Julie Larson-Green is a boss in every sense of the term: She’s the Chief Experience Officer for the Applications and Services Group team at Microsoft (where she’s worked since 1993!), is passionate about building technology and has earned a handful of notable accolades in her field, like being named one of the Next Most Powerful Women in Tech by Fortune in 2013. Needless to say, we’re welcoming Julie with open arms to take the stage at Re:Make THIS FRIDAY! We chatted with Julie about how she starts her day, what she looks for in an intern and how to get past the dreaded creative block. Here’s what she had to say:


This is how I start my day:

On Mondays, I get up at 7:00am, I spend time catching up on what’s going on in the world while drinking coffee in bed. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I work with a trainer at 7:00am, so my alarm goes at 6:00am.

What advice would you give an intern on the first day at their dream job?

I’m often asked by interns this very question. I tell them to be reliable and be the one everyone can count on. Just promise — do exactly what you say you are going to do. Don’t under-promise and over-deliver — just deliver. And when it’s tough, remind yourself that you get better when challenged.

Here is a photo that fits the caption #iamcreative:


This one I would change to #myteamiscreative! Our team, as a part of our summer picnic, built and raced cardboard boats on Lake Sammamish. Teams worked together to design, construct and sail them. We shared our creative genius and some of the best #epicfails.


What inspires you and where do you go to find it?

I am often inspired by the people around me and the places I visit. I believe that to be creative and inspirational, you must have some life experiences that you can bring and share. It’s about trying new things, like kitesurfing. I love to find out what people are doing and why. When I travel, I think about my experiences and what could make it better.

What is your secret to overcoming creative block and finding productivity?

I have a few things I do to distract my mind and do something else: I talk to a friend, exercise or go for a walk. I find I’m able to think better.


What apps do you use daily?

I love trying out all sorts of apps and I have a few go-tos that I use every day. I stay connected with Outlook, Twitter and Facebook. I’m big on Hulu, Pandora and Net-a-Porter. One that’s rarely heard of but I love for my Android phone is the Next Lock Screen. I’m able to get to my calendar, get on conference calls and get to my favorite app shortcuts.

Who is your favorite maker or someone who’s up-and-coming and doing something really cool in your field?

Dona Sarkar. She’s a great engineer, an accomplished writer and always ahead of the fashion trends.

What is the last thing you made that you were really excited about?

Early in my career, I made my own wire wrapped jewelry. Today, I don’t have the time. I’ve also been known to tinker with my son on computers.

Have anything you’d like to ask Julie? Share your questions for her in the comment section below.

(Photos via @julie_lgreen)