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Keynote - How To Be A Great Co-Worker40:47 with Jenn Lukas
Jenn Lukas is here to get you fired up for the final day of the conference with her inspirational keynote on how to be the best colleague you can be.
[MUSIC] 0:00 Thank you. 0:15 [APPLAUSE] Thank you. 0:16 And that pretty much nails it, setting expectations, as long as we aim to not be 0:19 a jerk, I think that we're well on our way to being a great co-worker. 0:22 So hi everyone, I am Jenn Lucas. 0:27 And I said, I'm a front end freelance consultant based in 0:29 Philadelphia Pennsylvania. 0:32 So, that means that before I leave here, 0:34 I'm going to go place a $10 bet on the Eagles to win the 2016 Super Bowl. 0:35 That got a laugh, right? 0:39 [LAUGH] Any who, sports jokes aside, I want to talk to you all, 0:41 today about sort of, 20 things we can do to be better co-workers. 0:46 Some of the things might be things you're already doing, 0:51 some might be things that you think there's no way I will do that. 0:54 Some of them might be things that you might think that are just silly. 0:56 So what I'm trying to say is, there might be some things that we might not agree on. 1:00 >> [LAUGH] >> But what's really important to 1:06 know is that they are all totally possible things that we can be doing. 1:11 So Number one, let's get serious, I'm very serious. 1:15 [LAUGH] We always want to be professional. 1:21 I'm sorry, hold on just one second. 1:27 Man, tea was not cutting it. 1:43 I'm sorry, I just, you know, I hadn't really had a chance to get my morning 1:53 coffee this morning, so I just thought now would be a good time to do it. 1:56 >> [LAUGH] >> How does it make you feel, 2:00 when I leave you waiting, as I go to walk offstage and get myself a cup of coffee? 2:07 Probably not great, right? 2:14 As you're sitting there waiting for me to say something and I just leave. 2:16 How about if I'm like, oh, I'm sorry, I was late. 2:20 There was traffic, or I have to take a call, I was locked in my house, 2:22 I thought you said 9:30 not 9:00 so technically I'm early. 2:28 My kid was sick, in my case, my cat was sick. 2:36 Have any of you ever been in a meeting, waited for someone, but 2:42 instead of them being on time, they've said something like this? 2:46 How many of you have ever said something like this? 2:51 How many of you have ever said something like this more than ten times? 2:52 So really, the most number one important rule, always be on time. 2:59 When I left the stage for one minute, it might seem like no big deal in my head. 3:05 But when you talk about that I'm leaving for one minute and 3:09 there's 150 people waiting for me, all of a sudden that's 150 minutes. 3:12 That's two and a half hours of lost time. 3:15 If you're five minutes late to a meeting that 10 people are waiting for, that's 50 3:17 minutes, that we've lost to things that people could have been doing better. 3:21 If you do the thing where you're like, start without me, and then you 3:24 come in 10 minutes late, and they're like, oh, let's catch Jen up, right? 3:27 Then all of a sudden you've duplicated that lost time again. 3:30 And of course, it's not a black and white issue. 3:34 This is a complicated subject, but 3:37 we sort of have to think about how these excuses sound to other people. 3:40 If I tell you that I have to get a cup of coffee, I'm putting my needs before yours. 3:43 If you tell me you have to take a call, you're being like, oh, 3:48 you can wait for me. 3:50 If I tell you that there was traffic, maybe I should have 3:52 left 15 minutes earlier to make sure that I wouldn't have hit it. 3:55 But again, it gets tricky if your kid is sick, your cat is sick, 3:58 right, life happens. 4:02 Sometimes more life than we want to happens and crazy things can occur, right? 4:09 And that's okay, there's always going to be things that we can't plan for. 4:13 So, really, rule number one is be on time most of the time, right? 4:17 Because things are going to happen, but 4:24 as long as you're on time most of the time, then your coworkers will trust you. 4:25 It's showing a sign of professionalism, right? 4:30 If you're not chronically late person, 4:33 people won't think you're taking advantage of them. 4:34 When life does happen, they'll totally understand when you're late for a meeting. 4:36 Your co-workers will trust you and 4:41 trust is such an important part of being able to work well together. 4:43 And one of the things that we have to do for that- 4:47 Is to embrace transparency, right? 4:53 if you're going to be late to a meeting, email before the meeting starts, 4:58 not after the meeting starts. 5:02 If you can feel your morning starting to go awry, go ahead and 5:04 send an email right away and say I'm going to be late for this meeting. 5:07 Don't just hope for the best, then if you show up, great, but 5:10 at least people are expecting this. 5:13 One other thing to keep in mind, though, is even though I'm staying in embrace 5:16 transparency, we don't wanna be overly transparent. 5:19 Lots of times, your co-workers probably don't need to know your personal business 5:22 or your reasons for being late. 5:25 Here's an email, hey guys, because the schools are closed, 5:28 Shaq's daycare is closed. 5:31 The kid was not really named Shaq but 5:32 I just like to put that in my fictional emails. 5:34 Judy and I are splitting the day so I'll be in or around before lunchtime. 5:36 I'll be responding to or 5:39 creating as many bugs as I can while Shaq watches some game shows. 