Josh Silverman

Josh Silverman

Designer & entrepreneur at Startnership

Design leadership with heart, mind, and optimism. Org design, consulting, workshops, education, advising. Former Twitter DesignOps, Schwadesign.

6 action items

Build new team relationships

    • Ask: “What’s your story?”

      Most people enjoy talking about themselves. This will be great practice to be an active listener; you can ask to hear more on the topics that intrigue you!

Give helpful design feedback

    • Make it actionable, not personal.

      Divorce your ego & preferences from the work, and focus on the user’s needs.

Tell your family you’re dropping out of school

    • Be honest, and start with why it’s not resonating with you any longer. Give concrete examples. Talk about what your non-school goals are. If they challenge you, reframe the situation in the positive. Talk about longer-term career goals. Above all, trust your own instincts and be true to yourself.

    • Make a list of positives and negatives before you talk with your family

      Write down what works and doesn’t work for you in school. Have the list handy when you talk with them.

    • Start by talking with the most empathic person

      I will go out on a limb to say it’s your Mom or Grandma.

    • Hold your ground

      It could be a heated conversation, so be prepared to stand strong.

Know when a design is complete

    • It’s never complete – only the project is.

      Design is truly never done; there’ll always be something new to learn, a new typeface, prototyping tool, or piece of actionable customer feedback. The project that includes your design _will_, at some point, be complete, or deprioritized.