Giving back to the community and standing up for what matters is our love language.
Growing up in the design industry with a father who was a Creative Director gave Stephen his unique perspective and drive to take on problems like imposter syndrome, the lack of global mentorship, making space and being an ally for Black, Brown, Indigenous, and/or LGBTQ+ voices, and more.
We love helping people make peace with themselves, be more creative, and become better leaders, which is why we made it part of our business model. Everyone who works with us is asked to give back to the design community for at least one hour a week through mentoring and other activities that we will pay them for as a part of their engagement with us.
We provide free mentorship for young designers and leaders every week on The Amazing Design People List.
In April 2020 in response the COVID pandemic, I helped Felix Lee and James Baduor found the Amazing Design People List which has grown into a global platform connecting over 10,000 vetted and verified global design leaders with people looking for 1 on 1 or group mentorships, improve their skills and find jobs. I work with and advise the founders, work as a community partner to create new initiatives, give portfolio feedback, and give free mentoring to designers through the site.
We host the award-winning The Crazy One podcast and YouTube channel.
The Crazy One podcast shares how to become a better leader, be more creative and innovative. I share my experience, challenges and successes leading design for multiple Fortune 500 brands and take on a variety of topics including leadership, creativity, innovation, career advice as well as design and technology trends. The 100+ episodes have been recognized with a Webby Award for Best Technology podcast, has been downloaded over 2 million times, has listeners in over 160 countries, and an average 4.9-star listener review on all global podcast platforms.
We joined #ShareTheMicNow because I see there has never been an equal playing field because companies and events default to listening to white men who dominate leadership positions, board seats, and event stages. Being a white ally means getting out of the way, making space for Black, Brown, Indigenous, and/or LGBTQ+ people to set the vision, and stepping up to support that work in ways that are meaningful for them. This ongoing series of episodes invites Black, Brown, Indigenous, and/or LGBTQ+ people to create episodes of The Crazy One podcast sharing their insights, experiences, and perspectives with no involvement from me
We only mentor female and/or Black, Brown, Indigenous and/or LGBTQ+ led start-ups.
We decided to change how we share my experience and feel that we can make the best impact by only mentoring female and/or Black, Brown, Indigenous, and/or LGBTQ+ led startups. We currently work with multiple startup founders every month.
We only work with event producers who have diverse speakers and attendees.
Today, more than ever, it is NECESSARY that other leaders, podcasters, speakers, influencers, and members of the design and creative communities create unifying actions centered around Black, Brown, Indigenous and/or LGBTQ+ lives, stories, and calls to action. As a speaker, I continue to only work with event producers to have more diverse speakers and attendees and I will no longer speak at any event, which is not making fundamental changes. In many cases, I have also not been accepting any new public speaking engagements and have been passing those opportunities on to Black, Brown, Indigenous and/or LGBTQ+ speakers.
Member of General Assembly's UX Standards Board
Formed with CEOs, CMOs, and other top leaders at the world’s leading companies, the UX Design Standards Board sets industry-backed benchmarks, facilitates hiring and career development, and defines excellence in the field.