Politics of Usability


A three-day team training/workshop event which leaves you with a clear strategy for how to position usability services within your organization, who to offer them to, and how to show success. Valuable to groups starting out in usability work and also to established teams who want to reach the next level.

  • Assessment of where your team is today and a road map for team and individual growth
  • Techniques for prioritizing and dealing with all types of product teams
  • Strategies for meeting increasing demand
  • Ways to show success and enjoy your job (also serves as a great team-building exercise)


The focus is to create a viable strategy for supporting each product that the user experience (UX) team works with.  These workshop/classes are aimed at giving the group the confidence they need to make the work happen.

We create the user experience strategy as a group, working through each stage by first defining and explaining terms in classroom style sessions, then discussing how what we have learned applies in your unique situation, before deciding on a course of action.

We round out the team’s usability toolkit so that the strategies we create are achievable. We take the first steps towards creating resources for helping teams you can’t engage with, and we work out how best to promote the team within the organization.


The three day class includes the following elements:

Day 1: Integrating with development teams

This day ensures that team members are thinking the right way about their role in the organization. By using the project lifecycle as a framework for the day, we will cover the politics of usability as we talk through the tools.

  • Usability Maturity Model
  • Integrating usability into project methodologies
  • Marketing user experience, building credibility, influencing without authority
  • Working with teams, including the ungrateful ones
  • Working with vendors
  • Politics and getting things done – how to become part of the process

We’ll identify areas for change by comparing how your company works now with other organizations which have successfully integrated UX work into the development lifecycle.

Day 2: Strategy

We list the elements which go into creating a successful strategy and the team works out how best to integrate into the organization. Take advantage of our experience as we show you which strategies are most likely to work for your team in your organization.

  • What role does the team want? (team structure, interaction style)
  • How to keep on top of the work – the team triage game
  • Saying “No” and what to offer instead when you can’t get involved
  • Showing your value (metrics to demonstrate impact)
  • Communicating UX across the organization

As an additional benefit, you can re-apply the process that we use during this day yourselves each time you start working with a new team. Doing so will ensure that you consider the elements which are important for each development team you work with so that you can have the most impact with that group.

Day 3: Methods and techniques

This day ensures that the team has knowledge of the usability methods and data reporting techniques that they will need to implement the strategy. Using a mixture of classroom and practical style training we cover several guerilla/fast/discount usability techniques.

  • Usability methods in the lifecycle
  • Guerilla methods – fast turn-around variations on traditional methods
  • Other tools
  • Methods that don’t require participants
  • Reporting results – data display methods to get buy-in
  • Stuff to give to teams that you can’t work with

This day also prepares the team for the realities of “selling” usability and user experience within the organization.

Price: US$ 27,000 – see our Pricing page for more information.
Duration: 3 days (minor pre-work for organizer)
Prerequisites: None.

Next steps

To discuss how this highly interactive workshop can benefit your group, and to customize the syllabus to your needs, talk to us by e-mail: info@ [this site’s domain]