Beyond Users

Beyond Users
Understand business. Become a better designer.

#41- Learn 10 Business Models in 10 Minutes
Nov 19 • 14 min
In this episode, we share a lesson from the d.MBA course. In this lesson, which is a part of the Business Models module, we introduce ten famous business model patterns. We go through their advantages, disadvantages, and explain when to use them. If you…
40- Testing Business Ideas with David Bland
Nov 5 • 42 min
David J Bland is the founder of Precoil to help companies find product-market fit using lean startup, design thinking, and business model innovation. David has helped validate new products and businesses at companies such as GE, Toyota, Adobe, HP, Behr…
39 - Math is a prototyping tool
Oct 23 • 12 min
Designers are used to using prototypes to test usability and desirability. You put a wireframe in front of a user and you can quickly learn if they like (or know how to use) something. What if we could do the same for viability? Well, we can. With math.…
38 - Hey designer, be more strategic!
Oct 9 • 11 min
Have you ever been told to be more strategic? What does it mean though? Strategy, unfortunately, has different meanings for different people. It is one of the most widely misunderstood concepts despite being crucial to the success of business and design.…
37- Business designers’ view on design research
Sep 24 • 46 min
Trent and Alen discuss the importance of design research and desktop research from the perspective of business designers. In this episode, we are covering: - conducting looking-ins (internal interviews) and looking-outs (customers and outside…
36- Jason Barron - A designer with an MBA
Sep 4 • 39 min
Jason is an author of The Visual MBA, a great book explaining all key business school concepts and frameworks through illustrations. It’s a perfect book for all designers who want to grasp basic business concepts in a language that we are well versed in -…
35- How product strategies affect design work? (mini d.MBA)
Aug 15 • 14 min
Imagine working on the iPhone before its release in 2007. Imagine the number of design decisions to be made. No one knew if this is going to be successful. Now, imagine working on the iPhone in 2019. Now, the level of design work is completely different,…
34- Why you shouldn’t always listen to customers (mini d.MBA)
Jul 30 • 11 min
Customer is king. Especially to designers. We would do everything for them. We fight for what they want and need. But is that always a good idea? I would argue that it is sometimes self-destructive. That it is against what customers actually want. Find…
33- Six Business Design Mindsets
Jul 23 • 15 min
This week, I published the Business Design Guide, which introduces business design as a design discipline. In this episode, I present the outline of the guide and share a few stories from my career that led me to write this guide. I took one topic from…
32- John Oswald @Method - Business Design 101
Jul 16 • 59 min
John Oswald is a business design pioneer. He was the first business designer at fjord where he defined its role and built the team. He is currently a managing director at a strategic design consultancy Method London. With John, we discussed: - the early…
31- How to design for valuable customers?
Jul 9 • 9 min
Imagine you are running a hotel. Who would you rather have as a customer? High value but one-time visitor or an average customer who will keep coming back for many years? It depends, right? Lifetime Value (LTV) is a concept that can help us determine the…
30- Business costs are a design decision (mini d.MBA episode)
Jul 2 • 11 min
When you open a yoga studio, will you hire yoga instructor full-time or will you find a contractor? Will you sign a one year lease for your studio that you can equip the way you want or will you try to rent a pop-up store that gives you more flexibility?…
29- The hidden costs that govern our business (and life)
Jun 25 • 10 min
In the second mini d.MBA episode, we look at two related business concepts: - Opportunity Costs - and Return on Investment (ROI) If you take a year off from work and take do an MBA, this doesn’t just cost you $100k. During that same year, you could be…
28 - Why money in the bank is not just sexy but healthy
Jun 18 • 11 min
This is an experimental episode where I present one business concept and explain its relevancy for designers work. In the first mini d.MBA episode, I talked about cash flow and its importance. It is one of the most common reasons companies go out of…
27- Misaligned incentives, sustainable brands, rightsizing, and corporate innovation (Business Design Jam 3)
Jun 4 • 55 min
The Business Design Jam is back. In the third session, David Schmidt, a business design partner at United Peers, and I discuss four business design topics: - how misaligned incentives fundamentally hurt user experience across different industries and what…
26- Matic Pelcl @Celtra - How to design for scalability
May 14 • 52 min
Matic Pelcl is a director of product at Celtra, a creative management platform for digital advertising. Matic has gone through the experience of starting as a junior designer to having the proverbial seat at the table today. In this episode, we spoke…
25 - Good design is good business
Apr 24 • 22 min
Watch the video version of the talk. Recently, I gave a talk titled “Good design is good business” at the UX/UI Meetup Berlin. I presented the synthesis of my research on the heritage and purpose of design. The…
24 - Jules Ehrhardt @FKTRY - Why “paid for time” is the biggest problem of the creative industry (and what is the alternative)
Apr 9 • 83 min
Jules Erhardt is the founder of FKTRY, a creative capital studio aimed at revolutionizing how creatives get paid. Jules was previously an owner of USTWO, the pioneer studio that kicked off the digital product studio trend. Jules left USTWO couple of years…
23- Tulio Jarocki @Blinkist - Can design process be distilled into a checklist?