5:40 Don't hesitate to call or IM or email, I have my laptop in front of me all morning 5:44 unless I'm changing a diaper of course. 5:48 Now, I don't need to know all of this, what I need to know is this, right? 5:51 We can cut these things out and be more sort of prepared and 5:59 professional with the people around us. 6:02 But I'm not saying short is necessarily better either, right? 6:04 Here's an email I once got. 6:06 [LAUGH] I'm like, 6:10 cool glad to know your paint was more important to you than our meeting. 6:14 Right, you have to think about how these sound, just say, hey I'm going to be late. 6:17 Totally don't need to know about that, you chose paint over me. 6:19 [LAUGH] Tough life, it's not just that you have to be completely stark of personality 6:23 either, right? 6:28 There's times and palaces to put it in, but but it's sort of choosing that and 6:29 not over doing it and under doing it. 6:32 We have to find a balance. 6:35 And when it comes to finding a balance, that means sort of, 6:37 we have to write genuinely to each other. 6:39 And we have to balance that casual and 6:44 professionalism in our types of communication. 6:45 So, here's an example of feedback on a pull request that happened. 6:49 And in general it's pretty much blunt and to the point, so, do not decline your own 6:54 pull request that you're going to update, we lose all the updates you've made. 6:57 Just update any changes and re-commit it to the branch. 7:00 That way we won't lose all the feedback we have. 7:02 Now a coworker sent this to me and she was going to send it to someone else. 7:04 And she said, how does this sound, because the person she was sending this to was new 7:07 and she was sort of a little bit worried. 7:11 Is this to harsh? 7:12 And so, I pointed out a few things. 7:14 One of the things we can do when we're communicating genuinely is, 7:16 beware of the do not. 7:20 Using contractions will make things sound a little more casual, so if you say, 7:21 don't decline as opposed to, do not decline, it sort of just eases things in. 7:24 Another thing to watch out for is the use of the word just. 7:29 Just, essentially implies that it's oh, just do it, you know, no problem, 7:33 just add that in. 7:37 Just code this website, no big deal, right? 7:38 So, you're sort of implying that it doesn't take a lot of effort, 7:41 by using the word just. 7:43 So, little impacts can really change the way that we talk to each other. 7:45 So, instead of something like that, how about one of the great things about 7:48 version control is keeping track of our changes, 7:51 with that in mind, please don't decline this pull request. 7:53 Instead, update the change, recommit the same branch. 7:55 That way we won't lose the feedback provided. 7:58 Adding the word please, explaining why you're asking this, 7:59 in a more casual way is a nicer way to communicate with each other. 8:02 When it comes to introducing yourself and starting off your working relationship 8:09 with someone, we don't want to be presumptuous. 8:12 We don't wanna use things like nicknames in our letters. 8:15 So this was when I used to work at Happy Cog, I helped with hiring and 8:18 this is one of the emails we got. 8:22 Hey Coggers, and you're like, oh, nice to meet you too. 8:24 I hear you're looking for a stand-up, front-end guy in Austin. 8:27 I'm that guy. 8:31 I breathe code (ask my poor wife) and have recently been looking for 8:32 a proper home with cool projects that keep me hungry. 8:34 Avoid wife jokes in your emails, would also be a really good rule to follow. 8:38 We don't wanna assume anything when you're introducing yourself to other people. 8:42 Especially this is the way that I'm gonna start off my 8:45 working relationship with you. 8:47 Hello, I live in Salt Lake City and I'm wanting to relocate my family to Austin. 8:51 Do you have any positions available for my skill set? 8:56 Any feedback would be great. 8:58 It took all of my effort to not write back, feedback is one word, to this person 9:01 for the feedback, but most importantly, we have to do the leg work, right? 9:05 When we're starting off our relationships with people, 9:09 the thing is, you are joining a team. 9:11 And so, you want to make sure that you're putting your best foot forward and 9:13 starting with a lot of effort, instead of making assumptions and 9:15 asking others to do the leg work for you. 9:18 It's a group effort, for sure, but, 9:20 make sure that you're starting off your first impressions correctly. 9:22 And, I'm not saying that this is easy, right? 9:24 Writing emails like this is really hard work. 9:29 But the thing is, remember, we can tell that you're faking it. 9:33 We can tell that you're really, you're not even trying, man. 9:38 You're just, you're just, a little effort. 9:41 Just try to fake it, a little bit. 9:46 Remember, this is how we're starting our relationship. 9:48 So speaking of impressions, we've got to dress for the job. 9:51 And this is something that we sort of don't talk about, 9:55 fashion might be something that we can often forget. 9:57 But we have to remember that these are things that make an impact of how people 9:59 are viewing us, and how we present ourselves to others. 10:03 So do some research on what a company is like before you interview there. 10:06 Then once you start working you can adjust your dress accordingly to who 10:10 the people are that you work with. 10:12 Cuz these are things that people consider. 