Random thoughts about design, empathy, and probably food.
The persona character sheet
As with any good role-playing game, the character sheet helps to frame the main characteristics, motivations and intentions of your personas, in a way that's meaningful to the rest of the team. As my husband (a longtime D&D player) says, the character sheet "gives you all the information you need to know to act that character out… and tells the game master how they should treat your character."
Reflections on making vs. managing
When you're a maker, the things you make are visible. You can see them, maybe even touch them. Your achievements, such as they are, belong to you. When you're a manager, you have to get used to your achievements being the result of other people. Your job is to get things done through those people. That requires a different set of skills. Relationship building, conversation, influence vs. persuasion. Hell, you can't even boss people around the way you thought you would be able to when you became "the boss."
Usable vs. Poetic Interactions
The dichotomy of usable vs. “poetic” interactions is something I’ve often come across as a designer, before and after the transition to UX. Whether we want them to or not, the interactions that designers create can help shape behavior, for better or worse.
Reflections on "the tone conversation"
As almost any woman in technology will tell you, our “tone” gets discussed a lot. If we’re assertive, we’re called bossy; if we aren’t assertive enough, we’re told we need to speak up more. It’s exhausting at times trying to figure out which version of ourselves we should be in any given meeting. The trouble with all of this advice, though, is that none of it seems to relate to the outcome you want to achieve. And as a result, we come out of meetings feeling like we either won the day but lost friends, or that our ideas will always be overlooked.