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The new breed of tech business leaders have repeatedly shown us that user experience should be used as a holistic and strategic approach to business leadership, and not just a sub-set of product or interface design. Putting user experience at the centre of management decisions creates efficiency, role clarity, common purpose, focus and has a depoliticising effect, reducing unnecessary drag on the organisation. By being obsessed with every detail of UX they have also proven that leadership is not a human trait but rather an emergent property of system. i.e. Leadership emerges when a system regularly renders compelling customer experiences. Leaders should then be assessed on the trail of customer experiences they leave behind and not on intrinsic characteristics that may never affect the experience of the customer.
Historically, user experience may have been viewed as a soft metric but these businesses have also proven that the affect on hard business metrics, like revenue and profitability can be immense. Amazon, Google, Pinterest, Zappos, Dropbox, Tumblr and Square put user experience first and have returned billions of dollars to shareholders whilst doing away with cost centres, such as large advertising budgets and media spend.