User manual for me

Conditions I like to work in:

  • Quiet places with no distractions where I can focus.
  • Creative virtual spaces with energy where teams can work together to explore ideas and solve problems.

Times/hours I like to work:

  • I like to start early and do my best critical/logical thinking earlier in the day.
  • Afternoons and evenings are better for more creative thinking and problem solving.
  • I’m pretty much a 24/7 kind of person, so if I’m not working I’ll be studying, reading, writing, doing other kinds of work, etc., and don’t mind switching context.

The best ways to communicate with me (in order of preference) are:

  • Long-form writing is the best way to communicate with me and for me. It gives me time to consider, learn and form an informed point-of-view.
  • Short-form writing and chat messaging is good for quick discussions and Q&A. I’m online most of the day and happy to chat anytime.
  • Audio calls can seem like they save time but I find they are often don’t result in clarity of understanding.
  • Email is best used for notifications and information that doesn’t need to be built on. I think of email as a document that can’t be edited.
  • Video meetings for sharing screens but I don’t see don’t any benefits in everyone being able to see each other in order to have a conversation.
  • Face to face, especially in groups, is only necessary on special occasions where there are considerable benefits to having everyone in the same space.

The ways I like to receive feedback:

  • I’m a believer in fast feedback loops and course correction so I’d rather get feedback as soon as possible and frequently so I can do something about it.

Things I need:

  • A challenge. I like to get absorbed in understanding and solving problems.
  • Something important to contribute to.
  • To feel like I’m making progress and improving things.

Things I struggle with:

  • Being bored. Repetitive work with no means of progression or outcome to achieve frustrates me. If I have to do this kind of work I’ll find ways to optimise it until I can find a reason not to do it.
  • Not understanding how it all fits together. 
  • Accepting the status quo and not questioning everything at every level.
  • Accepting that not everyone wants to experiment, try out new ways of working, or move as fast as I sometimes do.

Things I love:

  • Learning and thinking about new things.
  • Working as part of a team.
  • Abstract complex ideas.

Other things to know about me:

  • I’m an introvert, which doesn’t mean I’m shy or don’t like talking to people, it means I often need time alone to collect my thoughts and connect new information with things I’ve previously thought and validate assumptions I’ve made.
  • I’m on the autistic spectrum so I often have difficulty understanding what people are thinking and feeling, what is appropriate communication in social settings and take things people say as more literal than they intend.
  • My Myers-Briggs type is INTJ, which means I’m into systems and strategy, logical reasoning and complex problem-solving, and enjoy looking for possibilities for improvement. But I over think things, seem too critical, and don’t give much value to emotions.
  • My Insights personality type is Reforming-Observer, which means I’m committed, determined, independent. I like logic and facts, strive for understanding but get frustrated with vagueness and my own confusion.
  • Sometimes I get excited about exploring ideas and talk fast, which can seem like I’m interrupting people. I can head off in my own direction of thinking and don’t always take others along with me.
  • I can sometimes be too persistent in asking questions to fill gaps in my knowledge and I get that this can come across as being pedantic.