Resources for making the most of your time together.
Meeting someone for the first time – even virtually – can sometimes be a daunting experience. With help from our community we’ve put together this resource to support you in making that initial connection and getting the most out of your pairing.
Questions to break the ice:
- How did you first find out about UX? What got you passionate about it?
- How long have you worked in UX/your current role?
- What path did you take to get into UX?
- What is your work situation? Do you work alone or with a team?
- What tools do you work with?
- What challenges do you face in your job/role/career?
- What do you love most about UX?
- Where do you see yourself in 6 months, a year, in 5 years?
- How did you find out about UXMastery?
- Is this your first peer-mentoring pairing?
- What’s your favourite non-design related hobby?
- Do you have pets?
- Do you listen to any podcasts?
- Have you travelled? Where to?
- What music do you like?
- Of all the places you have lived/visited, what was the one you like the best? Why?
- What do you consider the most important event of your life so far?
- What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally?
- What is your favourite material object?
- Name a hidden talent that you’re proud of
Some ideas for using your time:
Learn something new
If you and your pair have a similar level of experience you could set a topic to explore during the month so you can both learn something new together. Think dark patterns, guerrilla research or accessibility. Write up a plan so that you can fit your catchups around individual research. You might start with a session to define the topic, then do some individual research with planned catchups to brainstorm, perhaps culminating in a final discussion or presentation. Alternatively you could both choose a different topic to research and present so that you teach each other.
Solve a challenge
If solving a problem or attacking a challenge is what you’re hoping to achieve from your pairing it can help to decide on a game plan and set deadlines. Start with an outline of what you are stuck on and provide supporting documentation, imagery etc. Decide how regularly you will Skype/chat/email and diarise times. Decide at the end of each session what needs to be achieved before the next session. Consider whether you work on both people’s challenges in each session or whether you alternate.
Work together on a current task
If you both do similar work perhaps you could learn from each other by comparing your approach to a project that you are already working on. Start by writing an outline of the brief. Include a sentence or two on how you intend to approach it, what challenges you see ahead, and what you think your process will look like. Compare notes to incorporate new ideas or approaches into your future work.
Set fun tasks and deadlines
If general networking and learning is your goal it might be fun to set weekly goals. Week 1 might be about getting to know each other. See how much you can learn about your pair by researching them. Create a persona using what you learn. Week 2 could focus on learning a new tool. Choose a tool each and set each other an easy task to complete. Week 3 might be used to learn a new research technique. You get the idea.
Think about what you’d like to get out of the session. Have a list of your current challenges – both immediate and long term. Outline your skillset and areas of expertise/passion. Make sure your calendar is up to date so that you can commit ahead to meeting/call times. Be realistic about what you can achieve in the timeframe.