Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Phil Hansen: Embrace the shake

Habits of Work - by Prof. Rusty Smith

Self Reliance:
Self-reliance is an active approach in which an individual drives their own learning and working process.  Rather than waiting for directions or blaming others for delays, individuals actively generates possibilities, weighs benefits, and makes choices.

Paul Cézanne, painter.

Paul Cézanne, painter.
Organized Persistence:
Beating your head against a brick wall is an example of mindless persistence.  It may take weeks, but eventually organized persistence results in a solution.  It gives us the ability to prevail, even when faced with the most daunting task.

Daily Practice:
Momentum is extremely powerful when you are working on a difficult problem.  Daily practice helps maintain momentum.  For example, when learning a new computer program, practicing for a couple of hours each night is better than working one full day a month.    

Yves Saint Laurent, fashion designer.

Yves Saint Laurent, fashion designer.
Appropriate Speed:
Some tasks are best completed quickly, with brisk decision making and decisive action.  Slowing down to re-frame a question and weigh alternative solutions is necessary in other cases.  Knowing when to speed up and when to slow down is one mark of a ‘master learner.’

Incremental Excellence:
Most design problems are best developed in a series of stages.  Ideas evolve, skills improve, compositions are distilled.  Rather than trying for the ‘perfect solution’ on the first day, it is better to just start with a draft.

Yoshitomo Nara, artist.

Yoshitomo Nara, artist.
Valuing Alternative Viewpoints:
Listening to others, understanding diverse points of view, and considering alternatives expands our capacity to solve a wide variety of problems.  Even when the advice is off base, we can often use the idea as a springboard into a fresh approach.    

Direct Engagement:
Talk is cheap.  Work is hard.  The only way to solve most design problems is to get involved.  You will never win a race when you are standing on the sidelines.  

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