Russ Unger is an Experience Design Director for GE Capital Americas where he leads teams and projects in design and research . He is co-author of the book A Project Guide to UX Design, Designing the Conversation, and Speaker Camp for New Riders (Voices That Matter). Russ is also working on a book on guerrilla design and research methods that is due out well, sometime.
Russ is co-founder of ChicagoCamps, which hosts low-cost, high-value technology events in the Chicago area, and he is also on the Advisory Board for the Department of Web Design and Development at Harrington College of Design. Russ has 2 daughters who both draw better than he does and are currently beginning to surpass his limited abilities in coding.
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You have attended workshops, you have seen them masterfully commanded by other people, and you really want to get a handle on doing this workshop thing yourself. This workshop is the workshop that will help you create and facilitate a workshop of your very own, in whatever workshop fashion you decide upon.
Russ Unger will help you identify the path unlocking the workshop achievement in whatever platform you choose. You will learn how to plan your agenda, structure your workshop, and identify the tools that are needed to help you along the way. Preparation is only a small portion of The Workshop Workshop; you will also gain from the wisdom of the CrankyTalk Workshops to help you feel more comfortable with your material–and yourself–in front of a group of people who are relying upon you to be their guide.
There will be activities where you will experience the true nature of “trial by fire” or “getting your feet wet” (whichever metaphor you prefer). That is correct: You will be leading your very own workshop within The Workshop Workshop, and presenting your findings and results back to the rest of the workshop attendees.
Bring your most comfortable pair of shoes, your favorite writing utensil, and all the gumption you can muster.
I’ve worked for a lot of idiot managers in my career. And then, one day, after I had become a manager, it dawned on me: Now I’m the idiot! You see, most of my career has been an exercise in “trial by fire.” This process worked well when I was a designer and was trying to master the art of the task flow, site map, wireframe, prototype, persona, and so on. In leadership positions, the option to go back to the drawing board or to iterate hasn’t always been readily available—nor as painless to my pride and potentially my pocketbook.
Many of these lessons haven’t been easy for me to learn. It’s been tough to simultaneously remove obstacles without becoming one, or learning how to say “no” (and the flavors of yes and no!) when I’ve also wanted people to be satisfied with me and the work I’m doing. However, these lessons have all helped me become better at managing to some degree, while instilling a strong sense of empathy for those people who either report to me, or bless their souls, manage me in one way or another.
If you’re interested in learning from some of the hard lessons I’ve learned, or in just laughing at my folly, there will be plenty of material to provide you with either opportunity.