About Me: People, Product & User Experiences

Manny Becerra as a child

I have a passion and successful track-record for creating usable, online, experiences with a focus on and deep appreciation for web standards, modularity, accessibility, and inclusion. I build and lead happy, productive and empathetic cross-functional teams within a continuous learning culture.

I have been fortunate enough to grow into leadership positions where I recruited, on-boarded, led, coached and mentored happy, high-performing and empathetic teams made up of individuals of diverse backgrounds.

I have a reputation with coworkers of being team-oriented, influencing across an organization in getting things done collaboratively with cross-functional teams, and of being a reliable and reflective, hands-on leader: knowing how much and when to get involved on a tactical matter, and when to defer judgment, trust and responsibility to others on the ground to steer the team's trajectory toward paradise, if you will.

My jam is to approach any project and product, small-or-large, with clear intention, extensibility, sustainability and inclusion under a compassionate, kaizen, servant leadership style.

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Too often, individuals and teams build brand and product design (UI/X) in isolation of each other; however, they are inseparably connected. Our work and practices in tech are also inseparably tied to the lives of the people that use our products, both directly and indirectly, which presses the importance of inclusive design. By extension, I make a conscious effort to surround myself, professionally and personally, with people that also see and value this interconnectedness between our work and society.

Teams and products that weave-in EQ into the fold, even better; actually, a must in my books.

On Systems

"with time, things turn into a mess"

As the second law of thermodynamics underscores, things get messy over time, however, that's no reason to throw in the towel; if anything, it's more the reason to explore different, sustainable ways to conduct our work. Whether I'm designing and coding full-time on a project, or leading a team in a tactical or visionary capacity, or a combination of both, my team and I leverage design systems as a part of the product creation and tooling process. When it makes sense, I create my own and support my team in creating one for our own products. Design systems make our work and output not only more ideal, they optimize collaboration with cross-functional teams and help bring great ideas and high-quality products to life faster than otherwise.

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Takeaway: Projects can get messy; especially, in the ever-changing tech world. Learn about and leverage design systems to help bring order-to-chaos and assist with scaling your projects with quality, consistency and confidence.

Related good reads, resources and people

I'm a big fan of Jina Anne, Diana Mounter, Mina Markham, Rachel Andrew, Jeffrey Zeldman, Jen Simmons, Tatiana Mac, Marcy Sutton, and others' work in the area of systems, design, standards, learning, A11Y, and CSS. I would strongly recommend checking out all of their evolving work and advocacy in their respective areas of focus on making web experiences and tech culture better, more accessible and enjoyable for everyone.

Here are some relevant resources to good reads: