Being a member of Sense Worldwide naturally means you’re an inquisitive person, because that’s what we do all day, we question, observe, learn and explore – some of us just call it being nosey, but hey we’re good at it!
To help nurture this quality we each search out and undertake training in anything that can be beneficial to our growth, as an employee and a person generally. What you do is up to you, as long as you can show value.
As my role (community manager) at Sense Worldwide involves understanding how we can best find and engage with anyone from a mum hacking her white-goods to a traveller relying solely on their mobile for everything. I wanted to understand a little more about the world of User Experience Design.
To do this I undertook a bootcamp to learn the basics. First thing I learnt; there’s so much to learn! Here are a few of my top ‘takeaways’ from the day, I hope they can be of use to you and if you have any other things I would benefit from knowing, please do comment below.
1) It’s about the whole journey
You may think of user experience design as a stage in a project, confined to one point in time; when in actual fact it should happen throughout the whole project, be agile always test and react.
2) Objectify the problem
Do not speak on behalf of your understanding/views: Do not say “I think that…” instead say “Users say that…” (it must obviously be true, no porky’s!)
3) How to have a UX conversation
– Always ask ‘and then?’ – a users journey always continues. (If you find it hard to remember just re-watch ‘Dude Where’s My Car’)
– ‘It depends’ there are so many routes and factors to consider – not every user will have the same experience, consider as many possible encounters as possible.
– ‘Data/research shows that…’ – there’s so much research around UX design that there’s no need to base something on an opinion, get validation and cut the squabble.
4) There are personas and then there are personas
The difference between a marketing persona and a UX persona is all in the objective, either fulfilling their needs, or yours (sales).
– Marketing persona’s look at where and how you can sell to people
– UX persona’s look at the users goals & objectives and their relationship to ‘things’
5) Test, test and test again
Testing ideas/elements is key – and easy! Whilst testing is a very crucial stage in any project that needs to be done properly, you should be getting feedback frequently and this can be done easily with an idea to test, a place to stop people to talk to and a chocolate bar for bribery.
6) Fit the talent to the problem
When hiring someone for a UX project, look carefully at the problem/objective you have and identify what you need them to specialise in, a ‘UX unicorn’ can be hard (if at all possible) to come by. Make sure they have the skills for your needs. We did a great exercise in the session to identify where our skills lie, through answering a few questions about our attitude and way of working. This helps to identify which area of User Experience might be best suited to you.
Have a go yourself:
1) Answer the following questions and map your answers by drawing a line with a priority to whichever end you most strongly agree:
– Do you think more about the future or the present?
– Do you focus on the details or the bigger picture?
– Do you look more to functionality or insights from people?
– Do you focus on the content or the long term goals?
2) Join together each of the edges to make a puddle.
If you’re interested in taking a course in User Experience Design I can highly recommend General Assembly’s User Experience Design Bootcamp to get you started.