How to work with Martin

How to work with Martin

This document’s purpose is to make working together as easy and transparent as possible.

1. Personality

  • ENTJ-A in Myers Briggs. The “E” as in Extraverted seems a bit off at times, especially after a lot of interactions and touch points with a great sum of people. I truly am my best self when I have balance between managing and time for myself in flow.
  • Type A. I am able to perform and handle stress more effectively and block out emotional distractions better than resting Type T. The downside is that I might seem cold or unapproachable.

💪🏽 My Strengths

As a Person

  • Top 5 Gallup Strengths:
  • 1. Futuristic, 2. Strategic, 3. Significance, 4. Communication, 5. Focus

As a Designer

  • Systems Second and third-order implications. I love connecting the dots through design to align individuals, teams, and ultimately drive impact through systems design.
  • Quality Outcomes I enjoy solving problems, big and small, glamorous and not. I love going deep (in sprints), as I enjoy going broad and connecting the dots of all the moving parts. I get joy from flow and when we push for excellence of doing all areas of design well (good product strategy, good interactions, good content, and good visuals).
  • Processes Establishing standards and processes that create a predictable level of quality outcomes. For me process keeps us grounded. Design Process allows us to switch context from exploring possibilities to pitting them all against each other. That way, the best idea will always be in the mix, and, they will always rise above the rest. Often I do trade-off speed (less process) for risk.

📛 My Blind Spots

  • I am working on being more approachable and clear to individuals and teams that my job is to help them achieve and succeed – not to judge or critique solely.
  • I’m also trying to balance my time more between “management” and “individual contributor” work (time-boxing more efficiently).

2. Values & Culture

🥽 Psychological safety We are all wired differently, and so we bring our own various talents to the table and how we approach problems and ship solutions as designers, engineers, and product managers. I take a lot of pride in creating trust levels among individuals and teams. I want people to be themselves and lean into their strengths with confidence, so they can speak up and show up as their best self.

🏃‍♂️Follow-through I take ownership, setting goals, and deadlines very seriously. I want to know if they are still happening early and often. If we prioritize, plan, and set goals we should stick to them. It’s okay if deadlines slip or priorities change, but acknowledging the delay or change is important to me.

📈 High-Quality Outcomes This is part of my strengths (significance); I like to know that my work is meaningful and makes a dent, rather than it amounting to nothing. I can’t stand busy work and will always prioritize quality over quantity. I really admire people and products that strive for excellence. I sweat the details, and you should too.

🪖 Leadership I feel most comfortable collaborating, to move individuals and teams forward. Being completely hands-off (laissez-faire) or always in control (authoritarian) isn’t something that comes naturally.

Leadership Behaviour: it’s a spectrum unique to each situation, team or individual
Leadership Behaviour: it’s a spectrum unique to each situation, team or individual

3. Collaboration

🌀 Quirks I get up very early, the morning for me are sacred and it’s where I’m at my best. Please don’t schedule any meetings before 9:30 unless absolutely necessary.

✍️ Responsiveness I am also trying to be mindful of context switching and how I spend my time. Write me a thoughtfully formatted message and you’ll get a better more thorough response than random chat messages. The more context you give me the better I can help.

🤝 Trust Gains The best way to gain my trust is by being transparent about what you think is going well or not well.

Showing extreme ownership of your work and completely go out of your way to solve a problem with all the resources at your disposal. Understanding the problem in full, pull the right people early and often (in design crits or feature reviews) to push things over the finish line.

Ultimately, you should understand your job as a designer is not just to push pixels, but to help your company build the right products. It’s your responsibility to find solutions, not just problems.

🔪 Trust Killers Don’t over commit and under deliver. The easiest way to lose my trust is if you don’t do your job, don’t ask for help, and as a result don’t meet people’s, customers, or the company’s expectations.

My trust is lost with those who have a sense of entitlement. If you frequently act like a victim and complain about the same problems often, without working on a solution or expect others to solve your problems, my trust in you erodes.

4. How I communicate

💬 1:1s I like to keep 1:1s as much as possible. I use a structured format for the 1:1 because I believe they should be run in a competent manner. We can however decide to tweak or disregard it if needed.

📮 Channels I check my email less frequent. Slack me and give me a heads up about some thing you want feedback on, a decision I should make, or something I need to be aware of.

📢 Over-communicate Add me to anywhere (chats, documents, meetings, emails, etc.) you think I can add value. I’d rather decline a meeting, then be bothered about not being aware of a meeting happening.

5. Feedback & Recognition

💝 Giving Recognition I am not very good at this. I rarely give recognition. I have a high bar, however when I do give recognition its real and genuine.

🎁 Giving Feedback I don’t have any trouble giving critical feedback for individuals to grow. For casual feedback I’ll drop it into Slack or give it to you in person. For critical feedback I will tend to wait until 1:1s to deliver that feedback in a more thoughtful way so nothing gets lost in translation and we have time to also talk through it.

👏🏽 Receiving Recognition I like recognition and am super happy to receive praise. Especially as a leader The feedback loop changes from days to months to see and feel the impact. If you genuinely think I’m doing a good job let me know, I’ll strive to do more of it for you and the team.

📥 Receiving Feedback I like receiving casual feedback via chat or in person, preferably in a timely fashion so the context is still fresh.

I like receiving critical feedback in written form first, (because it makes you think as you write → more valuable feedback as a result), followed by an in-person talk to dive into the feedback in more detail.