Mar 26 • 53 min
Tulio Jarocki is a product designer at Blinkist, a subscription service that summarizes non-fiction books so they can be consumed in just 15 minutes. The company has over 2500 books in its database, more than 6 million customers, and it has raised over…
22- Mackey Saturday - Business advice from a designer who created logos for Instagram, Oculus and Unsplash
Mar 13 • 50 min
Mackey Saturday is a world-renown graphic designer who created visual identities for some of the most famous brands of our time: Instagram, Oculus, Luxe and recently also Unsplash. He is currently running a brand agency based in New York City.
21- How category design can help you create a dominant product (Dave Peterson @Play Bigger)
Jan 22 • 51 min
Dave is a co-founder and Partner at Play Bigger Advisors, a consulting firm that coined the term category design and is advising companies on how to create and own new categories of products. They recently also published a book also called Play Bigger…
20- Seven things every designer should know about business
Dec 18, 2018 • 47 min
A few weeks back, I published the guide for designers who want to learn more about business. As the title already suggests, it covers seven most important business skills for designers. I decided to turn this guide into a podcast for those of you who…
19- How Jonathan almost bankrupted AJ&Smart (Business Design Jam 2)
Nov 28, 2018 • 49 min
The second episode of Business Design Jam was all over the place. But in a good way. With Jonathan, founder of AJ&Smart and co-host of an awesome podcast Product Breakfast Club, we spoke about business models and concepts relevant for designers. We talked…
18- How to design products that create new demand, not merely satisfy existing one (Business Design Jam)
Nov 13, 2018 • 50 min
Business Design Jam (BDJ) is a new format of Beyond Users podcast. It’s a discussion with a fellow business designer about inspiring business design examples and the learnings we can take from them. In the first BDJ, I am joined by David Schmidt, a…
17- Christian Hertlein @N26 - How to organize design teams and promote design culture
Oct 29, 2018 • 50 min
Christian Hertlein is a head of design at N26, the mobile bank startup with over 1 million customers across 17 European markets. A year ago, Christian took over a team of designers in super fast growing startup and started integrating design across…
16- Raffaela Rein @CareerFoundry - How to convince your boss to invest in design?
Oct 17, 2018 • 45 min
Raffaela Rein is a cofounder of the Berlin-based educational startup CareerFoundry, which offers online courses on UX, UI, and web development. Career Foundry is one of the biggest players in this field with more than 10.000 students each year. Raffaela…
15- Amy Bonsall @IDEO - What is venture design?
Oct 3, 2018 • 53 min
Amy Bonsall is a head of venture design at IDEO. She currently works in the Palo Alto studio, leading a team of seven business designers. She is also an instructor in the recent IDEO’s course Designing a Business, which teaches venture design.
