Design research & visual storytelling

Design research & visual storytelling

Why design research?

I believe designers and businesses miss opportunities by making assumptions about their end users.

I also believe successful organisations start with their customers’ problems, then look for the solution, not the other way around.

These are the reasons I believe and specialise in user centred design and design research.

Who, how, why …and so what?

While traditional market research collects opinions and listens to what people say – I go deeper into your customers’ context to get to ‘the why’ behind how people actually behave with and think about your product, uncovering what really matters to them.

…because it’s only when you understand their needs you can design your product to add value where it counts.


Selected articles from Nick’s UXNZ blog:

Ethno unpacked – a design researcher’s toolkit.

Every minute spent with a customer is valuable, so when I’m visiting homes or workplaces during an ethnography I can’t afford to be distracted by practicalities like recording equipment and timings.

I’ve arrived at a ‘toolkit’ of things in my backpack, so when I pull up at the customer’s house the ‘roadie’ can take a back-seat and let me get on with capturing the insights:

So… what’s in a research roadie’s backpack?…

Games people play during user research.


A couple of universal truths stand in the way of discovering what people actually think and do:

What people do and what people say are rarely the same.

Equally, what people think, and what they say are very different.

Annoyingly, but reliably, these rear their heads during customer interviews and ethnographic studies – the two main methods I use to gain insights from people.

It’s amazing how the truth comes to the surface with some simple card games…