UXLX in Lisbon

The capital of Portugal and one of the oldest cities in the world. From June 4–6 my colleagues and I were there to attend a user experience conference, filled with workshops and talks from a variety of perspectives. The first two days consisted of two workshops each day. The last day was filled with inspiring talks by Mike Monteiro, Kate Rutter and Jared Spool amongst others.

To sum it up, it was a great hands-on conference, without that artistic feel of it. Just the kind of conference I expected and hoped for. Real tools and real cases. Nothing like this-is-good-looking-but-nothing-more kind of conference. There were times when anxiety visited me during some of the lightening talks, especially when Mike Monteiro talked about how designers destroyed the world. Today, a few days after, I feel a bit more rich on knowledge and hope to have this feeling for a long time. Here's a summary of the workshops I attended.

“The Workshop Workshop” with Ross Unger

Besides winning a book for the best group name; The Team Team, we used tools to facilitate a super-slim workshop. From the importance of planning and agendas, to the qualities of a facilitator and how to help a group keep track and move forward in a process.

“Designing with lean UX” with Kate Rutter

Kate gave us tools to use Lean Startup principles with fun methods. The workshop contained a few steps to make a low-fi product concept by envision, experiment and then share it with the rest of the group. By using this methods, it was quite easy to understand if the product concept would make it or not. This is something we usually do at my work place, but it's always nice to repeat knowledge.

“From UX Designer to Product Leader” with Bill DeRouchey

“Don't think of it like a UX career. It changes over time, think more of it like a skill, approach or philosophy.”

Bill showed in his workshop the importance of universal skills rather than having specific UX skills. The key is to practice owning that product before you actually get that big promotion. I think this one was the best and gave me the most out of the whole conference.

“Brand-Driven Content Strategy” with Margot Bloomstein

The importance of defining why a client needs a blog and how your using your blog is very important in terms of content strategy. Megan introduced us to a process where the client invest a lot in time and work in themselves, defines the content strategy, that is later used to define a message architecture. Loads of inspiring examples throughout the presentation in combination with hands-on exercises. We also got a chance to see our colleague Giovanni as a CEO for a multinational bank. Let’s just say we’re all hoping Gio will stay at Nansen.