I'm Sabine Harnau
This is my Manual of Me

1/ The things which prevent me from doing my best are …

a lack of trust and communication. My work is designed to reduce my clients' workload and make life easier for them, but I can only do this with their support: supplying information, giving me the opportunity to explain promising approaches, agreeing a course of action before any copy goes live. I can achieve the best outcomes when I understand my clients' goals so I can find the best way to achieve them through my craft.

2/ The environments in which I thrive have …

a good mix of quiet, solitary hours so I can go really deep into the subject matter and get sh*t done — and sociable meetings on video or face to face where we explore the work we're doing together and we need to come up with new ideas on the spot. I don't need that much to do good work: natural light, strong WiFi, electricity and coffee. Bonus points for a nearby bakery where I can pick up a mid-afternoon treat.

3/ The sort of projects which really excite me have …

purpose. They're about making the world a better place, rather than just making more money. They also feature some sort of research and learning component, such as interpreting data, interviewing customers or reading up on the latest psychological studies. And they have a playful side: we're exploring better, more creative and more beautiful ways of communicating. While I'm all for measurable goals, too strong a focus on KPIs can be creatively stifling.

4/ The sorts of outputs and outcomes I create include …

Websites: their structure, user journey maps, wireframes and copy that drives the right actions (sign-ups, purchases, shares, etc.) — Emails: plotting newsletter sequences, writing and scheduling emails in tools like Mailchimp or Drip. My emails increase your open and click through rates. — Tone of voice guides based on customer research, so your ideal customers make an emotional connection with you and support your business financially and/or through advocacy. — Training that helps teams communicate more confidently, serve customers better and write with more pizzazz.

5/ I add value to teams by …

enthusiastically taking responsibility for my contribution. Reliability is very important to me, and I do what it takes to complete my tasks. This isn't as boring as it sounds! As a communications expert, my job is creative problem solving for the benefit of the customer, while honouring the triple bottom line of people — planet — profit. This means that in order to achieve what I'm asked to do, I often need to challenge the status quo in order to create value for others. That's where my analytical skills and my preference for clear, articulate communication come in to make solutions approachable to everyone on the project and create a transparent, welcoming atmosphere.

6/ Beyond work, I’m really passionate about ...

- Crafts — I'm currently waiting to unpack my sewing machines and teaching myself to cross-stitch. - Cats — we've got 3 rescues and they're like little furry children. - Poetry. It's often said that nobody reads poetry... well, I do. Occasionally I also write some. - Politics. Everything is political, and if we spend any length of time together you'll find me breaking out into spontaneous politico-philosophical musings. - Nia — the wholistic movement form that incorporates dance, martial arts and the healing arts. I've got a White Belt, and if I could do two jobs at once I'd teach Nia alongside my communications work.

7/ People often say I’m brilliant at …

Analytical skills — Communication — Challenging the status quo — Creating value for others — Creativity — Enthusiasm — Explaining — Keeping the customer in mind — Organisation — Reliability — Vocalising my thoughts — Welcoming others

8/ The stages of a project I work best at include …

Before the project has really started — when you're still planning. This is when I can add insight into time requirements, different stages and setting realistic goals so we can measure the project's success. But I also like to be involved in the execution phase. A huge part of any project's success depends on the finer details of execution, and this is where my attention for detail, organisation skills and my enthusiasm for getting sh*t done can really make a difference. Finally, to mis-quote a German football saying: after the project is before the project. I see projects as cycles of work, so the testing, learning & evaluation afterwards are very important to me. I like to learn what went well and what can be improved — and fix anything I can optimise easily.

9/ The teams in which I thrive in have ...

a collaborative atmosphere and a good mix of skills and abilities. While I take pride in being organised, on bigger projects I love having an organiser on board — a VA, PA or project manager who can make sure all the different tracks, dates and deliverables are accounted for. People who are strong in historical context and who like thinking about the past can really complement my drive to innovate.