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Company Culture

Getting to Know You – Alyssa Hayes

By: Alejandra Guillen—Content Creator


Job Title:
Senior Product Designer

Born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, but moved to Scottsdale in second grade and have lived in Arizona ever since. 

How long have you worked at Tallwave?
4 years

What is your favorite part of your current role?
I love that I get to challenge myself with new skills and experiences on a regular basis. The advantage of being at a smaller company means I get to have a little more flexibility in the type of work I can be involved with. I really enjoy having the opportunity to expand my skills both within and outside of a traditional design role. 

What’s the coolest thing you’re working on right now?
Currently, I’m working on a client initiative to design and evolve the products and capabilities that empower our client’s consultants to provide top-notch service for their members today and in the future.

What is your go-to productivity trick?
If I really need to focus, I like to put my headphones in and tuck myself away into a dark, secluded area for a bit. If I hit a creativity block, I love stopping to take a walk outside when the weather is good. 

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
“Always have a reason.” I’ve heard this advice in many different ways throughout my educational and professional careers. As a designer, it’s important to ensure I’m considering the purpose and intent for every element and decision I make. Being able to answer exactly why I’m doing something creates a better experience for users and allows me to more easily communicate the value and rationale of what I’m recommending.

Go-to karaoke song?
I’m not really one for karaoke, but I might have a Disney song or two up my sleeve to bust out when I’m goofing off with my son.

What’s the best meal you’ve ever had?
One of my favorite restaurants of all time is actually right next to our new office — FnB, a Scottsdale-based farm-to-table restaurant that checks every box for me. The menu changes seasonally based on what’s locally available and the chef is incredibly talented. Every time I’ve eaten there, it has been unbelievably good!

Outside of work, what are you passionate about?
Climbing, the outdoors, and food are all huge parts of my life and collectively became catalysts in driving me to take a more active approach towards sustainability. A few years ago, I completed a Masters in Sustainable Design so that I could learn how to work through solving issues that impact the environment and society in a more meaningful way. I was able to hone my skills on thinking through big-picture problems with complex and tangled systems. All-in-all, I am passionate about using my design experience and skills to help make sustainable actions easier, more accessible and less intimidating for people.

Family? Pets?
My husband and I have one human puppy, one dog puppy, two cats, and a lot of houseplants 👪 🐶🐱🐱🌱

Where’s your favorite place in the world?
I haven’t traveled as much as I hope I’ll be able to in the future, but the Pacific Northwest is definitely top of my list for now. Trees, mountains, ocean coasts, fresh air, amazing food — it has a little bit of everything for me!

Who inspires you?

Sylvia Earle (American oceanographer, explorer, aquanaut, and author, former chief scientist of NOAA). In 1970, she led an all-female project called the Tektite 2, where she and four other women spent two weeks living underwater and studying the ocean. In 1979, she set a historic record when she spent more than two hours exploring the seafloor (1,250 feet below the surface) in an untethered suit.

I had an opportunity to hear her speak at a SXSW Eco conference a few years back and it was incredible to feel the energy in the room after she spoke. To this day, she continues to be a champion and advocate for the ocean and sustainability. I have the utmost respect for her perseverance, curiosity, and spirit.

If you were a Pantone color, what color would you be?
(You’re seriously asking me to choose only one color? Ugh.)

I suppose my top choice (for now) would be Pantone 520. I even painted my front door this color when we bought our new house :)

Written by Alejandra Guillen—Content Creator

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