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UnTitled: Design Leadership for Those Who Aren't in Charge

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Does a fancy title make a good leader? Does being more seasoned qualify a good leader? Does popularity or persuasive chatter predict a good leader? Everyone working has a boss — you’ve had some good ones and less good ones (and maybe even terrible ones). Sometimes we wonder “how did they even get that job?” Or maybe it’s “if only I could have that role, I’d do it differently.” Design leadership means more than titles, time, and personality…and it needs you right where you are. You are strategically placed. You are not misplaced. In the design industry, let’s talk about what it means to lead when you’re not in charge — for people already leading, and those looking to lead.

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UnTitled: Design Leadership for Those Who Aren't in Charge

  1. 1. UnTitled Design Leadership for Those Who Aren’t in Charge Scott Welliver Design Advocate @ Abstract scott@abstract.com
  2. 2. I’m a little nervous.* *design has a leadership crisis. And your business has a design crisis.
  3. 3. CEOs don’t understand
 design leadership.* *according to McKinsey, no one else does either. 19 Feb 2020 - Fast Company - McKinsey study of 1,700 companies reveals CEOs don’t understand design leadership at all https://www.fastcompany.com/90464950/mckinsey-study-of-1700-companies-reveals-ceos-dont-understand-design-leadership-at-all
  4. 4. –Katie Dill, VP Design @ Lyft “I am more than happy to design 
 my own role in the 
 best interest of the company.”
  5. 5. My first time “in charge”. Circa 2006
  6. 6. My first time “in charge”. Circa 2006
  7. 7. –No One Ever “I like to fire people.”
  8. 8. My current template is perfectly designed. *To produce the results I’m currently getting. *
  9. 9. Design your influence &
 Design your product. *using the same/similar principles. *
  10. 10. Hungry Smart Humble
  11. 11. Not Hungry Not Smart Not Humble
  12. 12. Be smart
  13. 13. Leaders are learners. *You don’t get what you want, you get what you prioritize. *
  14. 14. Read these ! If you’re only gonna read one
  15. 15. Not a reader? Try IG @AdamMGrant @JonAcuff @LiveFromSnackTime …also, everyone here has a good podcast…
  16. 16. Isn’t research, like, important? *spoiler alert: it is for design. * So is leadership research.
  17. 17. Get to business. d.MBA - Alen Faljic Second Wave Dive - Ryan Rumsey
  18. 18. Get to business. d.MBA - Alen Faljic Second Wave Dive - Ryan Rumsey
  19. 19. –Kurt Vonnegut “Be understandable.
 Therefore, understood.”
  20. 20. Be hungry
  21. 21. Don’t wait. *if you’re always waiting for more responsibility, 
 you’ll likely never be given anything of importance. *
  22. 22. *but connect with others through your weaknesses. Lead with your
 strengths.*
  23. 23. Volunteer to lead something. *when you aren’t paying your team, you’ll discover how to influence without status. *
  24. 24. –Alastair Simpson @ Atlassian “Where there is chaos, bring calm. Where there is calm, bring passion.”
  25. 25. Be humble
  26. 26. Have integrity. *doing the right thing even when no one is watching. *
  27. 27. Great teams aren’t built 
 on the talents of a few. *they are built on the sacrifices of many. * …also, great products…
  28. 28. Bring judgment. *produce value because of your own wisdom and experience. *
  29. 29. Strong opinions. Loosely held. *great leaders don’t get defensive. *
  30. 30. –Jim Elliot “Where ever you are, be all there.”
  31. 31. Smart charmer
  32. 32. Smart Humble doormat charmer
  33. 33. Hungry Smart Humble doormat bulldozer charmer
  34. 34. Hungry Smart Humble doormat bulldozer charmer lovable
 slacker
  35. 35. Hungry Smart Humble doormat bulldozer charmer lovable
 slacker skillful
 politician
  36. 36. Hungry Smart Humble doormat bulldozer charmer lovable
 slacker accidental
 mess-maker skillful
 politician
  37. 37. Hungry Smart Humble doormat bulldozer charmer ideal
 leader lovable
 slacker accidental
 mess-maker skillful
 politician
  38. 38. UnTitled Design Leadership for Those Who Aren’t in Charge Scott Welliver Design Advocate @ Abstract scott@abstract.com

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