mid-interview misunderstandings

In the book, I talk a little bit about the idea of asking business folks and product managers to join me for the interviews. The idea is to involve them in hearing the customer’s stories and also to… Read More

short and sweet research phase

I’ve finished writing my slides for my three hour workshop at Agile08. The theme behind the slides is making mental models fit within an Agile sprint. Some people’s sprints are two weeks long. Other people’s sprints are 6… Read More

below the line – aligning other things

In my book, I talk about the bottom half of mental models as containing the ways in which your organization supports people doing the things in each of the towers. I have also mentioned aligning your competitor’s services… Read More

does tower size mean something?

The other day, Douglass Turner asked me a good question. Here’s what he asked: “One thing unexplained in your book is how to interpret relative length of the bars in the mental model diagram. In fact the vertical… Read More

are interviews the only way to build a mental model?

I get many variations on this question, “Are interviews the only way to build a mental model?” The answer is no, interviews are not the only way. There are many sources you can analyze, some of which are… Read More

audience segmentation – making sure you don’t miss anything

Organizations fear risk, and as a response to that fear, employees dutifully try to record everything that could possibly be of importance. In audience segmentation, this means capturing hundreds of variables, which quickly becomes a barrier to actually… Read More

logistics for user research abroad

Doing user research abroad doesn’t have to be daunting. Keep these logistical tips in mind; you should have no problems working with participants from around the globe. You’ll get excellent results when everyone is comfortable, clearly understood, and… Read More

get the right kind of details from a research participant

This is an early version of how to conduct a rich listening session, where you find out the thinking going on inside someone’s mind as she pursues a larger intent. For example, “I’m presenting to a class this… Read More