Usability Tools Podcast: Robust Personas

Jared Spool

November 21st, 2007

Usability Tools Podcast: Robust Personas
Recorded: November 19th, 2007 from the studios of UIE
Brian Christiansen, UIE Podcast Producer
Duration: 36 min | File size: 21.5 MB
[ Subscribe to our podcast via iTunes. This link will launch the iTunes application.]
[ Subscribe with other podcast applications. ]
[ Text Transcript ]


Each week in our Usability Tools Podcast, we will be sitting down to discuss tips and tools for improving your site’s user experience. The goal of our weekly podcast is to share some of the most important findings from UIE’s research on web design and usability.

This week, we follow up our Virtual Seminar presentation on Building Robust Personas In 30 Days or Less, with answers to questions attendees asked during the session. I highly suggest you take a listen. You’ll uncover some wonderful insights even if you didn’t attend the seminar.

During the podcast, Brian Christiansen and I discussed the following topics:

» What are personas?
» Should your organization have dedicated UX team members for maintaining updated personas?
» Can just one person participate in the persona building process?
» Should you develop scenarios for multiple personas that all fit one task?
» Can you create personas based solely on survey results?
» How do personas relate to Actors and Use Cases from the Rational Unified Process (RUP)?

During the podcast, we also mentioned several valuable resources for incorporating personas into the development process:

Steve Mulder’s The User is Always Right

Alan Cooper’s About Face, 3rd edition

Alan Cooper’s The Inmates Are Running the Asylum

John Pruit and Tamara Adlin’s The Persona Lifecycle

As always, we’re very interested in hearing from you. Do you have questions or comments about this episode? We love to create shows based on your questions, just like we did with this episode. Please leave a comment below or email us directly at

UIE’s Latest Research: If you’re interested in the topics we discuss in the podcasts, I highly suggest you sign up for our free newsletter, UIEtips, to read our latest usability and design research as soon as we publish it. We’ll also notify you in UIEtips when we publish new podcasts.

Survey and listener drawing!
We would like to give you and your co-workers free admission to our next Virtual Seminar program, with full, lifetime access to the archived program as well! All you need to do to win is give us your feedback on your podcast listening experience. Fill out the following survey and each week we’ll randomly send one survey participant a free admission to the next UIE Virtual Seminar and Archive, a $169.00 value! We appreciate your input!

Participate in our survey to win!

2 Responses to “Usability Tools Podcast: Robust Personas”

  1. Daniel Szuc Says:

    Great listening.

    Favorite quote – “People are basically the same” – Amen!

  2. Caroline Pickering Says:

    Hi there

    Great seminar and follow up podcast!

    Our team were wondering whether you have any particular advice on using this method for the design of applications which may have a multitude of ‘bits’ of functionality? We see that there would be a need to focus the effort of persona creation in some way but how would we do this to best effect?

    Does application development necessarily imply that many personas have to be created over the course of the project to deal with the real detail of the application’s functionality OR is there some way of keep the number of personas down without reducing their effectiveness, perhaps by applying them to more broadly defined functionality. Hope that makes sense!

    Caroline Pickering (Sigmer Technologies Ltd, UK)

Add a Comment