User research war stories

Steve Portigal

Stories make the world go round. As people who do user research, we love stories. At its simplest, our job is to gather stories and to retell them. War stories about contextual user research and the inevitable mishaps that ensue are in turn bizarre, comic, tragic, and generally astonishing.

In this DesignTalk, Steve Portigal shares some of the best stories from his book Doorbells, Danger, and Dead Batteries, examining the patterns and lessons they reveal. For a practice that isn’t always well understood or trusted, there’s pressure to only speak to the successes. But examining the human messiness of this work can help develop our skills and our community. Steve’s collection of stories fills a longstanding need for the design and research community—sharing what can go wrong in the real world.
Thanks, You've unlocked the video! Watch Now

Design Better. Faster. Together.

The world's leading prototyping, collaboration & workflow platform

Get Started Free

Unlock User research war stories

Enter email to unlock this video


Steve Portigal

Steve Portigal helps companies think and act strategically when innovating with user insights. Based outside of San Francisco, he is principal of Portigal Consulting, and the author of 2 books: The classic Interviewing Users: How To Uncover Compelling Insights and the new Doorbells, Danger, and Dead Batteries: User Research War Stories. He's also the host of the Dollars to Donuts podcast, where he interviews people who lead user research in their organizations.

Follow on Twitter and My Site


See our other DesignTalks

See all Design Talks