Towards the beginning of the semester I felt I had just been dropped in the deep end but slowly and surely I learned to swim. By swimming I mean navigating the complicated and powerful world of WordPress while developing my own personal and professional writing style. The start to the class wasn’t easy but after I got in the groove of blog posting it was no problem at all. Along the way I learned more about document design, personal branding, and professional development than I had ever expected. With a brand new LinkedIn (My LinkedIn ) and documents utilizing user center design my writing is operating at peak efficiency.
Taking it One Step Further:
Now that I have developed myself as a more professionally conscious writer and personal marketer I have found myself in the position to expand my network and professional image. Combined with this class, I have been taking a web design class where we have created personal websites for ourselves (my website). Using our principles of document design I was able to create and kind of nifty looking personal page separate from my LinkedIn. I was hoping this would serves as a second place other than WordPress to display some of my other skills (like web design and coding) while showing consistency throughout my personal pages. One lesson I have learned is that consistency can really improve the impression you are trying to make.
Not only have I been able to work on developing skills concerning technology but my actual form of communication via emails, blog posts, etc. has improved dramatically. I feel that I have gained a real sense for how documents can be read more effectively simply by adding certain spacing and grouping of different elements. I look forward to watching more of Dave Underwoods’ lectures as they are really awesome and a great inspiration. I find that not only does he offer good advice specifically on design but also on how organization can create impressions in viewers and readers. I believe using a combination of Dave’s lectures and Lynda.com would be extremely beneficial tools to utilize moving forward. Lynda.com is a great resources that I urge everyone in CU, or anyone who has access, to use. Their comprehensive videos can give great insight and information into just about any topic. As I have become more aware of my personal brand I have begin to watch lectures on how people develop themselves professionally including what works and what doesn’t. So I say to all, USE YOUR RESOURCES!
How Others Helped Me:
The group project appeared to me as a bear. To my surprise, we quickly began to figure out a communication schedule and our separation via location seemed somewhat irrelevant. I was intimated at first upon how I was going to communicate across some online platform efficiently (as I have not had very good experiences in the past) but everyone seemed to understand how to use each tool and we quickly became a lot more of a cohesive group. I believe that moving forward I would stress the importance of communication and that it doesn’t have to be very hard if everyone can figure out how to stay on the same page. Using texts, emails, Google Docs and Slides we were able to communicate across multiple medias in order to come together and get some great work done. With the emphasis of group projects growing at Leeds I find myself in a unique position where my experiences in this class have allowed me to develop communication skills that will help me dearly in the future.
To Wrap it Up:
This class has progressed my personal development in ways far beyond my linguistic skills. I feel confident that I can leave this class and produce professional documents that incorporate the principles of UCD with strong voice and attention to the audience. Understanding my audience has been a large improvement upon my past understanding. I know more about understanding what perspectives and ideals may be associated with different groups and how my own personal perspective can allow me to communicate with these groups in different ways.