Virtual Seminar

The Power of Ad Hoc Personas: Truly Practical Methods to Get Your Organization On the Same Page 

February 2010

60 minutes

  • Guide your execs away from traditional market segments, instead grouping the users by their needs
  • Get all the execs to agree on project priorities, with the help of an old trick: the weighted matrix
  • Create design maps that collect design ideas while pointing out trouble points, all within a few hours.
Topics:

In the Twitter stream during the live event:

  • "There's an entire eComm team at my company who should see this presentation."
  • "Buy the recording of this #uievs. I'm going to listen to it over every time a client asks for personas. Awesome value!"
  • "Really enjoyed the webinar today on Ad Hoc Personas. Lots to think about and still more to act on. I cannot wait!"

 

  • "The sessions were great. We used them to build synergy with the team in areas we want to learn more about, and in some cases, common language to use when discussing things like faceted search." - Caroline Z

When you kick off a project right, everything is much easier. When that doesn't happen, the team pays the price. We've all seen projects where, part way in, a well-intentioned executive derailed the team by changing the direction. To prevent this, we want to put everyone with the power to take the project off course, on to the same course.

Tamara Adlin has developed a great technique to make that alignment happen, which she calls Ad Hoc Personas. Her method, borrowed from research-based personas, creates characters out of information the organization already has at their fingertips. They're inexpensive and easy to create, ensuring a customer focus from the very start of the project.

Because they leverage the solid reputation of more formal persona techniques, it's easy to sell management on them. But don't let their simplicity fool you—Tamara's Ad Hoc Personas are a power tool that every UX professional needs in their repertoire, whether you're tackling a web site, hammering out an intranet, or designing the newest version of a product.

The secret behind Tamara's method is how it pulls out the knowledge already present inside the walls around you. Within your organization, there's already been a lot of talk of who the users are and what they're trying to do. Sales, marketing, support, and development all have their own ideas about who to build for. While there are many conflicts and contradictions in these perspectives, if you piece them together, you get a very rich view of users.

In this 90-minute seminar, Tamara will walk you through her method for implementing these Ad Hoc Personas. She'll show you her trick for extracting everyone's perspectives, by focusing on the users and their needs. You'll see how she makes a tough job quite straight forward: getting senior management and key stakeholders to reach a consensus on which users are most important. And, you'll learn how to key those managers focused on the users as you start to identify the key functional requirements.

  • Guide your execs away from traditional market segments, instead grouping the users by their needs

  • Get all the execs to agree on project priorities, with the help of an old trick: the weighted matrix

  • Create design maps that collect design ideas while pointing out trouble points, all within a few hours.

Tamara's Ad Hoc Personas will help you get your team and your stakeholders on the same page from the very start.