2018 my year in review

Twenty eighteen has felt like a tough year for me. It’s only in looking back that I realise actually it went pretty well. My time has been squeezed more than ever before. A toddler running around, lots of interesting client work and working something new (more on that later) has left little time for reflection so its New Year's Eve, time to reflect.

Joe in net magazine

In Net magazine

I was featured in Net magazine, four page spread. My mum is very proud.

Joe in net magazine

Sadly they didn’t take up the option for the at home with family follow up (joke)

On the Boagworld podcast

I was on the proper ace Boagworld podcast.

Joe on the Boagworld Show. I have a good rant about psychology, UX and ethics.

Downloading my brain into a series of Smashing Magazine Articles

I took everything I know about building product and wrote a series of articles on the UX / Product Lifecycle for Smashing Magazine

Part One: Attracting Users To Your Product
Part Two: Onboarding Users To Your Product
Part Three: Encouraging Loyalty. Coming soon (It’s been a busy year!)

Two trips to San Fransisco

I was fortunate to visit San Fran twice this year.

I had a great time talking at Smashing Conf in April. That talk had over 100K views on YouTube.
Joe Leech on Designing Powerful User Experiences With Psychology
(This is much nicer to watch Vimeo version.)

I was back in July to run my Psychology for UX and Product Design workshop at Mind the Product San Fransisco.

Smashing Toronto

It was off to Toronto in July for my first ever conference without slides. So no PowerPoint or Keynote and wow was it frightening.

Joe on stage in Toronto
Photo credit Alexander Kallaway

It went pretty well, apart from my rather rushed drawing. It’s hard to live sketch in front of 800 people.

Jobs to be Done at UX London

My very first UX London and I ran a workshop on Jobs To Be Done (JTBD).

It was an extremely smart audience and we worked together to look how JTBD offers a consistent framework for user research and product strategy across larger organisations. I’ve since run my Jobs to be Done workshop with a number of clients.

Highs and lows

I had to take two weeks off and was in bed for most of that with Piriformis Syndrome. My piriformis muscle was inflamed and trapped my sciatic nerve. There’s nothing that focuses the mind more than having to do nothing and if I kept very still I wasn’t in pain. So lying still on my back I had a lot of thinking time. I couldn’t sit a desk for another week after that. Thanks to the miracle worker that is Alan Muckle I’m ok now and thankful for good health.

Moving from Projects to longer term engagements

For 2018 I moved away from project work to working longer term with product teams. Coaching, advising, helping and supporting product teams on an ongoing basis. Just being there to help steer the team and the product in the right direction. This year I’ve been working with Open Source Software company Alfresco, UK Charity Shaw Trust and Booking.com / RentalCars.com amongst others.

The big time! Mind the Product

October was a month of big things. The biggest audience I’ve spoken to (around 2,000) and the biggest stage (The Barbican).

Joe on stage at mind the product conference
Photo credit: Mind the Product London 2018

It was terrifying but also a lot of fun. Watch the talk here:
Using Psychology to Supercharge Your Products by Joe Leech on Vimeo

And finally, something new and exciting coming in 2019

Throughout 2018 I’ve been using my spare time to build a start-up. Our Canary helps working parents manage their busy family and work lives. It’s a problem that’s close to my heart and I want to build a product that makes lives better. Watch this space for more Canary related things in 2019.

Stay in touch through Twitter, I’m @mrjoe or on LinkedIn


Also published on Medium.

Leave a Reply