A Different Kind of Data: Mona Patel on Your Messy Brilliance® Show
I’m thrilled to bring you the latest episode of Your Messy Brilliance® Show—an incredible conversation with my friend Mona Patel. Mona is the CEO and Founder of Motivate Design, a user-centric design agency based in New York City. She’s also the creator of Insider Insight, which helps companies get the tough answers they’re after by connecting to customers with real-life conversations. It’s an approach that I love because it’s distinctly feminine—that is, it’s about compiling stories instead of data.
Aside from working with some of the biggest brands in the world, including NASA, BMW, and Microsoft, to optimize their customers’ experiences, Mona is also a mom, author, and innovator extraordinaire. I highly encourage you to check out her bestselling book, Reframe: Shift the Way You Work, Innovate and Think, so you can start finding opportunities to innovate and activate your genius—especially when all everyone else sees is a problem!
This spirited conversation includes a discussion on the power of messing up; what it means to learn, guess, and iterate as you go; the power of belly laughter and not taking yourself too seriously; the importance of asking the right questions; and how, when people can be themselves and open up, this results in a different kind of data from what you’d find in regular survey results.
I especially loved talking to Mona about her approach to success, which she describes as “success with a lower-case s.” As a testament to the power of connecting with intuition, Mona shares her current definition of success: “hearing and following a path I wouldn’t have thought of if I didn’t stop to take a breath.”
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2:03 Mona’s professional life and her knack for helping clients find the “missing link” when connecting with customers
4:10 Mona’s messy road to becoming an entrepreneur
6:45 The importance of balancing actions based on feelings and actions based on strategy
9:50 The challenges and rewards of being a direct person
11:52 How empathy-driven and human-centered strategies have shaped Mona’s life and business
16:27 How Mona came up with Insider Insight, and why it’s so much more awesome than typical focus groups
20:30 Mona’s book and the power of reframing our thoughts
24:59 The key to innovation: listening
25:53 The reason making mistakes equals success for Mona—and what it means to come to your own definition of success
30:00 Why getting older can lead to mindset shifts
31:55 The power of being aligned with your inner guidance
35:00 Breaking down and releasing who you think you need to be in order to step into your truth