Hello! My name is Yasmin, and I am currently working as a UX Researcher at ExperienceLab in London. Today I’m going to share what I have been up to this week and how I entered the world of UX.
Before I joined ExperienceLab I was pursuing a role in the NHS working in Clinical Psychology. Personally, and professionally, 2022 was the year that I decided that I would explore a new avenue in my career. In February I interviewed for ExperienceLab; a leading name in User Centred Design. Fast forward four-months and I can honestly say that this was the best decision I have made for my career and personal life.
With ExperienceLab launching its new rebrand with the same ambitious goals as myself I wanted to share an insight into what my daily life looks like now:
8:50am – Ready to go
Today I will be working remotely conducting user research with one of our external clients. We have six qualitative interview sessions planned over two days with participants from both the UK and US. We will be testing some new concepts where the insights delivered will help the client continue to develop a new digital product. Before the sessions start, I am checking my emails for any recruitment updates, changes to our discussion guide and working my way through a large coffee.
9:30am – Team stand up
Time for our weekly team stand up. Here we learn about what projects our team are currently working on, what their focus for the week is, and to give any shout outs to colleagues. I always look forward to this time and find myself learning something new each week.
10am – First research testing session, glasses on!
We speak to our first participant of the day and guided them through several new concept designs. We gathered their thoughts, feelings, and reactions towards them with the client and a couple of designers observing.
12pm – Dog walk
After a debrief with the team, and some iterative discussion guide edits, it was time for some lunch and to take my sausage dog, River for a walk.
1pm – More research sessions
Two more research sessions are underway, let’s gain some user insights!
4pm – Whole team meeting
This afternoon is our monthly team meeting. I am continually inspired by our senior leadership team and how engaging our team discussions are. Today’s introductory exercise was focused around a companywide walking challenge that we are taking part in. Want to know our team name? – ExperienceLegs!
‘Walking in their shoes’
Our task was to draw a shoe and present to the team why we chose to draw that shoe and what it represented for us. My mind went straight to badly drawing (I am no artist) a walking boot. My thinking behind this was:
- The laces on a walking boot need to be purposefully connected when tying the boots up. For me, this represented how important it is to consciously be aware of how we are connecting with our clients and research participants. When building relationships in a research session it is important for me not to see myself in a position of expert, making assumptions and ensuring that the participant feels heard, listened to and valued.
- Walking boots are usually rugged and put through their paces, sometimes tested to their limits when out hiking. For me, this represented how we need to continually be considering the wellbeing of our research participants. We need to ensure that we build psychological safety with them by rigorously following ethical principles.
- Walking boots go on many adventures, either alone or with friends. When at work it is essential that we are modelling warmth, empathy, and genuineness to help drive collaborative relationships. This being with our colleagues, clients, and research participants. Bringing compassion to our roles helps us navigate the many adventures and challenges of researching and designing successful products, services, and experiences.
After work: Time to exercise
Working remotely gives me the opportunity to do more of what matters to me outside of my role. After I finish work, I head to see my personal trainer and coach. My favourite type of exercise being something to do with a throwing a dumbbell, kettle bell or barbell around the gym and practicing my Olympic lifting.
Being able to exercise really helps me process the day and reflect on what we have achieved together as a team. I reflect on one thing I have noticed, one thing I have appreciated and one key takeaway from today. Then it’s time for some dinner and to prepare to go down to London to see everyone in person this week!
I hope this has been a useful insight into my day as a UX Researcher at working at ExperienceLab.
If you are thinking of making the switch into UX Research, what is stopping you? Looking back, I realise how holding a narrative of ‘this is what I have always done’ kept me from making a change. Sitting in that uncomfortable seat really helped me to step into this role and positively change my daily routine and career direction.
The good news? We are currently recruiting, come and join us! If you have any questions about the UX Research role or what it is like to work at ExperienceLab, please get in contact with me and I would be happy to share some further reflections.
Yasmin Carter. Connect with me on LinkedIn.