London, England April 1, 2017
Started from the Margins now we here: our unfortunate empathy advantage

In the tech and digital goods industry, successful products are often those made to be consumed by many, various people. How do we creators know what various people want? Empathy, that's how. This reality makes the skill of empathy powerful and sought after. In fact, EMPATHY is a superpower. Who has empathy in spades? Marginalized folks, that's who!

Unable to celebrate our empathy advantage, most of us who are excluded from resources and opportunity have been forced to be empathetic in order to avoid being ostracized, impoverished, assaulted, or killed by those in positions of power.

In this talk I explore the buzzword EMPATHY, and examine modern social structures that force the marginalized to be empathetic or die. Within this lens I will refocus a light on the way we can leverage our highly performing powers of empathy to combat those forces of marginalization responsible for the reluctant and conditional advantage of being disadvantaged.

Paris, France July 9, 2016
Honoring Your Struggle by Hacking Company Culture with UX

As marginalized people wanting to do our best technology and design work in impactful ways, we often find ourselves in corporate or company cultures that are designed for our failure and misery.

Fighting for our personal survival in theses spaces is usually misunderstood by others as a fight that has nothing to do with the products and services we're trying to build.

But how can an organization generate a truly successful product if the ENVIRONMENT in which it's made is actually designed for people's failure?

This presentation is a 4 part, UX-based strategy of Analysis, Destruction, (re)Design, and Adjustment tactics.

It's components are derived from the lived experience of thriving on the margins and challenging the status quo.

Let's explore this strategy as a way to both bring our whole selves to work and produce excellent digital products at the same time.