14- Taig Mac Carthy @GIK - Blue ocean strategy turned into blue wine
Aug 22, 2018 • 54 min
Taig Mac Carthy is a graphic designer who decided to become an entrepreneur to realize his creative vision. As many designers, he wasn’t fond of business but changed his mind once he started to get more into entrepreneurship. After reading the Blue Ocean…
13- Fabricio Teixeira @UX Collective - How to develop your business empathy
Aug 1, 2018 • 45 min
Fabricio Teixeria is a design director at the digital product agency Work & Co and the founder of the UX Collective, one of the best resources for blog posts, links, and resources for UX designers. In The State of UX in 2018 report, UX Collective editors…
12- Taco Carlier @VanMoof: How this designer disrupted the bike industry with a bike subscription
Jul 11, 2018 • 44 min
Taco Carlier is a co-founder and CEO of VanMoof, an Amsterdam-based company that design and manufactures awesome commuter bikes. Taco is an industrial designer who turned his love for bikes, design, and business into a successful company, which is…
11- François Chartrand @Headspace - How to design user-friendly and business effective cancellation process
Jun 20, 2018 • 48 min
François is senior product designer at Headspace. In 2017 he was asked to design a new cancelation process for Headspace users who decided they no longer want to use the service. At first, François thought this will be a boring task but it quickly turned…
10- Jonathan Courtney @AJ&Smart: UX has become a commodity
Jun 6, 2018 • 45 min
Jonathan Courtney is a co-founder of AJ&Smart, a design sprint agency based in Berlin, which has worked with companies like Lufthansa, Slack, Google, Lyft, Bose etc. He is a host of The Product Breakfast Club podcast with Jake Knapp, author of Design…
9- Ben Burns @The Futur: Teaching designers how to run a creative business
May 9, 2018 • 56 min
Ben Burns is an award-winning designer, a digital director at Blind, brand strategy design consultancy, and COO at The Futur (business education for designers). Ben has a fascinating story that took him from charging 50$ a logo to 100$ an hour and that…
8- Kate Rutter @California College: How to measure and quantify design
Apr 17, 2018 • 59 min
Kate Rutter is an adjunct professor at California College of the Arts. She is a phenomenal UX designer with a strong background in arts and painting, so she sometimes refers to herself as a sketchnoter and graphic recorder. But she also combines her…
7- Steve Vassallo @Foundation Capital: Empathy is killing your product
Apr 3, 2018 • 48 min
Steve Vassallo is a general partner at Foundation Capital (VC firm that invested in Pocket, Netflix, Uber etc.). Prior to that, he worked as a lead designer at IDEO where he worked on a famous Cisco’s 7900 series VoIP phone. He recently published a book…
6- Dr. Sudy Majd @Candid Co: How to do user research rooted in business II
Mar 20, 2018 • 50 min
Sudy Mejd is a customer experience research lead at Candid Co. In the fifth episode, I spoke with Bobby, a colleague of Sudy, and we talked a lot about the way they do user research at Candid Co so it only made sense to dive deeper into these topics with…
5- Bobby Ghoshal @Candid Co: How to do user research that is rooted in business
Mar 6, 2018 • 51 min
Bobby Ghoshal is a co-host of a famous podcast High Resolution and a co-founder of a startup Candid Co. He has more than 15 years of experience in the design world and is a big proponent of bringing design closer to business.
4- Marc Hemeon @Facebook: Design is not art
Feb 28, 2018 • 83 min
Marc Hemeon has a truly impressive CV. He has lead design at YouTube, Google Ventures, Oakley, Digg, Design Inc, Fflick and lately Ease Central. He has been designing since 1996 and is a true veteran in the design community.
3- Joel Califa @GitHub: Business, yes. But users first.
Feb 20, 2018 • 55 min
Joel Califa is a senior product designer at GitHub. He recently wrote a very interesting and popular blog post Subverted Design, which describes what happens if designers forget that their first responsibility is still the user. You can read the full…
2- Joe Gerber @IDEO: Business thinking creates more opportunities, not less
Feb 13, 2018 • 50 min
Joe Gerber is a business designer and a managing director of IDEO CoLAB. After studying biology, taking an MBA, and working as a product manager, he joined IDEO as the first business designer in the New York office.
1- Trent Huon @IDEO: Not thinking about business is bad design
Jan 29, 2018 • 61 min
Trent Huon is a business design director at IDEO Munich. After finishing his MBA, he first worked as a management consultant. As he never went through official design training, he had to learn design on the job when he joined IDEO. We talk about his…