The UIE Podcast with Jared Spool

The Next Generation of Podcasts from UIE. Stay tuned for new stories and take-aways you can use in your day to day design work.

Episode #12 Systems and Stages: Building a Design System and a Systems Team

August 11, 2017  ·  20 minutes

Design systems can organize and clarify a team’s design practice. Made of patterns and component libraries, they add a level of cohesion across designs. This, of course, can only occur once you have a design system in place. So how do you build one in the first place?

Nick Stamas, the Creative Lead on the Business Products Team at WeWork, set out to do just that. He surveyed WeWork’s existing designs, noting inconsistencies, and pitched the idea of a design system to help streamline the work being done. His challenge was building this all out while WeWork continued to grow.

Nathan Curtis, author of Modular Web Design, has identified stages that occur when implementing a design system. He shares his insights into Nick’s story and how you go from building the system to working as a systems team. He will be joining us in Boston, November 13-15 to teach one of the daylong workshops at the UI22 conference. For more information, visit uiconf.com.

Listen Now

Episode #11 Narrative Virality: Changing Course from a Simple Story

August 3, 2017  ·  24 minutes

Storytelling is an essential form of human communication. You likely have a favorite story, and it’s probably something really memorable. The more that story is told and retold, the further it travels and the more influence it gains. A good story can be infectious.

Stories can also come from unexpected places. LaiYee Ho is the Head of Research at Wink and joins us for this episode. Early in Wink’s research practice one story in particular resonated with the team that was uncovered during an in-home visit, the story of Dominic and Donna. That story spread throughout the organization and fundamentally changed the way Wink approached their products.

Also on the podcast is Whitney Quesenbery, the author of Storytelling for User Experience. She shares her insights about Wink’s discovery and how storytelling can be one of the most powerful research tools.

Whitney is also teaching one of the daylong workshops at UI22, November 13-15 in Boston.

Listen Now

Episode #10 Empathy as a Service: Applying Service Design to the Homelessness Issue

July 20, 2017  ·  26 minutes

Empathy. It’s an unavoidable word in the world of user experience design. Too often it is applied to designs in too narrow a fashion. Your empathy should come from the problem your design is solving, not measured in the level of frustration or delight experienced with your design.

Ariel Kennan is the Director of Design and Product at the New York City Mayor's Office for Economic Opportunity. She has been working on the HOME-STAT initiative which is an effort of the City of New York to properly provide services to the city’s homeless population.

In this episode, Ariel shares her story and is joined by Marc Stickdorn who offers his insights on how service design can be done on such a massive scale. Marc is the CEO and co-founder of More Than Metrics and author of the book Service Design Thinking. He will also be teaching a daylong workshop at the UI22 conference in Boston this November 13-15. To find out more about his workshop, visit uiconf.com.

Listen Now

Episode #9 Getting a Clue: Journey Mapping and the Rashomon Effect

June 23, 2017  ·  20 minutes

We often talk in terms of silos in organizations, where information isn’t readily shared and communication leaves something to be desired. Another way to think of a team who is heads-down working on the overall journey is to imagine swim lanes. Each department is so focused on their own part of the experience that they might not be fully aware of each step a user has to go through to complete the journey.

In this episode, Conor Ward, Head of UX and Design at Centrica & British Gas, tells a story of how mapping out the journey to acquiring a quote for boiler insurance revealed some unexpected insights. Jim Kalbach, author of Mapping Experiences, also joins the podcast to share his expertise on the subject of journey mapping.

Listen Now

Episode #8 Sticky Situations and Unexpected Solutions — Lean UX Outside the Lab

June 8, 2017  ·  19 minutes

Sometimes, the world of user experience design requires creative solutions. There are numerous methodologies and an even greater number of myths about where and when they are supposed to be used. Lean UX is one such process that is associated mostly with startups and very early stage projects.

But what if you were to apply Lean UX to an existing site? And what if that site was a multinational industry-leader with millions of users?

In this episode of the UIE Podcast, Austin Knight, Senior UX Designer at Hubspot, discusses how the Hubspot team employed Lean UX to tackle their website’s redesign. Jeff Gothelf, the co-authour of Lean UX and Sense & Respond, joins us to offer his insights on Austin’s efforts.

Listen Now

Episode #7 Spirits, Claws, and Analytics — A study in superstition and science

May 15, 2017  ·  20 minutes

Much like superstition, something that is believed to be an important metric may not apply to the reality of your product or service’s experience. Understanding the behavior of your users, introducing some science, is what leads to greater context and insight.

In this episode of the UIE Podcast, Chris Callaghan of McCann UK talks about his experience of joining a team and seeing the superstition first hand: A roomful of folks attempting to derive meaning from numbers, but having the same conversations over and over. Straying from superstition and introducing science started with the simple question: “do we know if anyone outside of this room can use this?”

Kate Rutter joins us to help dispel some of the myths surrounding analytics and offers insight on how to come to true meaning.

Listen Now

Episode #6 Redesigning an Enterprise App to Battle the Clutter Tax

April 5, 2017  ·  20 minutes

If we keep adding functionality, we start to clutter our enterprise application’s design. That clutter can create a substantial burden on the user while obscuring the functionality we want them to use.

In this episode of the UIE Podcast, Amanda Linden talks about her challenge of fighting back clutter in Asana’s design. Hagan Rivers talks about her techniques for helping enterprise app teams deal with the issue of clutter.

Listen Now

Episode #5 It’s Safe to Say, I Don’t Know - UX Immersion: Interactions Podcast

March 18, 2016  ·  12 minutes

Corporate life expects us to be experts, to know the answer to every question. We make “requirements”, which turn out to really be assumptions, but because we never call them assumptions, we never go about testing them. This is as much a social political issue as anything. The higher you are in the organization, the more you’re expected to just know the answer.

In this episode, Jared and Richard Banfield explore the role of design sprints in cultivating an environment where it is ok to say “I don’t know”. Allowing yourself to admit this, and allowing your teammates to as well, leads to greater collaboration as you explore the answers together.

Listen Now

Episode #4 A Story Told About Story Listening - UX Immersion: Interactions Podcast

February 23, 2016  ·  13 minutes

Storytelling is a powerful way to measure our understanding of our users and their experiences. But unfortunately, we don't always get the story right. User experience rests more on listening to what the users want to tell us rather than the stories research teams and designers tell themselves within the confines of their organizations. Perhaps it’s time to first try story listening before recanting the tales.

In this episode, we hear a story from Mike Monteiro about design going wrong. Jared Spool then talks to Marc Rettig about how the team could employ a technique, the Collective Story Harvest, to take apart the problem and come to new insights. All by listening to a story.

Listen Now

Episode #3 Adding New Features Can Literally be a Game Changer - UX Immersion Podcast

January 21, 2016  ·  12 minutes

When your user gets value from your design, they’ll likely make using it into a habit. They’ll keep coming back, forming more habits as they continue to get results.

When we add new features, we often force them to break the habits they’ve carefully formed. That’s what makes our users upset when we change the design unexpectedly. Their old habits no longer deliver the value they once did, and now they have to form new ones.

In this episode, Jared learns from Amy Jo Kim how game designers approach the problem of introducing new levels, weapons, and other features. Amy Jo shows how the way game designers think can be easily applied to your designs.

Listen Now