10:14 I used to ask before client meetings if I should cover my tattoos, and 10:16 some people use to say to me, oh, you shouldn't have to worry, be yourself. 10:19 If anyone has a problem with it, it's like [SOUND]. 10:23 Pretty woman all up in here. 10:27 And [LAUGH] I'm like, I totally agree on my time, but the thing is, 10:29 it's not just me. 10:33 I'm representing a team, I'm representing a company. 10:34 I would never walk in here with a three-piece blazer suit with 10:38 shoulder pads and be yes, you're all my people, right? 10:41 It's about sort of fitting the environment. 10:45 I wouldn't walk into a kick off with Martha Stewart with a take me to your 10:46 dealer t-shirt, right [LAUGH]? 10:50 >> [LAUGH] >> Maybe, maybe I would. 10:52 But [LAUGH] just for the comical story effect, but no I wouldn't, right? 10:55 So these are some things we have to consider what we're doing. 10:59 When it also comes [LAUGH] to fashion and dress, always pack a backup outfit. 11:03 I cannot tell you how many client meetings I've sat in [LAUGH] where right before it 11:08 one of my coworkers dropped a donut on their shirt [LAUGH], right? 11:11 Or at the very least a stain stick. 11:14 I know someone who takes their shirt off before they brush their teeth in 11:16 the morning if they're going to a conference, so they don't do that thing. 11:19 Why does toothpaste always drop [LAUGH] like right in the middle? 11:22 Just me? 11:25 Awkward [LAUGH]. 11:26 I once had a thing where I do the thing, 11:28 I hate ironing cuz ironing is like the worst. 11:31 And so I like do the thing where you hang your outfit in the shower and 11:34 your like, the steam will do it [LAUGH]. 11:36 This will be fine, and so I hung it up there, 11:38 it was like really early in the morning. 11:41 I wasn't really paying attention. 11:43 I turned the water on [LAUGH] not realizing that the shower head 11:45 was pointed right at the wall [LAUGH]. 11:48 Right on the out fit [LAUGH]. 11:50 And I was like oh. 11:51 Which, [LAUGH] was awful, but luckily, I had a backup outfit, 11:53 because I'm also really [LAUGH] clutzy and drop things on myself a lot. 11:56 But if you would know these things about yourself, you can sort of be prepared for 12:00 these scenarios [LAUGH] by having a backup plan. 12:03 So, besides dressing for the job, we also need to speak for our jobs. 12:08 How many of you have HR at your jobs? 12:15 A few. 12:19 A bunch, but not everyone, right? 12:20 The thing that's a little bit interesting about the tech field is, since we have so 12:22 many different working scenarios, a lot of us don't have dedicated HR. 12:25 And what that means is sort of a lot a bit about, 12:28 sort of taking on the job of HR for yourselves. 12:31 And making sure that we're sort of making a comfortable environment for everyone. 12:35 And a lot of that is how we talk. 12:38 How many of you have ever felt uncomfortable by 12:40 something a coworker has said? 12:44 It happens, right? 12:47 I mean and we're not perfect so these things are gonna happen and 12:48 not just in the tech field, in any field. 12:51 But it's something we have to think about. 12:54 Not everyone is comfortable with cussing. 12:56 This is something that happens all the time, but it goes beyond that to. 12:58 There are little subtle language choices that we can make to make our environment 13:04 more comfortable for people. 13:09 For me, I would like us all [LAUGH] to stop calling women, girls, right? 13:10 There's a lot of girls in tech, a lot of these things. 13:15 And it gets tough, you know? 13:17 If you sort of equate things with language choices, 13:20 talking about boys versus men, these are the things we sort of have to think about. 13:22 About how these language choices can make the people around you feel. 13:26 Along with that and alienating, 13:30 we really [LAUGH] need to stop calling interfaces sexy. 13:32 I was talking to my friend Sarah about this, venting about this, and she's like I 13:35 know, I was having this conversation one time where someone suggested that anytime 13:40 you wanna call an interface sexy, replace it with the word erotic and 13:44 then see if you would still call it that, right? 13:47 And it sorta works this way in any scenario. 13:50 Definitely it helps more in writing when we have a little more time to think about 13:53 things, but replace the word you're about to say from something from thesaurus and 13:57 see if you would still use it. 14:01 So right, would I still describe an interface as any of these words? 14:03 And so when we think about these things, they're small little things that using 14:10 the language can make people feel alienated in the workplace. 14:13 So I like this trick a lot because it reminds me of replacing it, 14:17 like, would I do this? 14:20 And now I like, live on Thesaurus.com, and I also [LAUGH] learn a few weird words. 14:21 Along with that, when we're talking about teamwork, never I, always we. 14:26 So not, I coded this and it turned out great, we coded this and 14:32 we wanted to make sure that we tackled these things with it. 14:36 It always makes it sound more of a team player role, which is good for 14:39 you and your team. 14:42 We want to keep personal calls to a minimum at the workplace. 14:48 And this can be really hard sometimes right? 14:52 Because things happen. 14:55 Those pesky doctors don't take emails, you gotta call [LAUGH]. 