@JustSomeDev visuals
Things aren't always what they seem.
Software developers are expected to code from 9 to 5. In reality, then spend 9 to 5 in meetings, and code after hours.
Do you like cleaning up messes? The best leaders see them for what they really are: Opportunities to learn, grow, and build relationships.
You empower yourself when you take responsibility. You disempower yourself when you blame others.
When you're told to "just ship it," but your boss has no concept of a Minimum Viable Product
Two slices of bread on a plate.
When your boss doesn't like wasting time, but wants you in a 3-hour meeting
In a 3-hour long meeting, you're needed for 5 minutes.
When your boss smiles and says, "it doesn't have to be perfect," and then...
A smartphone sounds off at 3am with notifications of a production error of critical severity and a message from Boss to get your ass up and fix it ASAP!
A good mentor will give you a clearer sense of direction
Without a good mentor, it's like looking at a blank multi-directional signpost. With a mentor, it's like one of the signposts is labeled, "try this!"
A good mentor will give you a clearer sense of direction
Having a good mentor is like being given a map of a maze. Without a mentor, you're on your own!
More information isn't always better
Imagine getting more than 50 notifications with random subject lines like, "you won a prize!", "buy one get one sale on now!", "congratulations!", "your account has been compromised", etc.
Is your lunch truly free?
A piece of cheese rests on the trigger of a mouse trap.
A matter of perspective
Eggs in the sun are cooking, cookies in the sun are baking, but a person lying in the sun is sunbathing.
Have you ever worked on a fix for a bug in production caused by you? I have. Did it occur to you that your fix may also contain a bug?
A cursor hovering over the 'merge' button, nervous.
My secret problem solving tool
My idea generator - a shower stall.
Want a happy customer? Underpromise/Overdeliver.
For a promise of 3 ice cream scoops: the customer with one scoop says, 'I expected more,' while the one with 6 scoops says, 'that's more than I expected!'
'Problems grow the size needed for you to acknowledge them' - Luca Dellanna.
A flame keeps growing until it's extinguished by a fire extinguisher.
'Problems grow the size needed for you to acknowledge them' - Luca Dellanna. (Animated GIF)
A flame keeps growing until it's extinguished by a fire extinguisher.
Face your problems. Grow stronger.
A dimmer switch between facing your problems at the top and avoiding your problems at the bottom.
Sensationalism makes news travel further. But think about what it does to your mental health.
Without sensationalism, a small flame and a big flame are just that. With sensationalism, a small flame is a disaster, while a large flame is the end of the world.
It's not how many tools you know. It's if you can use them effectively.
Choose the right tool. There's a hammer, a screwdriver, and a screw.
Each failure is a step towards success, if you learn from it.
Each failure is like a box you can stack to form steps towards an, otherwise, out-of-reach trophy on a pedestal.
Play to your strengths (to succeed).
If you have chocolate and strawberries, make chocolate-covered strawberries. Don't wish for bananas.
When your boss doesn't understand that even simple tasks take time.
The frame of a house is barely up and the boss asks, 'Can you finish the house tomorrow? It's not rocket science.'
Know your tools. Use them wisely. What are they good for? What are they NOT good for?
A screwdriver's good for screws, not so good for nails.
A weakness is often the shadow side of a strength. To know yourself is to recognize both sides of you.
A screwdriver's good for screws, not so good for nails.
If you're the best, you have nothing to gain and everything to lose.
From the top, there's nowhere to go, but down - like a ball on top of a hill.
Attract new customers.
Ice cream repackaged as: a tub, ice cream cone, parfait, popsicle, and ice cream sandwich.
Solving a problem before it's understood means it won't be solved and new problems will emerge.
The best problem solvers spend 95% of their time understanding the problem before solving it.
Learning without feedback is like wandering around in the dark.
Feedback lights the path forward in the dark.
When product requirements keep changing.
When you have a soccer ball, basketball, tennis ball, and baseball mashed into one product, and you're asked, 'can you make it a volleyball?'
Don't let the fear of looking stupid hold you back.
Like a ball and chain with shackles where the ball is the fear of looking stupid.
