How to create user personas that deliver real value


_This is a condensed extract about creating personas from a chapter of @joenatoli's  book ‘Think First’ that he’s generously allowed us to re-publish. Scroll to the bottom for an exclusive discount for UX Mastery readers._ 

Making ‘use scenarios’ contextual with personas
Remember the goofy little heads I drew in the diagram? Those are the people using what we’re designing here, and as I think you know by now, your most critical task is to understand them. What they need to do, why they’re motivated to do it and how they expect things to happen. One of the ways you…

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I want to be clear that I explore both of the areas noted above before any face-time with users. Before I read any usage data the client has for me. Before I hear from stakeholders what people are having trouble with or are complaining about.

The minute you have any of that input, your perception of who that user is has been irrevocably tainted.

This is great insight and I feel like it’s an easy thing to miss. We’re a bit like a scientist in this part we need a hypothesis that we can test with research. If we start with something we know then we’re going to be offering solutions based on a bias and maybe ignoring some of the bigger challenges.

Thanks for the excerpt from the book, I’ll have to pick it up at some point.


Thank you for the kind words! This came from more than a few misfires, which is always the best way to learn anything :wink:

I don’t get out here as often as I’d like, but definitely wanted to say thanks.