best from each other? In this talk Tom will share his experience as a designer working closely with content, discussing strategies for effective collaboration from the perspective of both disciplines.

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Climate, mindset and mastery | Tom Prior

  1. 1. The collaborative creator Climate, mindset, and mastery. Tom Prior / Curio Conference 2019 / 29.11.19 Image credit:
  2. 2. Value & impact Environment & mindset Content & design
  3. 3. Content Design+ Image credit:
  4. 4. RSA Digital • Simplifying legalese • Removing the burden of understanding • Power of shared tools
  5. 5. Virgin Holidays • Our strategic crossover • Brand voice and UX • Presenting together
  6. 6. • Pair research • A lean content approach • Content in context
  7. 7. Writers do more than ‘put words on a page’. Designers do more than ‘make things look pretty’. Great digital experiences rely on the bond between language and design. “ ”Amy Leak Writer and Designer: A content-first love story
  8. 8. The benefits More effective at delivering value More employable More enjoyable to work with
  9. 9. Collaboration and communication are under-valued and under-cultivated in many organisations. We call them ‘soft skills’, which underplays how important — and how difficult — they are. “ ”Lauren Pope Art and copy: bridging the gap between design and content
  10. 10. Content Design Image credits: Photos by John Westrock and  Denys Nevozhai on Unsplash
  11. 11. Content Design Marketing CRO SEO Engineering CX Product Biz dev Image credits: Photos by John Westrock and  Denys Nevozhai on Unsplash
  12. 12. Becoming collaborative
  13. 13. Think of a time.. Image credit:
  14. 14. Environment Mindset Image credits: Photos by Dylan Nolte and  Alex Holyoake on Unsplash
  15. 15. Psychological safety Image credit: Photo by Vinicius Henrique on Unsplash
  16. 16. The foundation of high-performing teams
  17. 17. Psychological safety is a belief that one will not be punished or humiliated for speaking up with ideas, questions, concerns or mistakes. “ ” Amy Edmondson Harvard Business School Professor
  18. 18. Simply put, it's an interpersonal environment where people believe their voice is welcome. “ ” Amy Edmondson Harvard Business School Professor
  19. 19. Amy Edmondson’s Psychological Safety Be curiousWe are working to learn Acknowledge your fallibility
  20. 20. Measure • Are mistakes held against us? • Is it easy to raise difficult issues and problems? • Are people rejected from participation because they have an alternative viewpoint? • It is safe to take a risk on this team? • It is difficult to ask other members of this team for help? Image credit: Photo by Patricia Serna on Unsplash
  21. 21. Lead by example.
  22. 22. Model behaviour • Seek out alternative viewpoints • Advocate other disciplines • Ask questions, especially naive ones • Listen actively for answers • Invite feedback on your work and approach • Be candid, and constructive
  23. 23.
  24. 24. The art of critique
  25. 25.
  26. 26. Dogma
  27. 27. Dogmatism is counterproductive and dangerous, but it can provide temporary, artificial certainty and illusory comfort in unpredictable times. “ ”Don Ambrose Ph.D Professor of graduate education at Rider University
  28. 28. Value & impact Environment & mindset Content & design
  29. 29. Demystify our job titles
  30. 30. Run a premortem Image credit: Photo by Elena Koycheva on Unsplash
  31. 31. Research together Image credit: Photo by Nicolas Weldingh on Unsplash
  32. 32. Deliverables for direction Image credit: Photo by Stock Photography on Unsplash
  33. 33. Page tables
  34. 34. Priority guides
  35. 35. Share your tools
  36. 36.
  37. 37. Share your tools.
  38. 38. Present together Image credit: Photo by Daniil Kuželev on Unsplash
  39. 39. Space for deep work Image credit: Photo by Mark Asthoff on Unsplash
  40. 40. Practice. Patience. Image credit: Photo by Justine de Gennes on Unsplash
  41. 41. Thank you Special thanks to Rachel McConnell, Peter Winchester, Lorraine Heller, and Claire Fellows for their help in putting together this talk. Image credit: