Column: Discovery

UXmatters has published 12 editions of the column Discovery.

Top 3 Trending Discovery Columns

  1. 7 Questions to Ask Users Early in the Product Lifecycle


    Insights from UX research

    A column by Michael Morgan
    March 20, 2018

    Whether you’re a UX designer, product stakeholder, or some other kind of curious-minded product professional, you need to know what makes your users tick. My new column Discovery: Insights from UX research is about unearthing what is already there—just waiting for a UX researcher to discover it.

    In Discovery, I’ll explore various approaches to gaining insights about your users by employing UX-research methods early in the product-development process. UX research can help you understand what would make your users’ lives easier.

    When you’re asking questions during user-research interviews, the key to getting answers that are not tainted by bias depends on what the question is and how you ask it. Taking the time and thought to pose constructive, reflective questions, ensures that participants can provide the information you need to portray an accurate picture of the customer narrative. Encourage participants to take the time to reflect on your questions and ask you for clarification when necessary. Read More

  2. Popular Excuses for Not Doing Exploratory Research and How to Overcome Them


    Insights from UX research

    A column by Michael Morgan
    January 20, 2020

    At your company, what percentage of your time is spent doing evaluative studies—for example, usability testing or expert reviews—versus formative, early-phase research, using such approaches as contextual inquiry or low-fidelity prototype testing?

    If you’re spending significantly more time evaluating the usability of your existing applications and finding and fixing problems, there’s a good chance your firm is underinvesting in exploratory research.

    The main purpose of exploratory research is to discover and understand how your clients are using your existing products and identify their painpoints and challenges within their current context. It’s also about understanding how prospective buyers are using similar products to get their work done today. Read More

  3. Forgetting to Breathe: Mindful User Research


    Insights from UX research

    A column by Michael Morgan
    April 6, 2020

    “Thus we are sucked away into the future—and we are incapable of actually living one minute of life.”—Thich Nhat Hanh

    It’s your last research session in a long day filled with hours of listening to participants talk about their complex systems. Their gripes start to blend together. One person’s complaints about gluing together their data files from multiple systems start to sound just like the difficulties of another participant whose system froze when he tried to click Print.

    Fortunately, you have recordings to fall back on. Perfect concentration is impossible. You may forget to listen. But if you forget to breathe and be alive in the moment, you may succumb to an awkward silence, while a participant swigs some water between rants. Meditation guru Thich Nhat Hanh says, “It is only in an active and demanding situation that mindfulness really becomes a challenge.” Read More

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