Aaron Irizarry

Sr. Director of Design, Capital One

Aaron "Ron" Irizarry is a Sr. Director of Design at Capital One, he is also the co-author of Discussing Design: Improving Communication and Collaboration Through Critique. When not leading teams and mentoring designers, Aaron enjoys spending time with his wife and two daughters, sharing experiences with others through food, cheering for the LA Dodgers, and working in his garden.

Aaron Irizarry

Speaking at The Conference

Leading Successfully, Through Leading Ourselves

The way organizations are approaching product development and emerging technologies are constantly changing. At the same time our practice as designers is evolving with new tools, techniques, and approaches, surfacing at a pace that can be hard to keep up with.

What does this mean for us as leaders of teams (big or small)? How can we lead teams in progressive orgs going through digital transformation or orgs that are slower to adapt?

By focusing on developing certain skills, disciplines, and characteristics, within ourselves as leaders, we prepare ourselves for the challenges we face when leading our teams and working with our partners. We also set ourselves up to be leaders that can coach, nurture, and elevate our teams to be best equipped for the challenges they face as they execute on their work.

In this presentation, Aaron will share insights, tools, and techniques (from personal success and failures) for growing his own leadership skills, overcoming leadership challenges, and successfully developing teams.


  • Gauging and improving our EQ as leaders.
  • The role of vulnerability and transparency in successful leadership.
  • Adaptive communication and leadership styles for different types of team members and partners.
  • Leading through enabling autonomy.
  • Creating personal norms for successful leadership.

Q&A with Aaron Irizarry and Kristin Skinner

Andy will take your questions for Aaron and Kristin.


Gauge And Improve Your Emotional Intelligence As A Leader

Data indicates that psychological safety, more than anything else is critical to making a team work. When emotionally intelligent leaders create psychological safe spaces their teams do their best work.

In this 90min Masterclass attendees will learn about the importance of being an emotionally intelligent leader. We will dig deeper into the impacts emotionally intelligent leadership has on a team's ability to collaborate and deliver as well as what happens when emotional intelligent leadership isn't present.

We will do a collaborative activity that will help attendees...

  • Increase our awareness of our own, and others’ preferences and working styles.

  • Use emotional intelligence as a foundation for team and partner empathy.

  • Walk away with a better understanding of how our working styles have their strengths and their limitations.

  • Understand the ways a diversity of working styles makes for better teamwork and results.

Now sold out

Creating A Vision That Sets Your Team Up For Success

When teams have a shared vision it becomes much easier to increase team communication and collaboration. Not only are teams aligned but when a team vision is shared and understood by partners it improves partners relationships and collaboration.

In this 90 min Masterclass attendees will learn the value of having a shared team vision, how it can help the team work autonomously, and how it can strengthen partner relationships. Attendees will learn what goes into creating successful vision.

We will do an activity that will help attendees...

  • Understand the key components of a team vision

  • Create a draft of a shared vision (mock or real)

  • Get feedback from one another and refine their vision

Now sold out

Creating A Partnership Canvas With Cross-Functional Teams

Cross functional partner relationships can present a number of challenges if teams aren’t aligned on how they are going to work together. A partner charter can help teams stay aligned on their shared goals and how they plan to support one another.

In this 90 minute masterclass attendees will learn about partner charters and how they help cross functional teams stay aligned and accountable to one another. We will look at real world examples of partnership charters and how they addressed challenges teams were facing.

We will do an activity that will help attendees...

  • Understand the key components of a partner charter

  • Create a rough draft of a charter

  • Get feedback from one another to refine their charter

Now sold out

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