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Knowledge isn’t the problem, communication is

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Slides from my talk at WordCamp Cape Town 2014, here's the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pbi1DwJ6CqM

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Knowledge isn’t the problem, communication is

  1. 1. Knowledge isn’t the problem, communication is WordCamp Cape Town 2014
  2. 2. $ whoami • Tomaž Zaman (@TomazZaman) • Father of 4 • (almost) a husband • skydiver • geek • founder of Codeable (@codeablehq)
  3. 3. -me, on numerous occasions “I f*cked up.”
  4. 4. Tom • 9 - 5 • sucky job • sucky project manager • sucky clients
  5. 5. A web developer. Web is global. You should be too.
  6. 6. • Over-promised • Under-delivered • Late • Why? Too many clients at a time.
  7. 7. Fear of running out of work.
  8. 8. Solution? Decrease prices, offer discounts. does it work? No.
  9. 9. No motivation.
  10. 10. “Spiral of guilt”
  11. 11. The fantastic four Missed deadlines Misaligned expectations Poorly executed solutions Personality clashes
  12. 12. 1. Missed deadlines
  13. 13. Ego == small talk 0 benefits
  14. 14. Solution? Admit you have problems, fears, expose your weak sides. Honesty goes a long way.
  15. 15. Supply and demand They meet at the correct price. You’re probably not charging enough.
  16. 16. 2. Misaligned expectations
  17. 17. –Your client “This is not what we agreed on.”
  18. 18. Draw. Improve UX and IA skills by doing it.
  19. 19. 3. Poorly done solutions
  20. 20. You’re probably not this guy
  21. 21. Technical debt It’ll bite you or your successor eventually. And it’ll be expensive.
  22. 22. 4. Personality clashes
  23. 23. Empathy Can’t learn it.
  24. 24. Acceptance Practice it. Then practice some more.
  25. 25. Learn to let go.
  26. 26. What about teams? Easy. It’s called SCRUM.
  27. 27. • Kanban 2.0 • 14 day sprints • User stories • Daily meetings (not exceeding 15 minutes) • Roles • You can do this alone too! • http://zaman.io/1-person-scrum/
  28. 28. Recap • Increase your prices, don’t compete on those. Compete on your skills instead. • Ego kills relationships • Empathy and acceptance go a long way. • Clearly define the scope of work. Draw, if you have to • Have a partner, or an employee. Preferably several. • When things go wrong, don’t accuse or point fingers, strive for a solution and learn from it! • Learn to let go! • SCRUM/AGILE/whatever • Even if you love what you do, it’s just a job. You do it so you can live, not the other way around.
  29. 29. Dankie!

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