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The Agile & Lean UX News #103

Welcome to issue #103 of the Agile and Lean UX News. Curated by Quietstars and delivered to your inbox. Occasionally. As the leaves start to fall and there’s a chill in the air, we hope we have something for you to brighten up your autumn.

Articles of Note


The System Always Kicks Back

by Kyle Peatt (@kpeatt)

“Our most productive 3 months were the ones with an impossible deadline. The best thing you can do for your system is put imperfect things inside it. Release and test constantly. Get over the idea that everyone is relying on you to be perfect. And encourage contribution by enabling those with less time to feel like they’re just as capable and confident. Start by shipping something good — then make it great.”

100% of the Team in a Mob For 12 Months — Taking Mob Programming a Couple of Steps Further

by Lea Kovac Beckman (@leakovac)

“The competence we need is constantly present. Always ready to respond or act. No handoffs are needed between team roles, which for me as UX designer has always been the most frustrating part. Expectations become clear when everyone takes part the entire journey. The first spontaneous reaction after working in a mob is a sense of 100% understanding of the problem or task we are working on. The mob support cooperation. It’s not I, It’s we who solved this.”

Are Two Pairs of Eyes Better Than One? A Comparison of Concurrent Think- Aloud and Co-Participation Methods in Usability Testing

by Obead Alhadreti & Pam Mayhew

“The co-participation method seems to be an appropriate method for those usability practitioners who seek to find a high quantity of problems at low severity levels or feel that it is vital that the participants in their usability test experience their participation as pleasantly as possible. Otherwise the classical method seems to be a more cost-effective method as it has the same ability to reveal high-severity problems, requires less time and effort from the evaluator, and involves rewarding one participant per test session instead of two.”

Outcome-Based Service Mapping

by Marie Cheung

“I was on a mission to help our teams design better services by shifting the focus from only solving the given brief to helping our users meet their outcomes sooner. To remember to consider the citizen, even if we are building internal systems. We could easily end up mapping a current journey map, highlighting pain points and just end up making only minor tweaks to improve the process … I wanted to create a simple framework that would enable anyone to start thinking and working in this way and to take others along with them in the journey of making our services more user-centred.”

Skip User Research Unless You’re Doing It Right — Seriously

by Joe Munko (@insightsmunko)

“We’ll always have to deal with requests to make our research faster, but once you or your user research team has achieved terminal velocity with any given method, stop trying to speed it up. Instead, focus on capturing each insight, leveling it up to organizational knowledge, and applying that learning in the future … Timeless research is really about building long-term organizational knowledge and curating what you’ve already learned.”

Worth Another Read


Involving Stakeholders in User Testing

by Jakob Nielsen

“Inviting executives to attend user testing has many of the same benefits. They're more likely to prioritize user experience after experiencing users. And they're less likely to believe bogus ad-agency claims that souped-up designs "promote the brand" when they've heard how harshly their paying customers curse such designs. Finally, when it comes time to allocate next year's budget, you can't help but get more if management understands what you do — which they will because live user sessions lodge themselves so firmly in the mind.”

INDUSTRY Europe 2018 Redux

Industry Europe 2018 had some thought provoking sessions. We think you will find these of especial interest.

If you like these why not check out the other session videos.

Upcoming Events

Agilia Budapest, 15-17 October, Budapest

World Usability Congress, 17-18 October, Graz

Collaboration In Different Worlds, 18 October, New York

Leading the Product, 18 October, Melbourne

Mind the Product, 18-19 October, London

Leading the Product, 23 October, Sydney

How to Achieve Product-Market Fit, 24 October, San Francisco

Lean Thinking: Applying Lean Now, 6 November, London

Agile in the City: Bristol, 7-9 November, Bristol (10% off with code Adrian)

DesignOps Summit, 7-9 November, New York

Leveraging Lean UX To Lead Successful Agile Design Teams, 12 November, Boston

Measuring Actionable Metrics, 5 December, New York

We’re running one more public workshop on user story mapping in October as part of Mind the Product London. See our workshops page for more details (if you want to run this workshop inside your company drop us a line at

Adrian will also be presenting at Agile in the City: Bristol in November. Do come along and say hello (you can get 10% of Agile in the City: Bristol tickets with the code “Adrian”.)

Quietstars help teams improve with tactical workshops, team coaching and personal coaching. Think we can help your product development teams? Have a question? Not sure where to begin? Visit to find out.

If you can’t get the support & advice you need within your org our team coaching and our 1-on-1 remote personal coaching sessions can help.

Have something that you think should be in this newsletter? Want to tell us what sucked or rocked about this issue? Drop us a line at

Until next time. Be excellent to each other.

Kathryn (too busy for twitter) & Adrian (@adrianh)

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