154 - Suzan Bond

Suzan Bond is a writer, leadership consultant, and exec coach to tech leaders

Suzan Bond is a former COO of a scaling startup.

These days she’s a writer, leadership consultant, and exec coach to tech leaders. She’s the creator of Leadership Archetypes, a framework to help leadership teams become well functioning first teams.

Her newsletter, Suzan’s Fieldnotes focuses on the practical application of leadership including an interview series with leaders on a challenge they navigated.

She also loves connecting with folks on Twitter!


Digital tools:

  • Notion
  • Calendly
  • Harvest
  • Spotify
  • Nusii
  • Slack
  • Dropbox
  • Twitter
  • Substack
  • Google (email, keynote, spreadsheets)
  • Riverside.fm (for recording my podcast series on leaders)

Disclaimer: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases on some of the Amazon links that may be attached to the products above.

Q/A ☕️

What is your favorite item in your workspace?

It’s a tie between my wireless headphones and reclaimed wood desk.

My Bose QuietComfort 35 II wireless headphones were a gift from a friend. They felt decadent when I got them, now I can’t live without them. I love that I can walk and pace while coaching and on calls. The noise cancelling is excellent, so I bring them with me whenever I travel.

After years of working from home, I finally got my own home office. One of my first things I bought was a custom-made desk from reclaimed wood. I’m short, so most desks are too tall. This one is perfect. When I sit at it, I feel like the history is imbued in the reclaimed wood. I’ve done my most creative work at this desk.

How do you spark creativity?

Before deep creative work like writing, creating presentations or developing workshop content, I read poetry or creative non-fiction. Some of my favorites include: Natalie Diaz’s Postcolonial Love Poem, Maggie Nelson’s Bluets, Mary Ruefle’s My Private Property or anything by Deborah Levy.

When I sit down to work, I put a youtube video on my iMac in the background. I started doing this at the beginning of the pandemic when I missed being able to go to cafes. In the winter, I favor a cabin with snow falling, a fire crackling in the background. This spring my favorite is a cafe that looks out to abundant plants and flowers with soft jazz plays in the background. When working at night, I put on a dimly lit cafe with low jazz music. I leave these videos on in the background as I work. They simulate the creative vibe I find in a coffee shop, putting me in a flow state.

How do you keep the work-life balance?

Time to shut out the world and connect with myself is essential. I group all my meetings on two days so I have non-meeting days each week for deep work. I aim for three days, most weeks I get at least two. I try not to pick up my phone until I’ve done my morning routine. This gives me time to listen to myself without the influence of the outside world. Shortly after waking I put on my morning playlist and curl up on my chaise lounge with my matcha latte. Sitting here signals it’s time to focus on myself. Sometimes I’ll read a book, other times I pull a tarot card for reflection, or get the mental noise out of my head by writing in a journal. When the weather is nice (April - October) I take a long walk around my neighborhood every evening after dinner. This refreshes me and reminds me I’m part of my local community.
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