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Matt LaVoie discusses the differences between developing user interfaces for yourself and being a servant designer, empathizing with customers.

Matt LaVoie is a User Experience Designer at PowerDMS, and founder of the Downtown UX Meetup group in Orlando, FL. He enjoys teaching and learning about UX, gardening and building things.


Key Takeaways

  • So many times we solve problems for ourselves, we need to solve them with other people in mind
  • Empathize with customers – be a servant designer
  • It doesn’t matter if you know how to use it, you developed it
  • Conduct usability sessions and have everyone on the team sit with the customers, including developers
  • Always keep in mind that there are real people you’re writing this code for
  • Watch people use the software you build
  • According to Forrester Research we are officially in the age of the Customer
  • It’s no longer good enough to solve a problem, it needs to serve the customer well
  • Have a human centric development process
  • Lean startups are about failing faster, but you dont have to launch to fail – use rapid prototyping
    • Drawing on a napkin
    • Balsalmiq
    • Invite people to use it and watch them use it
  • Are you actually building something that somebody wants?

Resources Mentioned

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