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Lean UX: Designing Great Products with Agile Teams Hardcover – October 20, 2016
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From the Publisher
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|Find further titles in this series||Iterate from Plan A to a Plan That Works||Use Data to Build a Better Startup Faster||How High Performance Organizations Innovate at Scale||Faster, Smarter User Experience Research and Design||Building Products Your Customers Will Buy||Creating Dynamic Brands to Generate Conversion|
About the Author
Jeff Gothelf is a designer & Agile practitioner. He is a leading voice on the topics of Agile UX & Lean UX and a highly sought-after international speaker. He is Principal in Neo's New York City office. Previously, Jeff has led teams at TheLadders, Publicis Modem, WebTrends, Fidelity, & AOL.
Josh Seiden has been creating great technology products for more than 20 years. A UX design leader, Josh has worked in hardware and software, consumer and enterprise, mobile, web, and desktop. He is Principal at Neo and, prior to that role, he was head of product design at Wall Street innovator Liquidnet, and lead pioneering interaction design teams at Cooper. He is a founder and past president of the Interaction Design Association.
Top customer reviews
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This is a thin and terse book that describes how the lean movement's philosophy applies to UX design. All the elements are there: fast interactions with a willingness to fail if something can be learned from the experience, focus on who you are designing for and why they want it, creating hypotheses about important assumptions that are rigorously but quickly tested, working in cross-functional teams. A person who wants to dive completely into the approach might want to refer to the other books in the series that started with The Lean Startup by Ries. However, designing the look of an application and the flow of how it is used is not quite the same as designing the software that runs behind it. This book focuses on the techniques characteristic to UX design.
The lean approach is agile, but is not identical with many of the name-brand agile processes common today. There is a chapter that discusses how Lean UX can be done within a Scrum team, but other chapters have much more of a Kanban feel to them. There is a short discussion of the issues involved in shifting an organization to using this approach.
This is not your standard 800-page brick that takes 100 pages to tell you how to install the software. It introduces you to the mindset, the big ideas, but then leaves you to work out how they apply to your situation. Its aim is to provide a mental toolkit rather than an exhaustive how-to, and in this it succeeds.
For teams focused on client-side software such as mobile apps, there's a lot of good information here to help you get the most out of lean/agile
approach quickly. In some respects, these teams have an easier implementation cycle due to the way mobile works and the screen size limitations force a UX-centric approach in order to be successful. For groups in web or back-end technologies, it will take an agile coach or strong Product Owner to guide them to the right path.
Either way, the resources here are invaluable and it's such a fast read that the whole dev team can comfortably read the relevant chapters for their role. In implementing agile, this will be a core resource that you will refer to repeatedly.
Lean UX assumes the company can test its software with end users every one or two weeks and that it's realistic for your company to split UX development between fully functional groups of about 10 people. Lean UX will not work for your company if the team is too large or software cannot be tested and altered frequently, such as with embedded software or software that requires a long development cycle.
For the most part the book explains all terms and concepts adequately but readers familiar with Lean Startup, Agile development and Design Thinking will get through it faster. I personally found chapter seven confusing because it's full of Agile jargon and I have no experience with Agile, but developers will find it useful for addressing conflicts between Agile and Lean UX.
Since this book is instructional in nature two questions must be answered: does the process work, and is it complete and easy to understand?
While this book is worth reading its lack of case studies is a problem. The trouble is that while section two describes the entire process the authors make it clear every team's implementation of Lean UX will be unique. Case studies across multiple industries would provide the reader with better guidance in addressing the obstacles unique to their team. However, there are only four full case studies in the last chapter along with several examples of teams implementing specific steps in the development process.
I assume the authors wanted to make the book short and at 172 pages they succeeded but they could have added an appendix with more case studies to reduce reading time while providing team leaders with enough concrete examples to work out the fine details of their situation.