A free source of motivation.
Celebrate small wins for more frequent motivational boosts.
If the road ahead looks tough; if you're feeling down, just look at how far you've come.
The journey up the mountain looks tough, but remember, you're already two-thirds up the mountain.
Stay humble.
One person is pointing and laughing at another whose balloon popped, not noticing an arrow headed for his own balloon.
Start writing now to organize your thoughts and bring out your best ideas.
Before writing, it's like you have a bunch of puzzle pieces. Writing down your thoughts is like completing the puzzle.
When giving feedback, focus on the creation, not the creator.
Where to focus feedback? On the cake, not the baker.
Want a promotion? 1. Add Value 2. Make Noise
It's like adding value, then emailing your boss showing the value you added in a graph.
Just because you can't find happiness today doesn't mean you never will.
Keep going. You're almost there - along a windy path to happiness.
For those fighting silent battles:
Stay strong. You'll win. A person is punching a punching bag.
People don't realize how much data they're giving advertisers.
Data Privacy vs. Convenience. A virtual assistant says, 'You seem depressed, George. A 6-pack of beer is only $10.99 for a limited time.'
Keep It Simple, Stupid.
More features isn't always better. Like a television remote control with a dozens of buttons.
Keep It Simple, Stupid.
More features isn't always better. Like a television remote control with a dozens of buttons.
What are you NOT being told?
Misdirection. There's a spotlight in the dark on a teddy bear. When the lights turn on, a bloody axe is revealed next to the bear.
Stuck on a problem? Explain it to a rubber duck. And if you don't have one...here ya go:
A rubber duck.
Chasing trends will distract you from what's most important.
Shiny object syndrome is like bouncing around. Focus is like heading straight to your target.
Act NOW on an opportunity.
Opportunities are time-limited, like Pacman chasing blue ghosts.
It's easy to get caught in the details of a problem. Zoom out to get a bigger picture - to solve the problem.
Zoom out to solve the problem. It's like focusing on the broken piece of a vase. Zoom out to see the vase and the bottle of glue next to it.
There are some things you only want to observe from a distance...like drama.
A comet from afar looks fascinating, but if it gets too close...'oh shit!'
You're vulnerable when you're surrounded by people who only agree with you.
A person with a fire extinquisher asks themselves, 'did I do well?' Those around him say, 'yes,' and 'you're awesome' while a fire rages behind them.
A good coach works with strengths, not weaknesses.
Some things just aren't going to happen - like teaching a fish how to fly.
As a leader, you blaze a path for those behind you. To do that, you must face unknowns ahead of you.
To lead is to face the unknown - like a swordsman leading two others in a cave.
When blazing a new path, no one knows what's ahead. As the leader, get used to feeling vulnerable. If you don't feel vulnerable, you might just be a figurehead.
True leaders are vulnerable to what's ahead. They're the first to face the obstacles ahead.
If you're following a worn path, the leaders ahead will have cleared some obstacles for you. A leader doesn't have that luxury.
A swordsman tries to cut through the wall ahead. Leaders don't wait for help. They're not afraid to try.
Maximize a person's potential to achieve the greatest outcome.
A lead swordsman steps aside, letting a demolition specialist lob a bomb at a wall to try and break through. Good leaders play to their team's strengths.
Leaders make mistakes, too. It's unavoidable. The response *after* determines how good the leader is...
Sometimes, leaders make mistakes when instructing others. A team leader instructs a team member to lob a bomb at the wall ahead, only to have the bomb bounce off the wall, back to the team member.
Good leaders own their mistakes by working with those affected to fix the problem.
A team leading swordsman helps heal an injured teammate. Good leaders help those in need.
Sometimes, team members are attacked (with unfair criticisms). Good leaders defend them.
A team leader shields teammates from a bomb. Good leaders defend their teammates.
When a teammate or the team reaches a milestone, good leaders celebrate it with them. Celebrating small wins boosts motivation.
A leader and two teammates celebrate around a trophy. Good leaders celebrate team wins.
Take the blame. Pass the credit.
A leader presents two teammates celebrating with a trophy. Good leaders credit their team members.
