Work and clients

Strategic UX training for startup initiatives with Creative Bridge

Creative Bridge is a programme targeted at prospective startups from within the creative sector. It is a part of Creative Informatics, a partnership between the University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh Napier University, Creative Edinburgh and CodeBase.

Each of the experts engaged in the programme delivers a session on a particular subject. I am responsible for the strategic UX workshop on understanding customers. Participants explore:

  1. The concept of outcome-focused design, contrary to the mainstream feature-driven delivery approach,
  2. Methods for conducting quick customer interviews,
  3. Basics of the Jobs To Be Done framework that helps them appreciate the need for answering real problems, and provides a method for validation of their initial research.

So far it’s been going very well — both groups I interacted with were attentive and focused. These people have some amazing ideas! And they ask important and smart questions. All I can do is to wish them well in their startup journeys. It’s a privilege to be able to equip them with tools they need to lead their future businesses into fruition.

Yasmin Sulaiman, who invited me to participate in the programme, summarises the experience of our professional engagement so far:

Working with Wojtek makes my job much easier! From the planning stages to the delivery and  post-session debrief, Wojtek is well-prepared, punctual and detail-oriented. Most of all, he’s a charismatic workshop leader and is great at keeping all the participants involved and active over a 3 hour period. Wojtek’s regular session on Understanding Customers has become one of the highlights of Creative Bridge, and he’s generous with his time during 1-to-1 advice sessions with our participants. It’s a pleasure to work with him.

Learn more about the Creative Bridge.

Service design and UX training for Nesta ShareLab

Nesta provides funds and training opportunities to organisations that hope to develop innovative products and services. I was commissioned to provide a tailored service design and user experience training to five organisations taking part in the ShareLab Scotland Programme.

I knew that a typical, academic approach to teaching both subjects wouldn’t work for people who often have very little time and budget in their hands. Additionally, I wasn’t sure what will be the attendees’ level of knowledge about the digital industry and the software/service development lifecycle. Therefore, I have written an intensive programme for a two-day workshop — focusing on practical methods of work and tips rather than lectures. I wanted the participants to leave the training and start using their new skills immediately.

Based mostly on practical exercises and only as little talk as possible, participants explored the following subjects:

  • Personas and participant recruitment methods;
  • Basic user journey mapping in the context of the real world;
  • Interview methods;
  • Methods for constructing quick surveys and gathering insight from social media;
  • Simple collaborative design methods for stakeholders;
  • Measuring interactions in the context of outcome-driven approach.

The training was followed by a series of video calls — consultations on services and products that five organisations were engaged with. This has helped to focus the programme participants on developing a compromise between the user and business needs.

Kyle Usher, Programme Manager for Nesta, received positive feedback about the event. This is what he said about our engagement:

Wojtek created an engaging training programme that helped the projects gather insights from their users, both in person and through the technology, that they were able to feed back into the design and delivery of their platforms to make them even better. Wojtek has the experience and the ability to dive into the details of a new product, ask probing questions and advise on the best approaches to take to develop it further.

The projects who worked with him took a lot away from the sessions, gave me excellent feedback, and I arranged for follow up consultations for them to continue to work with Wojtek individually.

Kyle Usher, Programme Manager for Nesta

UX training and empowerment

UX training participants at work — a group by the wall working on their user journey map, with another group brainstorming at the table.
UX training participants at work

I am writing this post after two intense weeks of working in Poland. I have facilitated four open UX training sessions for 83 people in total. I have also delivered basic accessibility training to El Passion. What a wonderful bunch of people! I’ve lost my voice, but it was worth it. I have closed the trip with my talk on email marketing and UX at the Kongres Online Marketing conference. As usual, I am coming back tired, yet energised and full of ideas and learnings.

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