Photo: View from Algolia’s office, where the Hexagon event was held.
Becoming a mentor
The Paris chapter of Hexagon UX kicked off its mentoring program with a matching event. I’m excited to participate as one of the 15 mentors, some of whom I know already, and grow together with our mentee cohort.
Here’s a question I’ve been asking people: What is the difference between mentoring, coaching and consulting? A friend who’s a trained coach had a clear definition, and I’m looking to add meat to it. Having worked as a consultant for almost a decade, it’s very easy for me to slip into a problem-solving consultant posture… even when I go into a conversation with a different intention. This is a habit I’m really keen to unlearn. I want to be able to switch modes between the three and stay there.
The minimum commitment is a 30min coffee every other week for three months. That’s a decent chunk of calendar time but what kind of “impact” can there be with someone who would a) essentially be a total stranger in the beginning b) took a completely different journey in starting UX design? Well, a friend reminded me that a new perspective can be unlocked with just one well-articulated sentence that lands at the right time. Wise words!
Fifth DRT event in the books
Episode 5 of Design Research Tokyo was held on the same day – obviously, I wasn’t there in person but there’s plenty of support work to be done after the concept-ing which doesn’t require physical presence, such as coordinating with the speakers, preparing introductory slides, managing social media, etc. It’s pretty cool to follow tweets about an event you helped organize… I find the act of choosing the menu and gathering the ingredients to be satisfactory enough, without being there to see anyone “eat the meal”.
It’s time to wind down what’s been an amazing first season, and take a break before opening the second season.
Published something that’s not a weeknote!
I spent most of last weekend writing up this article, and thanks to great editing support from Chris, managed to publish it. Whoo! A lot of people said good things about it and some folks extended the conversation, which is really cool.
Thanks to the regular weeknoting, I’ve realized that I often have weeks, sometimes back to back, with multiple events. It’s a lot, isn’t it…? It was hidden in plain view because typically I’d engage with one event as an attendee and another as speaker or organizer. So they weren’t being mentally tallied in the same bucket as they should be, because my “being around people” battery needs a full charge outside of these events.
I should look into what May looks like, from this perspective. It’s been a good couple of weeks, though. And the weather has suddenly become sunny, and the whole city’s come alive.
One of my highlights of this week was participating in a workshop by Alanna Irving, masterfully facilitated by Nenad Maljković.
A group of 20+ of us from all around the globe explored Full Circle
Leadership through a series of reflective activities and discussions.
Full Circle Leadership is based on Alanna’s model of the eight facets of leadership — a versatile thinking tool for assessing individual or team skills. It can also used to identify gaps in project life-cycles.
expanding our definition of leadership, we can see that most if not all
people have leadership qualities which carry importance in different
contexts — it’s not just about the select few ‘at the top’ with the big
vision and big voice.
This multi-faceted understanding establishes and protects the space for
all kinds of individuals to thrive, and therefore has the power to make
our organizations and societies more resilient and sustainable.
down a big topic like leadership into more clearly defined elements
also helps us understand that one person simply cannot be good at all of
them. Our tendencies also shift depending on those of whom we work
with, which is good reason to use this model as a diagnostic tool for
understanding of operational leadership and its (often undervalued)
role in setting a strategy in motion has been greatly enriched in the
past six months, while I investigated and defined the field of ResearchOps with a community of UX researchers.
This kind of aha!
connection of dots is really exciting — I look forward to examining
other activities through the lens of the Full Circle Leadership model,
while further developing my own style and strengths.
coming off of facilitating an intense three-day workshop, it was such a
pleasure (and relief!) to be facilitated and be able to focus on my own
I’ll stop at one theme in this #weeknote instead of my usual three, as it got quite lengthy.