Obsessive focus can blind you to better possibilities. Open your mind to the opportunities.
With tunnel vision, you only see the one opportunity. Without it, you see others all around.
Keep the big picture in mind. Obsessive focus blinds you to dangers.
With tunnel vision, you only see your goal. Without it, you have more awareness. You can see canons lined up on both sides of the path towards your goal.
If you're stuck, try helping others.
Help others to help yourself. It's like helping someone else to get on a ledge. Then, they can lift you up from on top of the ledge.
When writing or drawing, remove unnecessary fluff to let your ideas stand out.
On the left, is tall grass with a wooden sign pointed down that says, 'gnome.' The grass hides the gnome. On the right is just a gnome on flat turf.
Lead by example.
Good leaders do less talking, more building. On the left is someone yelling on a podium. On the right is another nailing a piece of wood at a home building site.
Develop inner strength. Stick to your principles.
Principles are like the roots of a flower - they keep the flower anchored to the ground. They don't get carried away by the winds of trends, fads, and gimmicks.
Courage isn't absence of fear, it's control of fear.
Courage plus prudence is like a firefighter dousing a fire from a distance. Courage plus recklessness is like a person running into a fire without protection.
Watch what others do, not what they say.
A trophy sits on a fancy pedestal under a spotlight. A person off screen says, 'I know my prize is meaningless, but...check it out!' Actions speak louder than words.
An echo chamber is more like an insulation layer that grows itself. It's more than a group of people who agree with the one in the middle - they protect the chamber by ousting those who disagree, and filter information that gets in.
The anatomy of an echo chamber: you are surrounded by a bunch of checkmarks enclosed by a dashed circle. A question mark is being forced out of the circle, while a checkmark is entering. The dissent from a red 'X' outside the circle deflects off the circle.
Close friendships survive disagreements.
Disagreements are represented by wind. On the left is a collapsed house representing weak relationships. On the right is a standing house representing strong relationships.
The small details don't matter if the big, important details are wrong.
A glass of water is on the left. A straw, umbrella, and lemon wedge are added and annotated as, 'small details.' Someone off screen to the right says, 'but, I asked for coffee.'.
How fast you're going doesn't matter if you're going the wrong way.
One car is driving to the left towards a checkered flag, while another is speeding to the right off the cliff into the sea. Direction is more important than speed.
Do you own IT? Or does it own YOU?
On the left is a person showing off his trophy in a spotlight on a pedestal saying, 'that one's mine!' On the right is the trophy showing off the person in a spotlight. The trophy is saying, 'that one can't live without me!'
Give a sense of direction when someone's stuck. Walk through the solution with them if they're *really* stuck.
What a leader gives you when you're stuck: the map to the maze. What a leader gives you when you're really stuck: the map to the maze with the solution.
Your enemy may not be who you think it is.
Two people are throwing rocks at each other while a third person stands at a distance holding one rock on each hand next to a sign that reads, '$100 per rock'. Division benefits those beyond the battle.
Start making things. You'll be way ahead of many others.
A bar graph with two bars. The bar for those with ideas is 20 times taller than the bar for those who execute their ideas.
Rushing means more mistakes to fix, which slows you down. Move fast. Don't rush.
A hurdler successfully clearing each hurdle is faster than another who's rushing through, knocking over each hurdle.
Tasks that seem hard often feel easier with experience.
Inexperience feels like slicing a carrot with a spoon. Experience feels like slicing a carrot with a knife.
Think about the unintended consequences of what you're asking for.
A person asks for 'one coconut tree, please.' As they're standing under their new tree, a coconut falls on his head. Be careful what you wish for.
Set yourself up for opportunities to find you.
On the left is a person chasing a fish or opportunity. On the right a person is putting fish feed in the water, and the fish or opportunity approaches.
If you can't see all sides of the argument, you'll never see any side. - Paul Portesi
It's not a side if you can't see any others. It's like looking at a square versus a cube.
Different people. Different perspectives. Just because someone sees something differently doesn't mean one of you is right and the other is wrong.
Which is the front side of a cube?
