TALKS + WORKSHOPS + PANELS + CONSULTING

As design leaders, it is our responsibility to share our experiences and knowledge, our wins and our failures, and any other insights we might have, to empower and elevate the designers and communities around us. Below are current evolutions of the talks, presentations and workshops readily available off-the-shelf or customizable to your organization's need, followed by additional topics of which I can customize presentations and workshops for your event.

As part of my dedication to serving the community, I do not charge a speaker fee. My only requirement is flight and hotel, and in some cases (AIGA family), I will settle for an air mattress.

 
Frances_Yllana_Talks.jpg
 
 

Wonder Years :
How to Survive Your First Five Years In The Real World

AUDIENCE: STUDENTS, EMERGING DESIGNERS

Being a badass talent is one thing. Being the badass people want to work with is a whole different story.

Learn the soft skills needed for working in the real world, like effective communicating, collaborating with a team you didn't pick and most importantly - surviving the emotional and mental complexities of adjusting to the different cultures that exist in a creative workplace. These skills are essential to becoming the team member everyone loves working with, will help you better sell your ideas and make others want to aid in making them as successful as possible — ultimately contributing to your happiness and confidence at work.

Presented at the 2018 DSVC National Student Show & Conference

 

Through The Looking Glass:
Strategies and Tools for Achieving Equity through Empathy

AUDIENCE: MID-to-senior levels, emerging designers, women's leadership, designers of color

The inequity in our industry is the Product of design and the personas and stereotypes created by the Mad Men who hung the mirrors some of us have never seen our reflections in. We can redesign our Product. And it all starts with empathy.  

Learn how to build the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to acknowledge and address both implicit and complicit biases to effect individual and collective transformation towards boosting diversity and inclusion where you work, while building servant leadership skills in the process. 

Presented at 2017 AIGA Houston Inside Job Conference

 

Mind Control:
Brainstorm Like A Boss

ALL AUDIENCES

Ever have a deadline lurking around the corner and all you have is a blank sketchpad or screen staring back at you? Or have you ever been leading a team that was on the cusp of coming up with that killer idea, but just couldn’t seem to get their head wrapped around the hook? That’s being stuck.

Get unstuck with this interactive workshop that will teach you different games and brainstorming exercises to help you and your team unleash genius on demand.

Presented at 2017 Circles Conference: Workshop

 

 

BRAND YOU : TALK

AUDIENCES: STUDENTS, EMERGING DESIGNERS, ADJUSTABLE FOR NONPROFIT LEADERSHIP 

There are more graduates than there are entry-level positions. How do you break through the pack of applicants to get the job? When all resumes and portfolios are created equal, there’s one more piece to completing the getting-the-job-you-want puzzle: by polishing the brand of YOU.

Based on the talk I've given at the National Student Show & Conference in 2014 and local university student groups, this talk focuses on applying the standard "brand brief" to one's own goals, aspirations and skills to raise their chances of landing and succeeding at their dream job.

"The Brand of You" : Presented at the 2014 DSVC National Student Show & Conference

Additional presentations at TCU, SMU, UNT and UTA

 

BRAND YOU :
WORKSHOP / WORKSHOP SERIES

ALL AUDIENCES

In 2009/10, I started Good For Grasshopper and crafted a series of workshops and meet ups aimed at helping student designers transition into the real world. The "Brand of You: Interview and Portfolio Workshops" series inspired UNT's Visual Communications program (now VisCom) to invite me to teach their second-to-last semester class aimed at preparing their graduating seniors for their last semester (Final Portfolio). I've used the same process in helping my employees establish their career goals and action plans for growth.

This workshop series can include the following based on time allotted:

  • Personal branding & portfolio
  • Learning and building on your superpowers
  • Goal setting & positioning using design thinking 
  • Interviewing skills
  • Presentation skills

Presented within the Final Portfolio / Professional Prep Course, as an adjunct professor at the University of North Texas Visual Communications program - Fall 2014, Fall 2015

"The Brand of You: Interview and Portfolio Workshops 2010-2011 via Good For Grasshopper

 

INVOLVEMENT FOR INSPIRATION:
HOW DESIGN CAN AND SHOULD CHANGE YOUR WORLD

ALL AUDIENCES

Designers are not just designers. We have a unique set of skills including empathy, creativity, strategy and most of all the experience and grit to execute our ideas, which makes us essential to our businesses and community. Getting involved, not only inspires us, but it can give us the inspiration, confidence and platforms to empower and embolden us in the work we do.

This talk draws on my personal experiences and growth to show how getting involved in your community through volunteering enhances and inspires a designer's career and needs for purpose.  

This presentation combines my 2015 TEDxSMU talk (How Designers Can and Should Change the World) and the one I gave at the 2015 Design Expo hosted by the AIGA chapter at the University of Texas Arlington (Eye For Design: How AIGA Shaped My Career). 

 

 

WOMEN's LEADERSHIP

AVAILABLE FOR PANELS, CUSTOM TALKS & PRESENTATIONS, organizational consulting

I speak to multiple topics within the broader topic of women's leadership based on my roles as Senior AD, Senior Designer, CD, ECD within the small, medium and large organizations I've worked. Additionally, I can speak to topics of leadership within the context of the roles I've served on multiple local boards and national committees like VP and President of AIGA DFW and national AIGA initiatives like AIGA Design for Democracy, Ambassadors and EMERGE.

ORGANIZATIONAL LEADERSHIP

AVAILABLE FOR PANELS, CUSTOM TALKS & PRESENTATIONS, organizational consulting

In every role I've served, whether it was for an agency or a non-profit organization, I've played pivotal roles in restructuring and reorganizing existing systems to optimize communication and collaboration within teams. Areas of expertise range from updating old systems to team communications to empowering team members to find solutions to internal problems through design thinking. 

DESIGN THINKING

AVAILABLE FOR WORKSHOPS & PRESENTATIONS, organizational consulting

Design Thinking has been used in AIGA and other nonprofit frameworks prior to the popular acceptance of the term. Through my IBM Facilitation training (supported by AIGA), we've been able to codify and fine-tune its application to the needs of both businesses and nonprofits. 

Because of my immersion in business leadership and within nonprofit boards and committees, I can help organizations apply design thinking tools with purpose and intention, ultimately leading to real action and sustainable progress towards their goals.