14:56 And you know this is like on a nine to five schedule for a lot of us, so 15:00 we have to sort of find these things to do. 15:03 But the truth is, 15:05 a lot of time your coworkers don't wanna hear about the divorces that 15:05 you're having, or that weird thing on your arm, or 15:08 any of those sort of things that are going on. 15:11 So what we need to do is, 15:13 go ahead and step outside the office to take these kinds of phone calls. 15:14 But that's not to say that people don't wanna get to know each other, right? 15:18 But, what we wanna do is, keep personal business out of the office, and 15:23 grab coffee with your co-workers. 15:26 Find a more appropriate place to have the time to really get to know people 15:28 one on one. 15:32 I asked a lot of people about what their favorite thing about a coworker is, and 15:32 a lot of people said I love to grab coffee and get to know them. 15:36 And so it's actually dedicating that time to do that, versus like 15:40 weird little things like oh, I overheard you on the phone making that appointment. 15:43 How's that filling working out for you? 15:47 You know these genuine actual interactions with people are gonna be worth a lot more 15:49 than sort of over hearing people's conversations in the office. 15:53 Do not talk smack about other people. 16:02 This is super important. 16:05 I went on a lunch meeting the other day, someone had asked me to grab lunch. 16:07 This was sorta like the coffee scenario. 16:11 And I was like, oh yeah, sure I don't know this person very well. 16:12 Let's go ahead, let's do this. 16:15 So I went and got lunch. 16:17 And part of the lunch I had mentioned that I worked on a side project with someone. 16:18 I mentioned the person's name and we go to lunch. 16:21 And the first thing this person says to me when we sit down, 16:25 he goes oh I remembered where I know Joe from. 16:28 He actually used to work with us. 16:31 He was terrible, we fired him. 16:32 And I was like, oh. 16:35 So, in the story, who's sort of the bad person here? 16:38 The person who got fired? 16:45 Or the person who is telling the story about the person who got fired? 16:46 Right? 16:50 We sort of have to think about how these things sound to other people. 16:51 And what it really comes down to, is we wanna work with nice people, right? 16:54 No one wants to work with a jerk. 17:00 It's [INAUDIBLE], maybe someone does. 17:02 To each their own. 17:03 But generally, most of us do not wanna work with jerks. 17:04 Now, of course, that's tough, right? 17:10 We're gonna say the wrong things sometimes. 17:13 I'm not expecting everyone in this room to be perfect. 17:15 I'm not perfect. 17:17 Stuff is gonna come out that we don't mean to say. 17:17 Sometimes we'll tell a story. 17:20 Sometimes we'll use a word. 17:21 These things will happen, but 17:22 what's really important, is that we own up to this. 17:24 Then when you've realized that perhaps you've said or wrote or 17:29 did something wrong, you apologize for it genuinely. 17:31 These things can happen all the time. 17:34 I've had, especially when you think about things like Twitter, where people, 17:35 it's really [LAUGH] easy to share your thoughts on the internet [LAUGH], right? 17:39 And sometimes a little too easy. 17:42 Like they even make those apps to stop you from doing things if you've been drinking, 17:44 like we know this is a problem, right? 17:48 So these things can totally happen. 17:50 I've had someone that had said something to me on Twitter, and it was like, oh, 17:52 that was weird, and they instantly deleted it and apologized for it genuinely. 17:55 I can totally respect that, that these things happen, 17:59 as long as we are genuine with our apologies. 18:02 Now, that said, if you do have a problem with someone, we need to make sure that 18:07 we're trying to resolve those conflicts, especially in the work place. 18:11 And this can be really tough. 18:14 But, we wanna make sure that we're finding good ways to actually tell the people that 18:16 we work with about the things that are going on that make it a difficult working 18:19 relationship. 18:22 And when I ask some people, what's the worst thing a coworker can do? 18:25 I got some of these responses. 18:27 Ideally we wanna try to resolve conflicts with our coworkers face to face, 18:32 person to person, as long as there's nothing an extreme, uncomfortable scenario 18:35 going on in which, of course, if you feel unsafe you should see someone else. 18:39 But in this case, if it's something like my coworker chews really loudly or 18:43 plays their music too, maybe the chew really loudly thing would be weird. 18:47 But if they're playing their music too loud in their headphones, or they're 18:50 vaping at their desk, some of these scenarios, you wanna be able to say, hey! 18:53 Would you mind vaping outside? 18:58 And it's, of course, slightly awkward, but if you work with this and do it directly 19:00 to that person, versus going around them, they will totally respect you more for 19:04 that and then you'll continue to have a good working relationship versus awkward, 19:08 medium person in the middle trying to handle these things for you. 19:12 And it's quite possible that your coworkers are doing things that 19:16 are offensive or hard for you without them knowing. 19:19 And so again this is important, why we sort of try to address the scenario that's 19:22 happening and with them in a respectful way. 19:26 This another great place where coffee comes in, where you just sit down and 19:28 be like, hey, let's just talk about this. 19:31 With some people you'll realize prefer maybe an email but 19:33 it sorta depends on the scenario and how you feel about it. 19:35 Another thing that will make your coworkers very happy, 19:43 is if you always meet your deadlines, right? 