How to be a great UX leader – part four: Influence and create drastic movement in your organization
Welcome to our four-part guide on how to become a great UX research leader, where we’ll teach you how to deepen your understanding of users and data, and promote the value of user research throughout your organization.
This week: create drastic UX research movement in your organization by creating a community of ambassadors.
To be a great UX research leader, you need to be empowered to influence, educate and mentor people.
You need the ability to scale and take your UX research practice to the highest level possible.
You need to create a drastic movement internally that values UX research.
Does this sound like a pipe dream? It’s not! Here’s how you can create drastic movement in your organization.
Create a UX research ‘community of ambassadors’
Connect with allies from across your organization–customer service, digital program, journey owners, product management, IT/developers, marketing, branding, customer experience, analytics, HR, etc.
Encourage your allies to join and take part of the movement by making it clear what’s in it for them:
- Owning a leadership role in a practice that benefits the organization
- Recognition for going above and beyond to improve the customer experience and satisfaction overall, and improve employee satisfaction score.
Form a community of five to ten evangelists or ambassadors, each from a different department within the organization.
Lead the community in monthly meetings to collaborate and come up with ideas to host UX research events.
Work with your ambassadors to set up a cadence of fixed dates and times for UX-related events. Schedule them on a monthly basis for the next six to twelve months. Ambassadors are responsible for promoting the events within their own departments and sending invites.
Events can be a ‘lunch and learn’ series where each ambassador presents a topic.
Some possible topics could be:
- A case study
- UX research trends
- Customer segments
- Digital personas that the organization should reference in all they do
- Watching videos of customers using your website – you can bill this as a ‘horror movie’!
You can even ask your UX vendor partners to volunteer to do a webinar on common topics of interest. Vendor partners will love the opportunity to participate.
Invite guest speakers as well. For example, a business stakeholder can speak about the value of UX research and how it improved key performance indicators. Trust me, business stakeholders love to talk about their accomplishments, too!
After each event, meet with your stakeholders to debrief, sharing what went well and what could be improved for future events.
What to expect:
Brace yourself: executives will hear about these events and want to know more. This may result in a C-suite executive becoming a sponsor, leading to their support and promotion of the movement as well. They may get involved and mentor ambassadors, or even fund specific events.
Yes, it’s possible. I’ve seen it happen it before. Here’s an example event from EMEA customer Shop Direct: https://www.shopdirect.com/ux-insights/
All executives care about their customers’ experience, satisfaction and engagement with the company’s products. They know the high impact of a satisfied customer on the bottom line and business ROI.
Executives also care about educating employees on the value of becoming a customer-centric organization. They care about increasing employees’ exposure to the value of UX research, which over time increases the UX maturity of the entire organization.
So just sit back and watch the floodgate of UX research requests open.
Identify your allies in departments across the organization, and invite them to join your UX community of ambassadors.
Also find local meet-up groups or events to attend or at which you can present as a team.
Reach out to your Research Partner at UserZoom to discuss. We will be happy to support you during this impactful journey.
And if you missed the previous parts of this series, check them out below:
Part 3) Engage your stakeholders
Currently managing the Research Partner Team in NAM, Rima is an experienced CX/UX Strategist, who focuses on helping businesses achieve the maximum return on every customer interaction. Rima has 18 years of stellar achievement in UX leadership and execution. She spent nearly two decades at Citigroup, where she strategically navigated a complex global structure and proved the value of UX insights, which resulted in growing the UX Research budget from $30K – $3 MI. Rima is a previous customer of UserZoom, she believes in the company’s strategy and vision, and joined the company in 2017 to counsel and empower UX professionals to thrive and achieve tangible results.