I'm Ryan from Sydney Aus - and am pretty new to the UX world.
I've gotten myself involved with a number of UX groups over the past few months and I must say that the general UX community is incredibly helpful, tight-nit and welcoming. Including yours! So thanks for having me!
My story is as such - I've been a graphic designer for 10 years, having worked as an all-rounder in everything from print production to web design.
The last 3 years I've been in-house for a financial services company, tasked with building the design team from scratch.
As it so happened managing a small studio and bringing in fresh juniors designers really opened my eyes. As I began doing less design work myself and more sign-off and mentoring, I really began to notice the importance of understanding who we were doing the work for and why. It was something I always asked instinctively, but for a new designer there was a do-what-you're-told mentality which I needed to help them change and develop.
Lets fast forward a year (early 2014) and my focus had completely changed. A brief wasn't enough and I was spending all my time focusing on WHO WHAT WHERE WHY HOW. and repeat. and repeat. and repeat. I wanted to research. I wanted to understand. I wanted perfection. I wanted wow.
So in developing my team I evolved, and knew it was time for me to take a new direction in my career.
I knew a bit about this YOU-EX. I knew there were wireframes. I knew it was the behind-the-scenes of design. I knew there was research.
Actually I knew f-all!
I enrolled myself into a 3 month course. It was amazing. Once again my eye were opened and I was excited. I still am.
I said goodbye to my team and muscled my way into the newly formed digital projects team, and working with another UX designer we've taken the bull by the horns. With a new website, app(s), portals, intranet, plus more in the pipeline - I'm really getting to sink my teeth into this brilliant career.
I go to meet-ups and got myself a mentor. I read as much as I can and learn as often as I can. I'm immersing myself in this world and it's right where I want to be.
I'm totally into UX research. I've just put together a pitch to run a week of qualitative and contextual enquiry research (fingers crossed it gets approved), and am also working hard on improving my personas, journeys, an experience mapping.
Exploration. Problem Solving. Observation. Behaviour. Emotion. Connection. These are the words which describe what I do now, and I believe that coming from a design background I've got a strong base to work from... and can't wait to design some WOW experiences.