19:46 One of the things that I insist [LAUGH] on doing is, if you have to, under commit and 19:49 over deliver. 19:53 It's one of the best things we can do. 19:54 And it will always help with hitting your deadlines and 19:56 making sure that we're not disappointing or setting ourselves up for failure. 19:58 You wanna be someone that people can count on and sometimes. 20:01 Often that means, that we have to know when to ask for help. 20:07 This is really important. 20:11 If there's a deadline approaching and you're feeling tough about making this, 20:13 we gotta let people know. 20:17 Because if you let people know, we can plan for it accordingly, 20:18 whereas all of a sudden, we get too far and we're too close to that deadline, 20:21 all of a sudden we can't retrofit time or help in to fix that scenario. 20:25 Now, some of us work elbow to elbow with people but we're still scared or 20:29 uncomfortable, or just don't want to ask for help and 20:34 this could be for a couple of different reasons. 20:37 Oops, still there [LAUGH]. 20:43 Still ask for help, everybody. 20:43 This could be for a couple of different reasons. 20:45 Whether or not it's, we're worried about being perfectionists. 20:47 Or maybe, we're worried about bothering people. 20:50 Or maybe, because there's so much information out there on the Internet, 20:52 we think we can find it ourselves. 20:56 But something is preventing us from asking for 20:58 help, and certainly we should be seeing what is out there, right? 21:00 We wanna avoid that whole let me Google that for you syndrome, right? 21:05 But we don't want to be scared to ask for help, we have to meet these deadlines, so 21:10 we have to feel comfortable working with each other and learning from each other. 21:15 Something that I really like to do that's really helped me with this is what 21:19 I call the 15 minute rule. 21:23 So if I can't figure something out after 15 minutes, then I ask for help. 21:25 So if it's a coding thing, maybe I'm jumping over to StackOverflow and 21:30 I'm seeing if anything's there. 21:33 Maybe I'm trying a few different things. 21:35 If it's a writing thing, maybe I'm over on thesaurus trying to write things, 21:37 trying to figure out grammar issues. 21:40 But in general, after 15 minutes, 21:42 if I'm still stuck, then I'll be like, okay it's time for me to ask for help. 21:44 So, something like numbers around this really helps me and 21:48 it shows self initiative while also respecting your coworkers time. 21:51 Where as if you just go up to someone, you'll be like, oh I can't figure out this 21:55 CSS property, and they'd be like, well did you see this, no I didn't try that. 21:59 Or if your going too long for two hours and someone's like, 22:03 why didn't you ask for help? 22:06 I could have pointed you out to where you could go. 22:07 And it's like, oh, I didn't think about asking for help [COUGH]. 22:08 We always want to look to improve. 22:17 If you want to challenge yourself and move up, 22:20 you have to take the initiative to self teach And 22:22 what it comes down to, in becoming a better coworker, 22:28 is sort of asking ourself, is this our job or this our careers? 22:31 Many of us are in this field [COUGH], pardon me, 22:38 because it's something that we love, right? 22:41 A lot of us, 22:45 not many of us are just [INAUDIBLE] like I don't know seems like something to do. 22:46 A lot of us love this, right? 22:49 How many of you love what you do? 22:51 Right? I mean, it's awesome, totally awesome and 22:54 so a lot of that is remembering this can be our career and not just our job. 22:56 And we have to remind ourselves that what we do is really cool and 23:00 push ourselves to be even better at it. 23:03 Part of that is embracing feedback. 23:07 And feedback sucks [LAUGH], right? 23:10 [LAUGH] No one's, like, you know what I wanna do today? 23:13 Get told what I'm doing wrong, right? 23:16 It's tough, but the thing is, it will make you a better person. 23:19 And when it comes from your coworkers, who you trust, and work well with you, 23:21 it's only gonna help you to improve, to learn to embrace feedback. 23:25 The other thing we can do is, 23:31 if we wanna get even better at our jobs, is learn through personal projects. 23:32 So, putting in the extra effort outside of work hours is a great way to get better at 23:36 what we do. 23:40 Tackling a website from start to finish will expose us to a lot of different 23:41 aspects of the website building, or web app building, environment, and 23:45 sort of help us expand our horizons. 23:49 So we can get a deeper understanding of the sort of challenges facing our 23:51 coworkers and clients. 23:55 And I'm sure that many of you have a crazy [LAUGH], who's gone home and 23:56 just registered a URL, going this is going to be a really good idea one day, right? 24:00 Yeah [LAUGH]. 24:05 So make that URL, make that website. 24:06 Working on personal projects is a great way to do this, 24:09 one time I was like, you know what I'm gonna do? 24:12 I think it'd be really funny if we made a cooking show where we just cooked recipes 24:14 from [LAUGH] the sides of boxes. 24:18 >> [LAUGH] >> [LAUGH] They're not very good recipes. 24:20 One's like Aunt Jemima, and it's for a taco casserole bake [LAUGH]. 24:24 Man, there is weird stuff on boxes. 24:29 But, what was great about doing this project, 24:31 is it gave me a chance to do a side project that let me do things like, 24:33 concepting, scriptwriting, editing, UX, design, development, project management. 