People Interact

Blog about people-centered design by Lisa Chow and Sandra Sajonas.

Monthly Archives: November 2017

Designing Your Life with Design Thinking

A recent article in the Technician online has got me thinking about the yet unlabeled life crisis sandwiched between quarter and mid-life that me and many of my peers are be going though. The article discussing design thinking as applied to life/career counseling.

The Designing Your Life Workshop will teach students how to design a life and career they will love using design-centered thinking. In the beginning, the workshop was inspired by a visit by three deans from NC State to Stanford University’s design school where they explored the concept of design thinking. The workshop is also based on the book “Designing Your Life,” by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans.

Using design thinking principles and methods, students are being equipped with tools necessary to put together an action plan to apply to their life/career.

Unfortunately the workshop was only available to students. But this has article has lit a fire and I hope to apply design thinking to my career action plan. Meanwhile, I can at least start by reading Burnett & Evans’ book.


Using Design Thinking on My Career

In a recent article for Fast Company, a former lawyer applies design thinking to reinvent her career.

  1. First she observed and defined the problem. – Mainly, what does she love doing at work?
  2. Next she moved to the ideation stage.  – She generated as many ideas as possible. For her that meant a list of all the activities that excited her.
  3. Then she used rapid prototying to test her list from the ideation stage. Conducting information interview was the easiest way to rapid prototype.
  4. Getting feedback and iterating was next.
  5. Finally she implemented and acted on her solution which was to apply to a psychology program.

I enjoyed this article and it has inspired me to apply design thinking in my own career and life.

Monthly Method Spotlight: Extreme User Interviews

Extreme User Interviews

What: Extreme user interviews are evaluations by individuals who are completely familiar or unfamiliar with a product or service.

When/why: Extremely familiar users can highlight key issues or problems. Extremely unfamiliar users may inspire insight for improvements.

How: Traditional question and response interview techniques can be used or a number of other UX methods mentioned in previous Monthly Method Spotlight posts.

Tips: Extreme user interviews are best done one-on-one to insure interviewees are not influencing each other in their responses.

Interested in using/applying these methods in your work? Contact us for information.