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The Agile & Lean UX News #99

Welcome to issue #99 of the Agile and Lean UX News. Curated by Quietstars and delivered to your inbox. Occasionally.

Has it been five years since issue #1 already? To celebrate issue #100 we will give away a book to five random subscribers next issue. The winners will be able to pick their book from a shortlist of great product and UX books we’ll be tweeting about over the next two weeks. Keep an eye on #AgileLeanUXNews.

We’d also love to hear what you’ve got out of the newsletter over the years — either tweet about it or drop us an email!

Articles of Note


Pre Product/Market Fit Product Teams: the Discovery-Delivery Dizziness

by Guilherme Cavalcanti (@guiocavalcanti)

“The discovery-delivery dizziness is a tension that comes up in pre product/market fit teams. Not being clear on what state the team members are, in my experience, is the primary cause of misusing tools, methodologies or ways of working. Seek skeptic people with right product intuition (right personal traits), set up discovery initiatives and give the team space and tools to hack their way to the right product. Ask the right questions and collaborate with them. The answers will come up.”

Agile Journey Mapping with Empathy

by Richa Prajapati (@RichaPraja)

“I am going to describe how we at Salesforce Analytics used agile journey mapping with empathy to find user experience opportunities, the challenges we faced, and some of the frameworks and best practices we discovered along the way. Note that journey mapping involves a lot of collaboration with your stakeholders from the beginning until long after the study is completed.”

A Recap: Tips & Techniques For Lean Prototyping in Design Sprints and More

by Mel Hambarsoomian

“Prototyping and user testing help us validate solutions quickly and at a relatively low cost. We prototype for internal reasons too. In a design sprint, you need to create a shared understanding. It’s how you communicate your ideas internally … It can be a proof of concept for yourself.”

Exploratory Research: How to Use It To Drive Product Development

by Jillian Wells

“Besides eliminating inefficient meetings, exploratory research has also shortened our product development timelines. Product teams sometimes forgo exploratory research because they fear it might slow things down and push out launches. But more often than not, we’ve seen 2-3 weeks of research upfront saves weeks of product development down the line. Not only does the research cut down on the number of meetings needed to get teams aligned, it gives our team more certainty that the solution they’ve developed will actually be effective.”

Tools in the Basement

by Brad Frost (@brad_frost)

“By building our design systems through the lens of real projects, we’re not just making user scenarios up or building UI components in the abstract. By combining the atomic design mental model with pilot projects, we’re able to ensure the reusable components we create are born of real user and business needs.”

Worth Another Read


Case Study: UX, Design, and Food on the Table

by Laura Klein (@lauraklein)

“By the end of the iterations and tests, every single one of the users liked the new version better than the old, and we had a very good idea why. Did we make it perfect? No. Perfection takes an awful lot of time and too often fails to be perfect for the intended users. Instead, we identified several areas we'd like to optimize and iterate on going forward. But we also decided that it was better to release a very good version and continue improving it, rather than aim for absolute perfection and never get it out the door.”

UX London Redux

This May’s UX London conference had some excellent sessions as always. We think you’ll find these of especial interest:

The other sessions are also worth a look.

Upcoming Events

Agile2018, 6-10 August, San Diego

Incorporating UX in Agile: Best Practices Roundtable, 8 August, Tempe

Lean Innovation Masterclass, 14 August, Atlanta

UX Week, 21-24 August, San Francisco

User Research Huddle: Analyse This!, 22 August, London

Using Analytics To Set Your Product Strategy, 23 August, Mountain View

UX Australia, 28-31 August, Melbourne

Refresh 2018, 7 September, Tallinn

Responsive Conference 2018, 24-25 September, New York

Product Innovation Summit, 27-28 September, Boston

EuroIA, 27-29 September, Dublin

Industry, 1-3 October, Ohio

Business of Software USA, 1-3 October, Boston

Global Scrum Gathering, 8-10 October, London

The Advanced Lean Startup Workshop, 11-12 October, Paris

MWUX, 11-13 October, Chicago

Agilia Budapest, 15-17 October, Budapest

World Usability Congress, 17-18 October, Graz

Leading the Product, 18 October, Melbourne

Mind the Product, 18-19 October, London

Leading the Product, 23 October, Sydney

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

DesignOps Summit, 7-9 November, New York

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.

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

If you want to meet us in person we’ll be presenting at the Scrum Gathering London in October, and 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”.)

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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