I hope I ACE-d it! ACE! conf, May 2018

Aced it? Get it? Coz, ACE… ace-d it? Moving on!


When Paul Klipp, the brain behind ACE! conference, invited me, this shortstack geek passionate about design thinking, to speak at the event, I was over the moon. I love spreading info about creativity and design thinking, especially among people who are actually interested and can benefit from it! I probably sound like a madwoman, preaching about design thinking left and right, but it’s what saved me and helped me shape some of my career and personal goals. It’s what keeps me grounded in humanity when I try (fail and try again) to be empathic and see the world through other people’s eyes, but floating in creativity, when I try to figure out my next picture, or a hiking route.

Pumped by the invitation I, of course, said yes! Soon after, I stood in front of the audience, vulnerable (fear of public speaking is real!) and muchly aware of my flaws, and spoke about the fundamental ideas behind design thinking – or, actually, behind being a kind human! Those are empathy, vulnerability, and courage.


I presented this talk once before, in Belfast, so I won’t bore you here with copying the same links – if you’d like to read more thought about each emotion, check out those links:


However, this time, I was inspired to put a different spin on it. I was inspired by Paul himself, and the way he handled a pitfall that would scare any organizer – the „I can’t make it” message from your keynote speaker. Chosen by attendees to take the floor instead, Paul chatted about his view on empathy, and how it affects the way he communicates now. In addition, he mentioned the book „Nonviolent Communication” by Marshall B. Rosenberg. I haven’t heard of that book before. The concept of active listening, something I’m totally aware of but not to that extent, made me think about how little we do to introduce empathy into our everyday conversations.


I do my best to be empathic towards life situations I encounter, so I did a little research about empathy especially in communication and conversation, and here is what I found: