My user manual – how to get the best out of me

User manuals normally are technical documents designed to give assistance to those using a specific system. Personal user manuals are no different. In today’s fast paced environment, being specific and transparent about how you like to work or the best way to give you feedback can really boost forming relationships and helps significantly in setting expectations with your colleagues.

What I’m like

  • My values are Honour, Tenacity and Camaraderie
  • That means I focus on relationships, trust by default and believe in authenticity
  • I’m known for often being the one to ask the question nobody else feel able to ask. This can come across combative, but always has genuine motivation to learn, understand and do better.
  • Actions speak louder than words for me, this translates into having a strong bias for action and I look for this in others
  • I like to utilise a mix of intuition and data, trust in people and their expertise, while being directed by metrics to help learn and determine what’s the next course of action

The best ways to communicate with me

  • Slack or face to face is the quickest way to get a response from me
  • I like to talk shop, but prefer conversations to have purpose and turn to action
  • Talking things through, with a whiteboard really helps me to break things down and ensure we have the same understanding

The times I like to work

  • I work best between 10-4, post coffee and having planned out the day
  • I don’t mind being contacted at any time but I will likely only respond during week day times and evenings
  • My calendar is open so everyone can see my availability. I don’t mind people booking things in my calendar if I am free (just make sure to have an agenda!)

Conditions I like to work in

  • I like to be at the edge of any group, I like the ambient noise but want to have my own space
  • I like listening to music while I work as it helps my concentrate
  • I don’t mind ‘walk-ups’, but it’s best if you need my time to set expectations on how much you need to help me plan my day
  • I believe in taking advantage of your working environment, meaning white boards, windows and everything should be set up to making people more effective

The ways I like to receive feedback

  • I’d rather have difficult conversations than things be unspoken or inauthentic, so just be straight with me – I can take it!
  • I prefer to receive feedback face-to-face
  • I see all feedback as a learning opportunity and really value a learning culture

Things I struggle with 

  • If I don’t understand the wider purpose behind why we are doing something, I find it hard to engage with
  • Unnecessary process – I love agile and design-lead process because it is a great way of being transparent and creates a brilliant learning culture, however, it’s not always necessary. Pragmatism and bias for action is key
  • I struggle with the status quo, if there’s no challenge I get bored easily

Other things to know about me

  • I resonate a lot with the Amazon leadership principles
  • I believe in accountability and ownership, with a learning culture not blame culture
  • I drink a lot of coffee, black with one sugar!
  • I’m naturally quite introverted, but work hard to balance those traits – this can be exhausting so I need to time to recharge