Let’s all welcome our newest UX/UI Instructor, Paloma!
I really enjoyed working on a project with the Malaysian Government to write guidance on how to do user research.
UX was a new concept in this sector. We started by reaching out to UX professionals in Malaysia to understand how the UX industry operates and identified what would be important for teams dabbling in user research to know. After drafting some initial content I facilitated user research on the content by doing highlighter testing.
We learnt many things, such as concepts that needed to be more defined and finding that the tone that is appropriate for a Malaysian audience is different to what is suitable in the UK.
It’s one of my favourite projects because It was based on producing guidance for a topic I love (user research), getting to network with UX peers in Malaysia, and doing research to not only produce meaningful content but to also make sure it is culturally relevant. It is now published online which I’m very proud to have been a part of.
This is the exact story of how I entered into the world of UX.
I joined a new role, that was developing an online service using a user centred design approach for the first time. My boss said to me ‘You studied psychology, you will be in charge of UX!’ After some panic and prompt googling of ‘what does UX mean?’
My user research journey began. I knew nothing about digital, Agile, user centred design or user experience.
I transformed into a sponge learning all that I could. Thanks to available resources, short courses, learning on the job and some GREAT mentors, I found my feet as well as my love for user research.
I practised, tried some new techniques and got honest feedback from peers. Slowly and surely I found my rhythm and confidence in the role.
Just like the chicken and the egg, I’m not sure whether my love for user research or puzzles came first. I really love looking for patterns, whether it be for colours, numbers, shapes or human behaviour. There’s something really satisfying in finding trends.
I really recommend that you lean into your curiosity. Us user researchers are interested in human behaviour to understand why users do what they do.
The best way to do this is observe with a keen eye, listen to what is being said, delve deeper and don’t be afraid to ask ‘why?’