User Experience Management

Essential Skills for Leading Effective UX Teams

By

  • Arnie Lund, PhD, CUXP, Principal Director of User Experience at Microsoft.

User Experience Management: Essential Skills for Leading Effective UX Teams deals with specific issues associated with managing diverse user experience (UX) skills, often in corporations with a largely engineering culture. Part memoir and part handbook, it explains what it means to lead a UX team and examines the management issues of hiring, inheriting, terminating, layoffs, interviewing and candidacy, and downsizing. The book offers guidance on building and creating a UX team, as well as equipping and focusing the team. It also considers ways of nurturing the team, from coaching and performance reviews to conflict management and creating work-life balance. Furthermore, it discusses the essential skills needed in leading an effective team and developing a communication plan. This book will be valuable to new managers and leaders, more experienced managers, and anyone who is leading or managing UX groups or who is interested in assuming a leadership role in the future.
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Audience

New managers, leads, or those that are expecting to become managers or leads in any of the user experience areas (e.g., user experience, human factors and ergonomics, usability, human-computer interaction, design, and user research)

 

Book information

  • Published: April 2011
  • Imprint: MORGAN KAUFMANN
  • ISBN: 978-0-12-385496-4

Reviews

Few have had the time or opportunity to get the kind of experience that Arnie Lund has had. Our very good fortune is that Arnie is the very essence of the reflective practitioner, and has the generosity of mind and spirit to turn his own career experience not into an autobiography or a "managing as I see it" book of tips.  Instead, Dr. Lund takes a deep and wide look at the kinds of organizations and the different kinds of work that he has seen, from many vantage points, and uses that to engage a remarkable set of colleagues to reflect on, explain, and extend the practice of managing experience design. Arnie has been managing on the edge of the emerging fields involved here for as long as they’ve been emerging.  The breadth of his experience and the discipline of his reflection on it makes for a remarkably comprehensive collection of issues.-Dr. Rick Robinson, Research Fellow, Design Continuum, Boston

Lund, a user experience manager who has taught user-centered design and related topics at universities, explains how to be an effective user experience team manager. He draws from his experiences and those of other managers to focus on the specific issues associated with managing user experience skills and leading a team in corporations that are mostly engineering-based. He discusses building, equipping, focusing, nurturing, and creating a high-performance team, including defining a strategic framework, creating team identity, identifying and shaping shared values, growing the team as individuals, dealing with conflict, and balancing work and personal life, as well as transforming the organization. -- SciTech Book News




Table of Contents


Dedication

About the Author

Chapter 1 Introduction

    One Manager’s Personal History

    Questions You Might Be Asking

    Intended Audience

    Navigating the Book

    Highlights from the 2010 SIGCHI Panel “Managing User Experience-Managing Change”

Chapter 2 Building the Team

    Hiring

         Identifying the Skills Needed

         Interviewing

         Finding Great People

         Interns

         Vendors and Contractors

         What About Certification

         Salaries

    Inheriting

    Firing

    Layoffs

    Building a Great Team

    Interviewing and Candidacy

    Merger and Acquisition: Impact on UX Management

    Building and Managing a Consulting Team

    Letting People Go

Chapter 3 Creating Your Team

    A First Day Experience

    Sizing the Team

         Small, Medium, and Large Teams

    Defining the Mix of Skills

    Positioning the Team

         The Need for Champions

         Distribute the Team or Centralize It

         Positioning Within the Company

         Higher or Lower in the Company

         Where Should People Sit

         Working Remotely

         Moving Your Team in the Organization

    Funding the Team

         Estimating Your Needs

         Direct Funding Versus Strategic

         An Engagement Model

    Positioning Within the Company

    Working Remotely

    What Do You Mean by UX Globalization?

Chapter 4 Equipping the Team

    The Environment

         Lab Space

         Design Studio

         Ambient Spaces

    Tools

    Budgeting

    Other Opportunities

    Budgeting

Chapter 5 Focusing the Team

    Finding Your Soul

         Ideas Shaping My Approach

    A Strategic Framework

    Defining Your Vision and Mission

         Vision Statement

         Mission Statement

    The Elevator Pitch

    Creating a Strategy

         A Case Study: Creating a User-Centered Culture

    Five Management Dimensions in Managing a Usability Design Team

    Lessons Learned in Managing a UX Consultancy

    Building an Integrated Information Architecture Practice at Sapient During the Dot-Com Boom

Chapter 6 Creating a High Performance Team

    Define Your Team Identity

    Taking the Team Pulse

    What People Want

    Moving Through the Growth Cycle

         Managing Through Change

         Winning Loyalty

    Identify Shared Values

    Clarity in Roles and Responsibilities

         RACI

    Mentoring and Apprenticeship Models

    Training Organizations

    Boomers, Gen X, and Gen Y Differences in the Workplace

    Using DISC Profiles to Get New Teams Talking

    HR Policies and Rationale

    Managing a Fast-Growing UX Team and Maintaining Quality

    The 4 Stages of Team Development

Chapter 7 Nurturing the Team

    The Critique

    Growing Performance and Careers

         Setting Commitments

         Fruitful Coaching

         Lavishing Recognition

         Doing Performance Reviews

         Encouraging Professional Activity

    Managing Conflict

    Creating Work-Life Balance

    Leveraging Morale Events (Fun with a Purpose)

    Taking Care of Yourself

         Improving as a Manager

    Performance Reviews

    Rallying the Troops

    UX Team Lunches: Creating Team Traditions

    Growing Performance and Careers

Chapter 8 Transforming the Organization

    ROI

         Traditional Perspective

         Rethinking the Argument

         A Strategy Perspective

    Positioning in the UX Process Maturity Model

         Assessing Maturity

    Developing the Portfolio of Work

         Getting into a Project

    Standardization and Reuse

         External Standards

    Scaling Up and Design Thinking

         Training Others

    Is Usability ROI Still Relevant? Was It Ever?

    Defining Your Value to the Organization

    Successful Collaboration Across the Organization

    Developing a Portfolio of Work

Chapter 9 Evangelizing UX

    Communication Plan

    Group Branding

    Managing Up

    Books to Share with Senior Managers

    Corporate Community Building

    Managing Up: It’s About Speaking Their Language and Taking Their Perspective

Chapter 10 Conclusion

    Leadership

    Should You Be Managing?

    A Final Comment

    Management Observations

Appendix

    Professional Society Conferences

    Other Recommended Management Books

         Nelson Soken Recommendations

    Additional Helpful Resources

References

Index