12 questions for Kathryn, our Head of User Research

Kathryn Davies, Head of User Research at Natural Interaction.

Kathryn is our Head of User Research and she joined in January 2018. We're a nosy bunch and we know you are too so David, our inquisitor extraordinaire, recently sat down to ask her 12 questions.

Here's how the conversation went: 

David : So to honour the tradition of starting at the beginning, what gets you out of bed in the morning?

Kathryn: My daughter. Followed by tea (me) and milk (her).

DC: How long have you worked in UX?

KD: 10 years. I started out as a junior UX consultant in London.

DC: What is your favourite thing about your job?

KD: Definitely stakeholder interviews and exploratory research. I love learning about different companies, processes, technologies and industries, and seeing what goes on under the bonnet - all of the texture that underpins UX design.

DC: How would you describe your job to a child?

KD: I used to tell people that I ‘coloured in the internet’, but I that isn’t really true any more. I guess, much like a child, it’s actually asking ‘Why’ repeatedly and not taking no for an answer.

DC: Strangest work-related experience? (present or previous role)

KD: There was one time fairly early on in my career when I had to pretend I wanted to be a cab driver, in order to get a covert peek at the application forms. I was dispatched to the carriage office, effectively a meeting house for drivers. I knew it wasn’t my world, and such was the cabbies disbelief that a nervous stuttering kid in their early 20s had any hope of being a cabbie, I very nearly left empty handed.

DC: Who has been your favourite client to work with?

KD: Obviously, they have all been wonderful, apart from the ones who haven’t. Honestly though, I don’t think I’ve had a bad one. Bad moments, yes, but not bad clients. If I had to pick one, Fuller's simply for the scope of their vision.

DC:  What has been your favourite project to work on?

KD: My government services projects were great. The level of detail, in research and planning made them very enjoyable to me. I love getting lost in the small matters - it's those aspects which can make or break a project.

Kathryn Davies, Head of User Research at Natural Interaction.
Kat speaking at our UCD Bristol meet up event

DC: What’s your biggest achievement to date, personal or professional?

KD: I'm not very good at achievements - I'm always looking around for the next thing. Having said that, I’m in a job with a good work/life balance in a career that suits my skills and interests. I consider than an achievement in itself really.

DC: What’s the most recent app you downloaded on your phone?

KD: Duolingo, although not for the first time. I have a vague idea that I should learn welsh, if only so my children aren’t taught a language I can’t understand.

DC: What technological breakthrough would you like to see within the next few years?

KD: Let’s just focus on getting wifi working properly on trains before we start worrying about anything else.

DC: Favourite blog?

KD: I only really read one blog, The Spike. It gives me ideas about how to dress myself and feed my family and other things I really should have got the hang of by now.

DC: And finally, if I gave you £10,000 right now what would you spend it on?

KD: Why are you giving me £10,000?

Benton reading a blog post

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