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Your Strategy Speakers for Big Design 2012

Check out this great group of speakers in the Strategy track for Big Design 2012.  You’ll love each of these talks and you can learn from each person.

Russ Unger. UX Principles of Jim Henson

Jim Henson started working as a puppeteer in 1954, a fair 40-50 years before many of us even considered User Experience as a career. He did, however, take it upon himself to apply many of the core principals that UX Designers are falling love with today (or are at least using as part of our everyday lives). Hang out for a quick dive into the life of Jim Henson, with a view into his work from the perspective of how it pertains to what it is we’re doing today, that promises to even leave Waldorf and Statler happy.

And yes, there will be muppets.

Ben Judy.  Axis & Allies: Design Thinking in World War II

The Axis and Allies had vastly different approaches to design during the second World War. The German war machine operated with equipment built around such values as precision, technical accuracy, and complex innovation. By contrast, Allied equipment was often simpler, more durable, and “scrappier.”

The trade-offs are fascinating: Durability vs. accuracy. Reliability vs. uniqueness. Speed of delivery vs. quality control. Usability vs. power. There is much a modern-day designer (in any field) can learn from armies of the past and the industries and cultures behind them.

Tomer Sharon.  Achieving Failure: Alienating Stakeholders from Great UX Research

UX researchers love spending a lot of time working on research projects nobody needs. This talk features tried and tested techniques for alienating stakeholders of UX research in a way that ensures they refuse supporting it. The primary motto of the talk is that stakeholder alienation for UX research is attained by making any research activity yours, not theirs. Excluding stakeholders throughout the process of planning, execution, analysis, and reporting UX research dramatically increases the chances that they will ignore its results. The talk suggests 14 tips and tricks for fostering truly bad relationships with UX research stakeholders.

Teresa Brazen.  Intentional Environments: Designing a Culture of Co-Creation

Design doesn’t happen inside a vacuum. It happens inside teams, inside the context of relationships, inside physical spaces, inside organizations with very particular cultures. Ignore that intricate ecosystem, and you might as well give your project a death sentence.

Teresa Brazen will draw from her experience bringing this holistic outlook to the design process. Pulling from methods used in filmmaking, fine art, design research, facilitation, improv, and UX design, she crafts “intentional environments” for her teams and clients. These literal and figurative environments cultivate work that is actionable, co-created, co-owned, and much more likely to succeed in the world.

Marcelo Somers.  Defining a Core Focus: What Job are You Doing?

Companies must continually ask themselves, ‘Are we in the steam locomotive business, or in the transportation business?’ Companies do not last forever. As a matter of fact, over the last 35 years, no technology company has maintained prosperity the entire time. This is shorter than the average time a person will be employed. So with behemoths like Kodak dying off year by year, how can a company maintain long-lasting prosperity? We will explore “Jobs To Be Done” – a framework that asks the question of what job consumers “hire” products to solve.

The most famous example of the appliation of this framework is a fast food restaurant’s attempt to improve sales of milk shakes. At first, they tried to improve the product through customer segmentation. What they learned though is that customers were “hiring” milkshakes as a breakfast alternative that entertains during the morning commute. By better understanding, and addressing this job, they were able to gain share against their real competitors: boredom and bagels.

Ezra Englebardt & Timothy Parcell.  Defining the New Partnership

For years, Art and Copy ruled the roost in the worlds of advertising and design. But as brand interactions shift from passive to active experiences, the way we connect to customers requires a new partnership. Sapientnitro believes that Brand Strategists and Experience Designers play an integral role in delivering the work that breaks through the noise.

This new partnership is critical during the initial stages of client engagement (discovery, defining) through completion (designing, developing, deploying). Whether we’re redesigning or building interactive menu boards for Dunkin’ Donuts, a strong partnership between strategy and experience design is at the foundation of all our work.

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1 Response

  1. Janet Kafka

    I really enjoyed the conference on Friday….great job! I am just wondering where the presentation PowerPoints can be accessed now that the conference is over. Hopefully they will be available as there was so much good information and I didn’t want to miss a thing by taking too many notes!

    I did not attend on Saturday and there may have been announcements about this on that day.


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