Picture of Michael Lee

The user guide to working with Michael Lee

Written on March 30, 2022
Updated on May 10, 2022

The purpose of this user guide is to give insights into how best to work with me, Michael Lee.

It is a living document, which means, as I learn new things about myself, I’ll be sure to update this document.

An ideal day at work looks like

  • Family is happy
    • Kids are fed and dropped off at school
    • Wife and I are in-sync with the family’s needs for the day
  • Got a tall glass of water and my coffee tea
  • 15 minutes to organize my day
  • I understand the tasks I need to get done without too much ambiguity
  • I have 1 MAYBE 2 meetings
  • 3-4 hour block to do deep work
    • May include a walk to problem solve the issue at hands
  • 30 minutes to clear out my day
  • Note making in my PKM to organize new bits of information
  • I’m able to pick up my kids from school
  • I’m able to stop my work at 5PM EST sharp

Things people might misunderstand about me

  • I ask questions to get clarity
    • One of my core beliefs is that there are no dumb questions
    • Usually when I’m asking questions, I’m doing so to get clarity around something
      • I do this to make sure I understand a problem or topic so that I can make sure there is no miscommunication and prevent from having other repeat themselves
  • I write a lot of information down
    • I do this because I barely remember what I had for breakfast
    • I would rather refer back to my notes instead of bothering you
    • I’m doing it to align on expectations

What gives me energy at work

  • Being creative
  • Deep work
  • Being heard
  • Punctuality
  • Clear communication
  • Clear expectations
  • Respect for each other’s time

What drains me at work

  • Unnecessary distractions
  • Meetings without clear agendas
  • Context switching
  • Being called to a meeting without the need for my expertise or input

Preferred communications channels

  • Async first, unless you need me immediately
    1. Email
    2. Jira
    3. Slack
      • Treat Slack as async
  • Zoom
    • Sometimes communication is just quicker over Zoom
    • If you find that we’re churning in a different channel (2-3 emails/comments) please schedule a Zoom call with me

How can someone earn a gold star with me

Share with me how my work is being impactful to the end user or company.

How I like to receive feedback

  • Timely
    • If you have feedback for me, don’t make me wait
    • Feedback should be given in-person, not in async form
  • If it’s an issue between you and I, I want it to be a collaborative effort to course correct
  • Let’s be partners

Things I can help with that might be helpful to you

  • Sharing about career as an engineer at various organizations
    • I’ve worked at an agency, university, multiple startups at various stages
  • Personal automation
    • Save time by automating repeated tasks using iOS and macOS apps

What motivates me at work

  • Life outside of work

My superpower is

  • Denerding things
  • Speaking with non-technical stakeholders
  • Listening to a problem and getting to the why

My achilles heel is

  • Too many meetings
  • Unclear or unspoken expectations (assumptions)

Important problems

These are a list of my favorite problems that I’m mulling over.

  • How can I be a better husband?
  • How can I be a better father?
  • What’s the best pizza joint?
  • How can I better serve my co-workers?
  • How can I up-level others?

One fun fact about me

I’ve met some celebrities randomly throughout my life. Often times by complete accident.

  • Brad Bird
  • Tyra Banks
  • Mario Batalli
  • The original Yellow Power Ranger, Trini
  • Mr. Belding and Screech from Saved by the Bell
  • Fonsworth Bentley

Stay in touch

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