newsletter #18  |  15-Nov-2016

Chances are that if you’re subscribed to this newsletter, you’re interested in techniques for understanding others–specifically in the context of supporting people in your work. Chances are you’ve heard what the U.S. president-elect has promised, and a notable part of it goes against the philosophy of understanding and supporting a variety of different people.
Read More

newsletter #17  |  18-Oct-2016

I’ve taught a few workshops on problem-space research, listening sessions, and developing & applying empathy lately. These workshops always have room for Q&A and discussion, and the brilliance and depth of the topics always impresses me. I thought I’d pass some of them along. Read More

newsletter #16  |  20-Sep-2016

I got involved in a Twitter discussion about how a writer defined “active listening” in a UX Booth article:

Tweet by Steve Portigal August 2016 calling Indi's attention to an article in UX Booth saying I define active listening as eavesdropping.

Tweet by Indi Young in August 2016 agreeing with Steve Portigal that active listening is not eavesdropping.
Read More

newsletter #15  |  16-Aug-2016

We saw your cautions about demographics in personas versus deeper motivations that transcend the easily visible segment — and how Jobs to be Done similarly helps us focus on underlying motivations.” Weston Thompson

How do mental model diagrams compare to Jobs to be Done, or to Outcomes? Read More

newsletter #14  |  19-Jul-2016

On my latest client project, we experienced the typical madness around recruiting. The people we thought we set out to find didn’t define themselves the way we did, resulting in a mid-course correction. And then even with the new definition of whom we were seeking, the recruiting firm couldn’t find enough people. We had to step in and recruit for ourselves. Read More

newsletter #13  |  21-Jun-2016

When I help clients learn to conduct listening sessions, commonly people want an example of what it means to go deep. I will do a demo and several exercises. Sometimes this doesn’t quite illustrate what I mean, so I also do one-on-one coaching. Read More

newsletter #12  |  07-Jun-2016

Winners Announced!

Congratulations to Danny Spitzberg of Peak Agency and Ben Judy of Intuit, who each win a print copy of Mental Models.

I received 15 entries, most with good stories about understanding other people’s mental models and how it helped clarify what to design and what to leave off. Read More

newsletter #8  |  05-Apr-2016

I attended the Managing Experience Conference last week, where, for the first time ever, I heard from researchers who already believe in “going broader” in the scope of their studies. That felt awesome! Read More

There’s a cycle that we follow when we develop products: Think-Make-Check. It’s also called a few other things, such as Ideate-Prototype-Test. No matter what the vocabulary, it’s the cycle that organizations seek to spin faster, to make lightweight, to allow for less risky failure. All these are good goals. I don’t want to interfere with the spinning of this cycle. Read More

newsletter #5  |  16-Feb-2016

Most organizationss imagine they understand the problem, and don’t take time to research it. They are content to use what they imagine as the basis for developing their solution. The problem space is where they’ll get their strongest insights and innovations, but you wouldn’t suspect this based on the amount of effort put toward exploring their solution and the people using it. Read More