This month I begin the next chapter of my career: User Experience Designer at Meebo. After much deliberation, I believe I have made an awesome career move. I am very excited to join Meebo at this time for a few reasons:
1) Meebo has UX as product development focus – Meebo’s is not satisfied with their already achieved success. They want to keep building fantastic user centric products, while improving their currently existing product line. This point was very well emphasized during my interviews with Meebo’s management and UX teams.
2) Meebo is ambitious in a good way – To become not only a company that produces strong UX products, but a User Centered company in every sense of the word. User research works very closely with design. Innovation is a driving force in how Meebo sees its future growth. The revolution of the web is organizing the web around people, which is in its core a user centric principle. As a UX designer, I couldn’t have asked for more.
3) Meebo’s size is perfect for professional growth – Meebo is a well established startup, with significant financial backing and a solid team of extremely talented people. However it is still relatively small compared to the huge tech companies around. You get the best of working at a start up pace while receiving great support from a strong team. My growth will happen as the company and the products I work in grow as well.
I hope I stay at Meebo for years to come. Awesome company. Awesome place to be. Incredible opportunity.
getting here… only with help… so below is my “Oscar” thank you speech
Obviously, I could not have gotten the position and accepted it without lots of folks who were instrumental in supporting me. As was noted on my interview with Onward Search, I had many informational interviews and formal interviews made possible by friends and professional contacts. So here are a few folks I’d like to say thank you to:
- Bentley University‘s Professors, Alumni and students: You guys were instrumental in helping me, teaching me, preparing me and challenging me. Specifically, my professors Bill Gribbons, Chauncey Wilson, Bob Virzi, Greg Almquist, Roland Hubscher and Gary David for the enormous hours of teaching, challenges, encouragement and support. I would also like to thank the following alumni who helped me a tone! Dan Berlin, Tomer Sharon, Michael Hawley, Amy Kidd, Zarla Ludin, Joshua Ledwell, Lisa Renery Handalian, Anne Mamaghani, Michael Ledoux, L Hood, Samantha Scott, Niyati Gupta and Kristina Bosland and Dharmesh Mistry. Lastly, I’d like to thank my team mates in projects at Bentley – Gail Fogel, Catherine Guthy, Martha Ware, Jessika Welch, Taylor Shea, Jon Patrowicz, Lea Refice and Rafael Ravi.
- Bentley’s Design and Usability Center: I had the opportunity of running some amazing projects in web and mobile UX with the DUC folks, and learned a lot throughout the process. Thank you to folks who supervised me (Bill Albert, Lena Dmitrieva, Elizabeth Rosenzweig, Fiona Tranquada) and to my fellow co-workers (Gail Fogel, Jessika Welch, Susan Mercer, Samantha Louras, Denise Graeff, Amanda Davis, Scott Williams, Jeffrey Zundel and Melissa Leach) who helped me grow so much in this past year.
- Essential Design: Essential believed in me, supported me and gave me the chance of working on consulting projects developing extremely interesting consumer products. Their incredible research and design teams work on the convergence of physical and electronic products and do such a fantastic job. I’d like to thank Essential’s UX group (Bill Hartman, David Siedzik and Zarla Ludin) and also the management team (Scott Stropkay and Richard Watson). Fantastic team, fantastic company and fantastic work being done by Essential.
- Former Managers and Mentors at Gordon College and Hult International Business School: namely Silvio Vazquez, Nancy Mering, Britt Carson, Dr. Kaye Cook, Dr. Hitendra Patel and Julie Yao Cooper. Thank you so much for your continuous counsel and support throughout my career. It is deeply appreciated.
-My academic research partners: including companies that supported my research by allowing me to use their products for free to do some pretty interesting UX studies. They are: Affectiva (Dan Bender who was instrumental in the process), SMI Eye-tracking (A. Mark Mento and Stefanie Gehrke) and Pearson Education (Rich Buchliery who is a champion for Usability). And last, but not least, my teammates Amanda Davis and Vignesh Krubai
- Additionally I would like to thank other professional connections, mostly from the Usability Professionals Association, including Jhilmil Jain, Eva Gaumond, Fritz Boyle and Mary Beth Rettger.
- Lastly, my family and friends who put up with me during another very challenging year of working and studying.