"Don't flatter yourself. You were never even a player." - Azula
Are you the player? Or are you being played? Are you the chess player or are you the chess piece?
When you focus so much on improving one feature, you neglect a critical dependency.
A person says, 'We perfected the ice cream so each scoop won't slide off the other.' Then, the cone breaks.
If you're late for one opportunity, you may be on-time for another.
A yellow banana is good for a snack. A brown banana is good for baking muffins.
Learn to enjoy what you do.
Everything feels harder when you're not having fun - like pushing a 2000 kilogram block up a ramp.
"Everything in excess is opposed to nature." - Hippocrates
A flower wilts in parched earth roasting in the beaming desert sun.
The success you see is often the result of hard work you don't see.
It's easy to see someone holding up a trophy, but what you don't see are all the steps that led up to it.
Uncover the truth before you buy-in.
What you get may not be what you expect. Like a box of juice with artificial colours, artificial flavours, too much sugar, and no real oranges.
You can only achieve your goal if you're willing to pay its price.
An $8 stool or an $800 ergonomic office chair. Are you willing to pay the price?
A solution in one context can be a problem in another.
Pouring water on a wood fire is a solution. Pouring water on a grease fire is a problem.
Some processes can't be rushed.
Roasting a turkey for 3 hours at 300 degrees fahrenheit cannot be rushed to one hour at 900 degrees fahrenheit. The turkey would be burnt outside and frozen inside.
Skill and preparation matter, but luck has the last word.
A basketball bounces off the basketball hoop rim twice and then out.
Customize the solution to the problem.
A general solution is to pour water on a fire. A custom or specific solution is to extinguish a grease fire with a CO2 extinguisher.
If your luggage is going to get tossed around, pack accordingly!
A box of martini glasses is thrown onto an airport luggage cart. Expect the worst. Hope for the best.
Framing feedback so it's easier to accept takes skill. Charismatic people are great at this. Great stand-up comedians can too.
Blunt truth is like a bottle of liquid medicine. Tactful truth is like a pill.
Keep It Simple, Stupid.
A person is waving his hands in front of an automatic electronic soap dispenser low on batteries and missing a required Wi-Fi signal. More parts, more problems. Keep it simple.
Good leaders are composed.
Leaders be like a firefighter calmly putting out a fire, not one who freaks out.
"suffering and happiness are not two separate things." - Thich Nhat Hanh
There can't be ups without downs - as in a roller coaster.
Avoid the risk of a permanent game over.
Some risks will end you - like driving off a cliff into the ocean - avoid them.
My secret idea generator:
A bed.
Test your emergency readiness BEFORE disaster.
A person sits in a rowboat in a flood, but the bottom of the rowboat is punctured causing a fountain of water to burst upward.
Productivity tools can steal your time, too.
Two pie charts. With productivity tools, 5% of the time is spent working, while the rest of the time is spent managing multiple apps, analyzing productivity, adjusting productivity plans, and learning newer apps and systems. Without productivity tools, 5% of the time is spent working, while the rest of the time is spent on other stuff.
Don't forget to count your blessings on your journey.
If not for the tree, you wouldn't have shade. Count your blessings.
What the best problem solvers seek:
The best solution is one of lowest cost and highest value.
It's not about the tool. It's about how it's used.
Good in one context, bad in another: like roasting a marshmallow with fire vs. burning a tree with fire.
100 visuals in 100 days. Thanks for all your support!
Me, waving my hands in the air, and a yellow star with a 100 to my left.
Challenge yourself to grow.
Who would you rather be? Someone who looks at a barbell as too heavy? Or someone who sees the barbell as an opportunity to get stronger?
You might not reach your goal as quickly as others, but your broad experiences help you see things others can't.
Some reach their goals faster. Others have a more interesting journey. Some make a beeline for the big yellow star. Others bounce around smaller white stars along the way.
Influencers will doom our species.
What social media is like...sometimes. Someone with 500 followers points to a comet shouting, 'there's a comet coming!' Meanwhile someone else with 50,000 followers is selling, 'this is how you make one million dollars in 5 days.'