24:37 Getting a chance to do some project management was a great thing that 24:44 often people can forget about, right? 24:46 Learning to manage your schedules, both as your own client and within a team is 24:48 really important, and can really help us sort of work better together. 24:52 So, it's nice to do these personal projects because they give you a chance to 24:57 experience these things. 25:01 And while that's one way to go we can also sort of expand or 25:02 horizons with collaboration. 25:05 We all know that it's really hard to stay up to date with everything, right? 25:10 There's a whole bunch of new stuff coming out all the time. 25:13 But when we work together, we can easily get more exposed to things that maybe we 25:16 wouldn't have the time to be aware of ourselves in our own time. 25:20 So, it's always tough, right? 25:24 To be the jack of all trades or master of none thing or master of only a couple. 25:25 But it is really important that we be well rounded and 25:35 knowledgeable outside of our specialty. 25:38 Designers in the room, let me ask you a question. 25:42 How many of you have ever viewed a comp and it looks great, and 25:45 then you pass it off and you see it in the browser and 25:48 all of a sudden your grid's all messed up and the fonts are all different, right? 25:51 And you go to the developer, hey did you see this? 25:55 And they go [SOUND]. 25:58 >> [LAUGH] >> Developers in the room [LAUGH]. 26:00 How many of you have ever received a comp and 26:07 you're like woah, this could only be done with like CSS 23 spec? 26:10 There's no way that this could happen and 26:14 you express your concern, and the designer says [SOUND]. 26:18 >> [LAUGH] >> Project managers [LAUGH]. 26:22 How many of you have ever tried to compose project timelines only to be told by your 26:28 team, oh there's no way we can do it in that time? 26:33 And the clients are like, that's way too long, right? 26:35 Exchanges like this are why it's so 26:41 important to be on the same page as your team. 26:43 >> [LAUGH] 26:49 >> Feels like that some days, right? 27:02 [LAUGH] But if we respect each other, 27:04 then we work better together and we create a better product. 27:08 But we can't do that right, 27:15 if we don't know what it's like to walk in each other's shoes. 27:16 >> [LAUGH] >> Sometimes 27:19 that can be really uncomfortable [LAUGH], right? 27:25 But we have to get better at our jobs, and so we gain respect for 27:28 each other by understanding what the people around you do. 27:32 It might seem silly or easy but then once you actually get into that role, 27:36 you're like oh that's tough. 27:40 You gotta talk to the client every day, or you gotta code this, or 27:42 you gotta design like this at 10,000 different retina sizes? 27:45 That's tough, but we become more well-rounded when we 27:50 learn more about this, and we can do this by sharing. 27:54 Sharing with each other will make ourselves better and 27:58 our coworkers around us better. 28:01 And when we share with people what we do, it doesn't just make the people around us 28:03 better, it makes us better by solidifying our knowledge on a subject. 28:08 So does anyone here have the rubber duck programming thing? 28:12 Where like, when you're trying to figure out a problem you talk to like a rubber 28:16 duck or an inanimate object? 28:20 Not that you should talk to your coworkers like they're inanimate objects [LAUGH]. 28:21 But what you should do is be able to explain to them and [INAUDIBLE] new find, 28:24 you explain some, and if [INAUDIBLE] comes over and 28:27 says, hey how do you make this work and you explain to them. 28:29 All of sudden, you became stronger and more knowledgeable and 28:32 solidify your knowledge on the subject. 28:34 So it works well for all of us. 28:37 So how can we do this? 28:42 One of things I love are Lunch & Learns. 28:43 Organize a weekly, bi-weekly, a monthly lunch and learn with you and your team. 28:45 And every time that you have a lunch and learn, a different person can present and 28:50 don't put a time limit on it. 28:53 Set an hour for the team to be together and have lunch but 28:55 make sure everyone knows the presentations can be 10 minutes, 15 minutes, 25, 28:57 30, because once you start to giving people time limits to fill, 29:01 they get a little nervous and are more hesitant to sign up for this. 29:04 But if you just say hey, talk for 15 minutes. 29:07 And the rest will be time for us to just hang out, and talk about it, and 29:09 eat lunch together. 29:12 It sort of eases in people to be able to sign up for this. 29:13 And the topics can be about anything, Gantt charts, 29:18 infographics, how to use Git, how to setup a grid in Photoshop. 29:21 Any sort of subjects at all, that will basically expose the rest of your team 29:26 to other things and what your doing on those. 29:29 But, how do you get people to go, right? 29:33 This is always a problem, you try to share, and you're like, oh, it's cool, 29:35 like, everyone will come to this, and then you set a meeting, and no one comes. 29:39 Does that, does that happen? 29:42 That's a bummer, right? 29:43 So what do we do? 29:45 How do we solve this? 29:46 This is how we solve 29:46 it [LAUGH], my friends. 29:52 [LAUGH] [COUGH] It may seem silly But seriously, offering food for 29:59 lunch meetings will make people come to the meetings [LAUGH], right? 30:03 Cuz you're sort of showing, it's not just a matter of a free lunch. 