#ADayInTheLife of a Product Design Team Lead

We hope you’re enjoying our #ADayInTheLife series!

If you’re new to the series, here’s what you need to know: we’re asking employees from various departments to tell us more about how they approach their work day, from managing their time, to work-life balance, to their hobbies. After all, what better way to showcase our workplace diversity than to get them to walk us through an average day?

Today, we’d like you to meet Natalie Dowe, Product Design Team Lead at Retail inMotion. 

Name: Natalie Dowe

Position: Product Design Team Lead

Location: Dublin, Sandyford

Years of experience at RiM: 1 – 1/2 years 

 

I am the Product Design Team Lead at Retail inMotion. As a Product Designer, my job is to play a core role in the design thinking process. This involves discovering and defining problems and then empathically designing solutions.

By doing this, we make sure we are building the right things and designing them in the right way, allowing us to create simple, efficient, and intuitive products.

I recently moved into a Team Lead position about three months ago. An exciting part of this role is finding new ways to improve our current processes internally and externally with other departments. I am now able to take a macro UXUI perspective of the department and see how we can streamline and optimise how we work. 

 

Describe your typical work day

Each day is different, which makes it interesting. When I am in the discovery stage of a project, the investigations can bring me in many directions. This enables me to interact with a wide range of colleagues and users on any given day.

The design and developing stages are equally collaborative. I get to bring the discoveries back to the team and put them through their paces by defining, brainstorming and validating them through the minds of other Product Designers, Product Owners, Engineers, Solution Architects.

It is rewarding to uncover the “unknowns” and turn them into opportunities to create something that better fits our users’ needs.

I really enjoy working at Retail inMotion’s office in Sandyford. From day one, I felt like I was already part of the company family: I was greeted at the door by a fellow Product Designer who showed me around the office and I found a lovely care package on my desk containing some treats welcoming me to the Product Design team. It is the small gestures like this that make such a big difference in transitioning into a new job.

I am lucky to also work with an amazing group of Product Designers who make each day, whether it is in the office or virtual office, creative, inspiring, and entertaining. This brings the best out in everyone, which, in turn, shows in the output of the work. 

 

What makes your job exciting?

I am currently working on a complex redesign of a legacy product. The big rebuilds are always exciting, but for me, some of the most satisfying parts of the job are finding the small changes to an interface that make a positive difference in our users’ day-to-day lives. There is tremendous gratification when you find these “low effort high value” wins.

I love the discovery phase of my job. It is rewarding to uncover the “unknowns” and turn them into opportunities to create something that better fits our users’ needs. One of the most valuable research outings was when I did observational research during a flight to Iceland. There is nothing quite like seeing your product used during a busy, packed short-haul flight to put your users’ needs into context. It is exciting to be able to bring these key insights back into the office and see how it enhances and directs our decision-making.