It's easy to point out flaws. It's harder to fix them.
The time needed to make things is at least 10 times greater than the time needed to break things.
Responsibility is empowering.
A person holds up a barbell. The weights on the left represent ownership, on the right: responsibility.
How intently are you listening?
There are 3 levels of listening. Like diving in the ocean: the shallowest layer is: hearing. Dive deeper to: understanding. At the deepest level is: understanding from another's point of view. Here is where the treasure lies.
You get what you pay for.
What sales promised: a $300,000 luxury sports car. What the budget allowed: a $20,000 sedan.
"Can you get it done sooner?" asks the boss.
When you're given less time than you need to build something, you're left with a car axle, tires, and a steering wheel, and nothing else.
"Go back to do it right later."
A wheel falls off a car as it drives away. Boss said it doesn't have to be perfect.
Are you still headed where you want to go?
A train route map. The blue line heads north. Every stop is right. The red line heads south. Every stop is wrong. If you're on the wrong train, every stop is the wrong stop.
A small request from a big client = big pressure on a small team.
A line graph showing a company's priorities. For a small client, there's low urgency, so the company says, 'we need to push back on that critical feature.' But for a big client, there's high urgency, so the company says, 'They want comic sans. Release the change ASAP!!!'
Separate the creator from the creation to get the most from both.
The bee is the creator. The honey is the creation. You don't have to like both.
People are like mushrooms. Sometimes the toxic ones appear harmless.
What you don't see - matters. An edible mushroom and poisonous mushroom can look identical from a distance.
Software development is about problem solving. Coding is just a way to implement solutions.
Coding is like hammering nails. Software development is like building a house.
Push back on lower priorities to avoid overloading the team.
When the manager can't say 'no' to more tasks. It's like a bridge sagging, overloaded with boxes.
Push back on unreasonable demands.
A car is attached to the side of a rocket ship. The customer isn't always right.
Learn to develop the parts. Then, learn to develop the whole.
What juniors focus on: the puzzle piece. What seniors focus on: the puzzle.
Thanks to all my friends on here for sharing your unique perspectives while respecting mine. YOU broadened my mind, and I cherish that.
The internet is like a bin with black and white boxes. Where's the nuance?
It's not enough to have tools. Success is about using them effectively.
Play to your strengths. Instead of using a knife for soup, use it to cut a carrot. Instead of using a spoon to cut a carrot, use it for soup.
Explore. Get lost. It can be fun! And you may find a new life passion.
Getting lost on your way to your destination can lead to treasures you wouldn't find, otherwise.
Life is like owning your own car. Others may join you for a ride, but don't just let anyone drive it.
Steer your car of life to the finish line. If you let anyone else steer, they may steer it into a wall.
A win is more satisfying when it's easier to lose.
In basketball, a 2-point lay-up shot is less satisfying, while a 3-pointer is more satisfying.
There's a ton of advice on getting more done, faster. But, you can only appreciate life by slowing down.
Everything's a blur when you're speeding through life. But when you slow down and enjoy the moment, you can see clearly the sun, the trees, the birds, and the flowers.
"what's the point of tests if you don't learn anything?" - King Bumi
In school, the lesson is followed by the test. In life, the test is followed by the lesson.
Not knowing where you'll be is part of the fun.
Where will you be in 5 years? I thought I'd be going in one direction, but I'm actually going a different direction.
You'll either get there faster, or you'll learn much more. Win-win!
Starting sooner doesn't always mean finishing sooner. Two people are in a race. The person above starts ahead, but has to weave around obstacles, and finishes after the person below who speeds straight ahead unobstructed.
Algorithms help you find something specific, but they blind you to possibilities you can't imagine.
Focused search is like seeing a single prize at the end of a dark tunnel. Exploration is like seeing prizes scattered all around.
What corporate life feels like:
A bar graph showing time spent on working is much less than time spent in meetings.
Renew your body, mind, emotions, and soul to keep sharp.
Self-renewal is like keeping a knife sharp with a knife sharpener.
Believe in yourself to reach new heights.
If you're a rocket, belief in yourself is like rocket fuel.