30:08 It's saying, I want you all to feel welcome and invited, and we're gonna put 30:11 out money to provide this lunch for you to come and we can enjoy this together. 30:15 So it's sort of the significance of it too. 30:18 Plus it's pizza, and pizza's awesome, so. 30:20 People will come to this if you're there. 30:25 The other thing that you can about sharings, 30:26 you can attend local meet-ups with your team. 30:28 See what's out there, 30:30 maybe you want to volunteer with your team to do a panel of something nearby. 30:32 But go together and sort of learn together about different things. 30:36 A lot of the times this can be during the day or on the evenings, so 30:40 maybe on the evenings you wanna make it optional. 30:42 But again, if we wanna get better and really make this a career, 30:45 we'll have no problems spending sometimes going to these meet-ups and learning more. 30:47 Something else I really like, 30:53 is volunteering as a team to local tech groups. 30:54 So either by teaching or volunteering to be a TA, going together with your group 30:57 and doing things, like volunteering, can really help build this, and 31:01 there's a lot of great tech nonprofits to volunteer for. 31:05 Also, it's great to attend conferences or meetups with your team, so 31:12 Lanyrd's a great place to look for this. 31:15 As a team we also want to document things together. 31:20 So, one of the ways that we can learn is by working on documentation. 31:22 Things like timelines or budgets or coding standards or style guides, 31:27 pattern libraries, these are all things that by documenting together as a team, 31:31 we're all working and collaborating to understand them and create them together. 31:35 So you sort of have a team building process, 31:40 where you're also creating this thing that everyone can use to make your work better. 31:42 Another thing we can do, is try something totally different than computers, right? 31:50 I try to take different classes every once in a while, so I've taken a jewelry class, 31:57 a woodworking class, a sewing class. 32:00 I've taken a sewing class like three times [LAUGH] and it's not sticking with me. 32:03 I took a bowl turning class. 32:07 And what I really like about taking new classes, right, 32:09 is it sort of reminds me how cool [LAUGH] what I do on a daily basis is, right? 32:12 It's does a few things. 32:17 One, when I'm like really frustrated [LAUGH] and 32:18 I'm like wood turning's the worst. 32:20 I'm like can't wait to go back to my computer, right? 32:22 So I come back to work rejuvenated and happy, and 32:24 again everyone like to be around people that are happy to be doing what they do. 32:26 But the other thing about learning new things, 32:31 is when we learn new things it helps us build patience. 32:35 And patience is such an important thing to have, 32:39 especially in the workplace, you know? 32:41 It reminds us that you don't always know the ins and outs of everything. 32:44 If you've been working in what you do for a very long time sometimes, again, 32:48 we forget that it's second nature to us, right? 32:51 But if someone comes up and they're like how do you do that? 32:52 You're [SOUND] come on. 32:55 Where you're like oh, yes I remember what it was like to not know what this is and 32:56 you sort of are able to work better together to explain people. 33:00 And remember that it's cool that they're asking how things are being built or 33:03 how things are being designed. 33:09 Patience can help us work better together, and 33:11 it can help us remember the preferences people have when they are working. 33:14 We all do not work the same, right? 33:19 When I asked people, what's the best thing a coworker can do, 33:21 I got a variety of different answers, one of them was this. 33:25 This is something I can relate to. 33:33 Another one was this. 33:34 And then on the opposite end of the spectrum. 33:41 We got one that was more, like less stay on your side, 33:46 but please come over to my side of the wall right? 33:49 Very different things. 33:53 Very different criteria for being a good coworker. 33:54 And often animosity at work can come from being sort of different personality types. 33:59 Has anyone heard of this? 34:05 The asker, guesser culture? 34:06 So, the idea here in a ask culture, askers basically have the expectation that it's 34:09 okay to ask for anything but they're also okay with receiving no as an answer. 34:14 Whereas, guessers basically, they avoid putting a request 34:19 out until they're pretty sure that the answer is going to be a yes. 34:23 So an example of this is, your friend emails you. 34:26 And they say, hey, I'm gonna be in town for business for two weeks. 34:29 Can I stay at your house? 34:32 Askers will think, no problem asking, cuz If I didn't ask, 34:36 how would I ever know, and I'm totally okay with getting a no. 34:39 Whereas guessers would find out something a request like that to be completely rude 34:42 and maybe instead they would send an email like, hey, I'm gonna be in town for 34:45 two weeks, any suggestions on areas to stay? 34:48 Perhaps hinting, oh maybe you'll be like, oh you can stay at my house. 34:52 Now it's an interesting thing because many guessers 34:56 can find askers impolite by being so direct. 34:59 And many askers can find guessers impolite by being so passive aggressive. 35:02 So it's a weird thing, depending on who you are, 35:07 how you sort of deal with interactions with the other side of this, right? 