Femme #4: Aida
What do you do for work now?
I work as a user experience and user interface (UX/UI) Designer in a construction company called CEMEX in Prague. As a part of a special programme, I am trying to enable digital transformation inside the company. For instance, last month I had to create a mobile application from scratch to solve an intra-company problem and this month I am working on creating the Digital Marketing Strategy! So, it is a very exciting experience!
What is the path you took to get to where you are now?
I have always been interested in technology, engineering and took a creative problem-solving approach to things, so I studied Graphic Arts and Technology at the University of Zagreb. During my studies, I volunteered for a Croatian startup called Sidrome as a Business Developer and Web Designer. Then. I worked for the global company IBM in Operations and helped students as an Education Coach in subjects like Maths, Physics, and Chemistry.
During this time, I realized that I don’t prefer to be a specialist in a single area. I feel very inspired and motivated when I am able to experience different problems in diverse environments and I am happiest when I am able to help others. In my opinion, UX/UI design is just one of the skills that I have.
What are the biggest lessons you have learned along your way?
The biggest lesson I have learned is that the connections you make are the most important part of life. Nurture your connections and provide value to your community and you will live a happier life, I guarantee!
What does your typical workday look like? Have you developed any routines or habits to stay productive?
“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. What we do with this hour and with that one, is what we are doing.” – Annie Dillard
I think my morning routine determines the quality of the productivity of my day. This is an example of my “good working day”:
I get up at 5.30 AM and go for a walk with my dog Bond (yes, it is James Bond). Then, I revise my to-do list to focus on tasks I need to put my energy on that day. After that, I usually write my gratitude journal and take some time to meditate. After meditation (around 7.00 am) I usually head to the gym and do some cardio. If I don’t workout in the morning, it's likely that I will feel tired the whole day.
At 9.30 am, I get to the office and I am immersed in a deep creative work time until lunch when I try to solve the hardest problems that I have for that day. I usually work in 25-minute intervals, taking 5- to 10-minute breaks (Pomodoro technique). In the afternoons, I set aside time for managerial work, tasks which take one-hour chunks of work or less and doesn’t require out-of-the-box thinking.
After dinner, I go to a meetup if there’s something going on that night; otherwise, I usually do administrative work. This is stuff that requires almost no brain power (check expiration dates on credit cards, book flights, print something for tomorrow etc).
Do you have any side-hustles? How do you divide your time among your different roles?
One word: prioritization! Find out what is important to you and disregard all the other noise in your life. You want to be on your agenda, not somebody else's agenda!
How do you know it is time to move on from a particular job or project?
When I have a dull feeling about going to work or doing a project, and when there is no space for bringing any additional value from my side.
Who has inspired you and helped you in your journey till now?
The person who has been with me in my lightest and darkest moment is my partner. Throughout my journey, he was always my support system and my guardian angel. He believed in me when no one did (even myself) and he encouraged me to take steps in life which I wouldn’t usually take.
I believe that if you want to succeed in life, you need to find a person who will be your support system. It doesn’t matter if it is going to be your mother, father, sister, partner or someone else. This person needs to believe in you and your abilities more than you do.
What brought you to Femme Palette? What has been your experience till now and expectations from the community?
I liked the vision of connecting like-minded women in Prague and helping them grow professionally. I immediately wanted to be a part of this community which connects, inspires and motivates strong women. This feeling was validated on my first Femme Palette networking event and since then my admiration for this community is growing.
I felt excited when Klara and Lucie opened a position for Design Leader in Femme Palette and now I have the opportunity to really contribute and help this community grow even more!
Go-to productivity tools/apps: Notion, Evernote, Google Calendar, Google Drive
Favorite blogs/podcasts you’d recommend: Tim Ferris Podcast
Woman you look up to and why: Every woman who has deep moral values and a sense of giving back to the community