Members share Management Tips & Tools in RGD Virtual Community for In-House Design Managers
Kyle Schruder RGD, Design Director at Coactuate, shares notes from the In-House Design Managers community gathering!



RGD Virtual Communities bring together Members from across Canada who work in similar areas and/or who face a particular set of challenges to share knowledge, discuss experiences, propose solutions and support each other. The RGD In-House Design Managers Virtual Community brings together Members managing in-house design teams to discuss the unique challenges and opportunities they face as leaders within their organizations. 


Here are Kyle's notes from the group's last meeting.


In-House Designers Meeting Notes 

As we get this virtual group kicked off, we welcomed 16 Members!
Performance Evaluations & End-of-Year Reviews
Performance reviews were a hot topic as we wrapped up 2020. We discussed how self-evaluations could be an excellent tool for teams to use, rather than only top-down feedback. It helps designers think critically about their roles, how they’re performing and what they want to achieve in the upcoming year. Having this information is great as a manager because you’re able to frame your feedback in a way that will resonate with your team members and hopefully align on goals that will keep everyone motivated moving forward.
Unfortunately, not all reviews can be glowing. We discussed ways to manage under-performing employees, which can be especially difficult in an environment that doesn’t discourage doing the bare minimum. 
We agreed that a review should never be a surprise. Reviews shouldn’t only happen at the end of the year — your team should know where they stand coming into the meeting. You ensure this by having regular performance-related conversations throughout the year, rather than providing feedback rarely or sporadically.   
So Many Tools, So Little Time
Project management has been on our minds coming into this new year. In filling out an in-house on survey, we were shocked at the sheer number of tools available! We discussed options but there’s no silver bullet at the end of the day. You need to have good PM behaviours in place before any software can be useful.
What to do when a Teammate Shares their Grief
A resource we liked was this article by Lara Hogan. It breaks down in detail ways you can be supportive when teammates need to share loneliness, grief or despair. In the year we’ve all been having, these conversations are common and not easy to navigate. It’s essential to learn ways to handle moments like these in advance before you need to be there as necessary support for your team.

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Virtual Communities are open to Certified RGDs, Provisional RGDs and Affiliate Members who meet the criteria for the specific group. To express your interest in this Program, identify preferences and/or volunteer to be a Community Leader, fill out this form. Details on becoming a leader of a new RGD Virtual Community here


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