35:10 When you think about your coworkers as askers or guessers though, 35:17 it really sort of makes it more easy to empathize with them. 35:20 So say your boss emails you and is like, hey, 35:23 can you work on this email I need coded this evening? 35:26 You might take that, if you're a guesser, you're gonna be like, I have to do this, 35:30 this is something I have to say. 35:34 But if your boss is an asker, he might be expecting you to say, hey no, 35:36 I already have plans. 35:39 I'm having dinner with my family and being okay with that. 35:41 So if we start looking at people like that, 35:44 we can sort of start understanding how we like to work together and 35:46 how we're actually requesting things from each other. 35:49 And sort of understand that maybe it's not a personal attack on us. 35:52 Its just how people like to handle things differently and 35:55 communicate with each other differently. 35:57 The other thing we can do to sort of help with that is establish team norms. 36:02 So, sit down with your team and 36:07 one of the things that you can do is get post-it notes or send an e-mail, and 36:08 everyone write down on a piece of paper what makes for a good working environment. 36:11 So, you get a bunch of these. 36:15 You write them down. 36:17 It could be things like, I want to only check emails at 1 PM and 5 PM. 36:18 Or rules like, if you see I have my headphones on, please don't interrupt me. 36:24 Or, from the hours of three to four, anyone can talk to anyone during this. 36:29 It could be things like, we have to have 25-minute meetings, so maybe the meetings 36:33 need to end at the 55 and 25, to make sure that you can get to your next meeting. 36:37 These can be absolutely anything. 36:42 It could be we always wanna have pizza Fridays. 36:44 It can be from the hours of 2 to 2:30, we all have to listen to Madonna. 36:47 It could be absolutely anything of the things that you think you and 36:53 your team will help you make a better productive and more cohesive team. 36:56 Then what you do is, you review those. 37:01 You talk about them and you say, what does everyone agree on? 37:03 What works well for people, what do we wanna establish? 37:06 And then you establish these team norms. 37:08 And you come back and you revisit them every once in a while, 37:11 to see how they're working, or if things have changed. 37:13 And by establishing these down, you start to get a feel again for 37:16 how people like to work, and how they work best. 37:19 Some people, 37:22 on Monday mornings, don't want to check email until the end of the day. 37:22 Some people want to check it right away. 37:25 But if the two people are doing opposite things, that's where animosity starts to 37:27 step in and you can't work well together because the person wants to meet about it 37:30 right away and the other person wants to meet about it in the afternoon. 37:33 But if you establish this, then it helps make that seamless, and 37:36 everyone sort of has the same expectations of each other. 37:39 Number 19. 37:45 >> [LAUGH] >> That's an important one [LAUGH]. 37:54 Oh I used to work at this office where someone [LAUGH] used to cook frozen fish 37:59 sticks in the toaster oven [LAUGH]. 38:04 Oh it was the worse. 38:07 And the thing that made is worse is, there were two kitchens and 38:08 instead of toasting the fish sticks in the kitchen near his desk, 38:12 he would come to the toaster [LAUGH] on the other end cuz he new. 38:16 He new what a terrible thing it was. 38:19 When I ask people about the worst thing you can do, 38:21 I think about 25 different people said cook fish at the office. 38:23 But honestly, just think about, again, 38:28 respecting this thing, that this is a space. 38:29 This is a workspace you spend a lot of your time in. 38:31 So, again, 38:33 remember to treat it as some place [LAUGH] that you wanna be 40 hours a week. 38:34 And last, we have to say thank you. 38:39 We have to tell people that we appreciate working with them. 38:44 The craziest thing about this is the studies they've shown about this. 38:49 People who show gratitude in the work place increase their productivity and 38:53 happiness by as much as 31%. 38:56 This is such an easy way to be happier and better at our jobs. 39:00 Yet despite this, 39:06 in a study they found that less than 15% of us express thanks in the workplace. 39:08 We have to stop looking for all the wrong things and 39:15 really start celebrating all the right things that we're doing together. 39:18 Take a minute right now. 39:23 And I want you to think about when you go back to work or 39:25 something that happened at work last week that made you really happy. 39:28 What's something that one of you coworkers did that was just super awesome? 39:32 Think about that for like 30 seconds. 39:36 Now, when you get back to work next week, tell them. 39:59 Whether you tell them by bringing them a cookie or buying them a coffee or 40:03 emailing them or writing them a thank you card. 40:07 Go back and tell them, and say, 40:09 hey I just wanted you to know that it was awesome that you reviewed my polar request 40:10 or it was great that you stayed late to help me with this. 40:13 Or, hey, that timeline you made, awesome. 40:15 Tell them, because telling them will remind us how great it 40:17 is to work with these people, to be in this field that we love, and 40:21 how awesome it is to be in this job and that we're all in it together. 40:26 So sincerely, thank you for being here with me this morning. 40:30 >> [APPLAUSE] 40:33 [MUSIC] 40:37
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