A User Manual For Me

Inspired by Cassie Robinson’s article, here’s a manual for working with me.

Conditions I like to work in

  • I like a quiet area with minimal interruptions.
  • Flow is important to me. If required, I’ll schedule my own flow time so I can get stuck in to my work.
  • I like to have my own desk space with enough room for my 15” laptop and a 27” monitor side-by-side.
  • I’m a bit claustrophobic. Having space is important to me.

The times/hours I like to work

  • I like to have flexible hours if the project allows. Important appointments and staying in touch with friends in Australia often requires mid-morning calls.
  • I like to get started no later than 10:00 AM. This starting time can vary, depending on the situation. When working from home, this can be as early as 8:00 AM.
  • I like to take a break somewhere between midday and 2:00 PM.

The best ways to communicate with me

  • When I’m not in flow, I’m happy for you to interrupt me.
  • I like to collaborate asynchronously (e.g. via a series of thoughtful Slack messages) or at a scheduled time.
  • Slack is the best way to get my attention. I might not see and respond to your message immediately, but I will see it and respond when my flow allows.
  • I’m not great at keeping track of emails—messages can easily get lost there.
  • If you need to contact me urgently, a phone call would be the best way to get my attention.

The ways I like to receive feedback

  • I love receiving feedback! Even when it’s not good.
  • I appreciate honest, direct feedback.
  • I prefer to have difficult conversations face-to-face.

Things I need

  • I’m a very social person. Spending time with my colleagues in a non-work environment is important to me.
  • I need to understand the wider context of the work I’m doing. I like to be included in discussions and decisions about product development if possible.

Things I struggle with

  • I get meeting fatigue pretty easily. If a meeting runs for more than an hour, my attention will wane.

Things I love

  • Hearing feedback from users of the things I build.
  • Being social with my colleagues.

Other things to know about me

  • I’m a bit anxious and claustrophobic.
  • I can be a bit particular about coffee, beer, and music.