My presentation from the Oz-IA 2007 conference (http://www.oz-ia.org/). The focus is that UX practitioners need to think about and deliver UX messages in terms of business and user strategy.
Touches on several social media topics including community building, collaboration, etc. Full speaker notes below. Audio to come.
Slide 1 - Today I’m actually not going to actually talk to you about IA or UX as such. I’m going to talk to you about frustration, about people, about business, about communities. I’m going to talk about how you can talk to the businesses you work with about UX, especially when they apparently don’t “get” what you’re on about when you speak with them about your work.
Slide 2 - So, why “Love in an Elevator” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Love_in_an_Elevator)? Well, I’m not talking about these guys, who certainly do deliver a user experience, but not the sort we’re talking about today. What I AM talking about is your elevator pitch for the strategy you’re bringing to your client or organisation from a UX point of view.
Slide 3 - So, who am I?
A little about me.
I’ve worked in the web industry for around 12 years.
I’ve done web apps development, business analysis, project management and even network security in the past.
These days I run acidlabs. It’s an independent consultancy that works with people and organisations on building collaborative communities around information and knowledge sharing, web strategy and social computing evangelism - particularly in a business context. And, relevant to today, I also does user experience and information architecture work.
Slide 4 - Now, before we get into this, a word of warning.
Slide 5 - I’ve got, what, 45 minutes to talk to you today? And there needs to be gossip time at the end. So by NO MEANS is my intention today to give you any ACTUAL ANSWERS as to what your UX strategic approach should be.
Slide 6 - That said, what I DO WANT TO DO is get you thinking. How many of you here are responsible for communicating UX strategy to clients - whether those clients are the organisation that employs you, or you’re contracting or consulting? I know there are a few of you here - Shane (http://blogs.msdn.com/shanemo/default.aspx), Matthew (http://magia3e.wordpress.com/), Andrew (http://facibusreviews.com/blog/), Stephen, Donna (http://www.maadmob.net/donna/blog/). Me, when anyone will listen.
How many of you are NOT doing that work? Why not? Do you not care enough about what you do? “It’s not my job” is NOT AN EXCUSE OR A REASON for this.
I actually think it’s CRITICAL that no matter where you sit in the UX process or pecking order, you should be taking a BIGGER PICTURE look at your work and asking yourself what it’s really about. I don’t think you can really do the best job possible unless this is your mindset.
Slide 7 - So, what prompted me to pick this subject to speak on? Well, I was in a meeting not all that long ago - we were talking with a PM, a couple of platform techs, some BAs and I heard this...
Slide 8 - Take that in for a moment...
Slide 9 - Language warning here, but “What the fuck?”
Slide 10 - Now, here’s the thing. This isn’t a lightweight project. It’s a major effort that actually has a very significant budget and potentially affects the lives (in REAL, life and death terms) of people. Yet, the non-UX people on this project have no idea what we do nor how it fits into the work that they do.
Slide 11 - So, NO, UX is ABSOLUTELY NOT “here with UAT”. But that issue, or similar issues that I’ll discuss shortly, is something that in very many places forces UX into a place where it’s just unable to deliver real value.
Slide 12 - Of course, there is an alternative. UX can be done well, and it can be done strategically.
Slide 13 - In my ideal world, and I don’t think I’m talking pie in the sky, UX touches business (in a good way) across the board. It comes on to the project RIGHT AT THE