The event was described as the first and largest conference in its region. Also, I was told it was the first international user experience conference in Turkey. The site also lists the stats as there were 341 attendees, 153 companies and 7 countries represented.
This experience was amazing. I was flown to iItanbul to meet four other talented UX professionals. I still keep in touch with Matt Lee and Natasha Levitan. We continue to connect about our roles and careers as they have evolved through the years.
For the talk, I shared a little bit about me and what I love to do. Then I was able to share publicly share a glimpse of one of the most impactful pieces of work our team at Microsoft has done to date. The corporate vice president of our group at the time decided to pull together new team. Our team was called SKYPE X. I shared the team set up which was made up of several execs and senior leaders across our group. We were asked to figure out “What is next for Skype?” As the talk title described this is exactly “How we at Skype deliver design to our executives”
I also shared the Microsoft innovation process we use called BXT (Business, Experience and Technology) also called viability, desirability and feasibility. I continued to share design specific methodologies we conducted such thinking in scenarios based on real users from our ethnography. An important message to drive home was to be inclusive. Our process included everyone at that table from marketing to development to help encourage a shared mission to help solve our users needs.
More important frame works is the shift of thinking from Human computer interactions to Human to Human interactions (HHI). These HHI experiences were defined based on different groups. Which also meant we needed to shift our design needs to address “Groupsona” not a Persona. Each Groupsona had different rules of engagement. Our products needed to build for them.
Take a look at the original slides here:
The origins of this work for Groupsonas helped define many version one of products such as: Microsoft Teams, Skype Next, Surface Hub, OneNote Updates and a new focus on education. Amazing work that I’m still proud of to have been part of.
Here are a few more images capturing the event:
I was also able to enjoy Istanbul for 4 additional days with my partner in tow. (May day in Istanbul is scary, stay in a mall or hotel on that day)