IA Summit 2017 - Interview
Krispian has over 10 years’ experience, working at all stages of the User Experience process—from strategy and conception through production and implementation. She has worked at award-winning agencies and for some of the world’s top brands,. Keen to improve the discipline of User Experience, Krispian is the Information Architecture Instructor at VFS and speaks about UX Strategy at conferences, universities, and within Vancouver’s UX community.
What’s on your IA/UX/Content Strategy “nightstand” reading pile?
Practical Empathy by Indi Young, I was thrilled to find this on audiobook.
Understanding Context by Andrew Hinton
Mapping Experiences by Jim Kalbach
What/ who is your creative muse?
My daughter. She inspires me to be a better person and positive role model.
How did you find IA/UX/Content Strategy? What drew you to it?
As a kid, I was an insatiably curious bookworm and spent a lot of time in the library reading everything about anything. In the early 90s, I read an article in Omni magazine about a futuristic concept called the Internet and I was immediately enraptured, especially at the thought of having the contents of an entire library fit onto a device that could fit into my pocket!
Before the Internet, when I was a young adult, I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. I was really drawn to menu design, so I started my own artistic chalkboard company. The part I liked best organizing different types of foods into a format that was easy to understand and engaging to look at.
When the Internet became mainstream in the mid 90s, I knew this is what I wanted to do with my life. I went to “multimedia” school, where I learned HTML and began working in web / product design for organizations large and small. I’ve never looked back. My career progression has been similar to that of the field of User Experience itself — starting with focusing purely on interface and visual design, then interaction design, then the disciplines of usability and information architecture, and more recently becoming more strategic with user research and service design.
My favourite thing to do these days is to teach UX to others, not only because we need more practitioners of UX to help make the world a better place, but teaching also helps me to learn and grow as a practitioner.
I feel very fortunate to work in UX – it is endlessly fascinating, ever-changing, and the perfect vocation for a curious bookworm.
Who are 5 practitioners that you follow on Twitter?
UX STRAT @uxstrat
Adaptive Path ?@AdaptivePath
What are your favorite tools of the trade? Why?
I agree with Eric Reiss in that people focus too much on tools, but not enough on objectives.
If you could become instantly smarter one one subject, what would that subject be and why?
Here I am all grown up and still trying to figure out how the world works.
How/where do you “start” a project?
The beginning of a project is exciting. There is so much information to consume: prior research, business requirements, stakeholder interviews, technical documents. I love translating all of this into a clear plan of action.
If you could choose a capstone project for your career, what would it be? Why that one?
I’m really proud of the work I did with The NFL and Microsoft, and I enjoyed doing service design projects for the big banks down in Australia, but my favourite projects of all are the ones where the results of my user research prevented an organization from making decisions that would have resulted in poor user experience.
Name an educational resource (book, website, publication, etc) that you turn to regularly?
UIE and the entire Rosenfeld Library
What is one of your guilty pleasures?
As a musician and a prog rock & indie fan, I like to think that I have esoteric, sophisticated musical tastes. In reality, I am a sucker for the music they play at the supermarket.