IT Visionaries
IT Visionaries
Oct 14, 2021
The Power of Observation and Function Versus Beauty with Michael Peachey, VP of User Experience at RingCentral
Play • 44 min

Even when trying really hard to please people, it’s difficult. Most people don’t know exactly what they want. And when they do know, they often don’t know how to articulate it. In our personal lives, this can be frustrating, for sure. In the professional world, it can be crippling for a company if they don’t have a pulse on their customers’ wants; but, even more importantly, their needs. Michael Peachey, the VP of User Experience at RingCentral, suggests the best  practice for understanding customers is for a company to enhance their observational capabilities. 

Main Takeaways

  • Using Powers of Observation: To design effectively, a company has to understand how customers are using their products. Surveys help and so do conversations, but observations are best. Tech tools won’t replace the power of human contact, but they can augment observational capacity. Seeing where people place their mouse on screen, for instance, can help strengthen design elements. Observing customers who are struggling with a specific aspect of an app can increase empathy from designers and motivate them to address the issue.
  • Function Versus Beauty: It’s an age-old question as to whether function as opposed to beauty is paramount in design. Function is number one. Without it, products will definitely fail. Beauty is nice but not necessary. The ideal is design that has both function and beauty.
  • BCB Demystified: Everything is interconnected as people who work in the business sector are also consumers. Apps often start in enterprise first. Then employees like them because of the functionality so they take them home and share them and the apps spread among consumers. Consumers also bring apps they like from home back into the business market because they want to use these products at work.

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