Have you considered going into UX Research from a completely different field? Jason Garrison shares his journey of how he went from teaching to UX research. Learn how he got started in UX, created his portfolio, and perfected his interview skills to land his full-time role at AnswerLab as a Qualitative UX Researcher! Read the article below for the things he learned from the interview process, and listen to more of Jason’s fantastic tips in the full episode!
Switching Subjects: From Teacher to UX Researcher
In episode 47 of The Product Design Podcast, Seth Coelen interviews Jason Garrison, Qualitative UX Researcher at AnswerLab, a full-service user experience insights firm helping create experiences people love.
During our chat, Jason shares his UX journey and path from internship to full-time UX Researcher. He offers fantastic insights into what led him to his current role, including strategies on portfolio development, networking, interviewing, and how to accept feedback from your manager or team once you land the job you want! This episode is filled with excellent advice for anyone looking to get into UX, especially if they are curious about becoming a UX Researcher!
How Jason decided to switch to UX from teaching
Jason started his career in teaching but always had a deep interest in social studies and human behavior. After his time in education, he spent a few years in Malaysia working for a non-profit, researching with a group of people to better understand the culture of the people there. Jason really enjoyed studying and learning more there, but his time in Malaysia ended because of Covid.
Jason was unsure what was next for him, but he was soon introduced to UX by his long-time friend, Seth Coelen. Jason liked that his interest in human behavior would tie into this new opportunity, and ultimately, he became the inspiration behind the original UX Cabin internship program.
How to land your first full-time UX Research job
During the internship, Jason realized that UX research was the best direction for him to go next. He is excited to do something he loves that ties into his interests! In this episode, Jason shares his learnings on moving from the internship to contracting and then to a full-time UX Research position. Here are a few key insights he shared during this interesting episode!
"I had someone work with me on my LinkedIn and portfolio to align industry language to what I was trying to describe because when you just describe yourself, you have in your mind the message that you're trying to get across, but it's really important to speak in terms that can be understood by recruiters and by companies."
"It's a fun time to be a part of this group of people that are saying: what are people's needs, what are their preferences, and how do we elevate those voices to the people that are designing for them to make the world a safer, more beautiful and elegant place."
Thank you so much, Jason!
It was so fun having Jason on the show! Sending a big thanks to him for talking to us about the knowledge he gathered on his journey to becoming a UX Researcher. From making a career pivot, getting valuable experience, polishing his portfolio and LinkedIn profile, and contracting for an income while he worked on getting his full-time role! There is a lot of value to take from this episode and put into action along your career path!
Listen to the complete episode on The Product Design Podcast, which gives a great perspective on productively receiving feedback, and what qualities Jason believes help someone become a great UX Researcher. Don't forget to follow Jason on LinkedIn and check out his website!
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