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This was first published on my mailing list The Year of the Looking Glass. Sign up to get essays like these in your inbox 1–2 times a month.

I have a confession to make.

As a designer, for years my primary goal was striving to improve my product intuition.

You see, I believed:

  • The most wonderful products are that way because of a leader’s keen insights borne of their intuition.
  • People in suits and ties looking at sheets and sheets of numbers are missing the critical point — what it feels like. …


After nearly 14 years at Facebook, the time has come for me to embark on a new adventure.

It’s hard to say goodbye to a place that has been so much a part of my life. The closest metaphor I have for it is “leaving home.” (In fact, I have spent more years at Facebook than I did living with my own parents before heading off for college!)

Facebook is the first and only place I’ve ever had a full-time job. It’s where I was introduced me to the profession of design, to the practice of management, to the exhilarating and chaotic swirl of Silicon Valley’s start-up culture. From the first day I walked into the scrappy offices of a college site created by recent college grads, Facebook has been an enormous part of my identity and and my community. I grew up here. Its values will always run through my bones and color the lens from which I see the world. Some of my best friends today are people I’ve hacked with. I am so, so grateful to Mark and to the brilliant, good-hearted people that I’ve had the privilege of working with and learning from. …


An idea from a late CEO is helping me find moments of bliss

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Photo: Ethan Hoover/Unsplash

It’s been more than two months since the world as we know it was upended, and life has found a way to continue its relentless march forward. New routines have been discovered, but old habits have resurfaced. At home, it’s easy to let the days blend together into a blur of screens.

With summer approaching, I find myself thinking about the book Chasing Daylight, which has been lingering in my mind. Written by the late Eugene O’Kelly, a prominent finance CEO who found out he had terminal brain cancer and only three months to live, the book chronicles his final mission: to die well. …

About

Julie Zhuo

Currently: Inspirit. Former Product Design VP @ FB. Author of The Making of a Manager https://amzn.to/2PRwCyW. Find me @joulee. I love people, words, and food.

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