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Practical Empathy

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  172 ratings  ·  13 reviews
Conventional product development focuses on the solution. Empathy is a mindset that focuses on people, helping you to understand their thinking patterns and perspectives. Practical Empathy will show you how to gather and compare these patterns to make better decisions, improve your strategy, and collaborate successfully.
ebook, 200 pages
Published January 15th 2015 by Rosenfeld Media
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3.87  · 
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 ·  172 ratings  ·  13 reviews

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Adrian Howard
Aug 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Initially I thought this was going to be one of those "good, but I know this already" books, but it ended up sparking a *lot* of ideas in my head. Especially some of the ways of talking about ongoing research — language is so important in helping folk see value. Going to be revisiting this in the context of the stuff I do with customer interviewing & incremental persona.
Mar 03, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: books-2015
I really liked Young's first book, Mental Models, because it depicted a clear process for people who were looking for a design process. But this book was a bit trickier: I understand what she was trying to get at, but I think with these books, they tend to be an in depth description of designer's processes, and might be better if they were descriptive instead of prescriptive. Process is probably partly personality driven, partly driven by the requirements of one's design challenges, so understan ...more
Mar 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you want to start with user research, start with this book and read chapters 4 & 5. The book describes the most basic method how to listen to users. It is a must have basics before you'll start with other methods (in-depth interviews, usability study etc.). It's really desciptive and contains a lot of handy and practical advices. That star down is for the first 3 chapters and the chapters at the end (6 or 7 and more) - why so many words for such simple things? These chapters are just wais ...more
Apr 12, 2017 rated it liked it
It started 💯💯💯but apart from some tips for empathy w coworkers in the final chapters it lost my interest by focusing too much on methods. I'm too intuitive for that nonsense.
Karen Mardahl
Aug 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
I intended reading this earlier, but got caught up in a million other things. Thank goodness for my local UX Book Club meeting. It got me to read it. I'm glad. I thought it was a very worthwhile read. It got me thinking in lots of different directions. I especially liked what I call the soft skills part. I think soft skills are too often neglected. I am referring especially to the listening part. I like how she gives very practical examples for practising, which is sound advice. After all, you r ...more
Mar 01, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: business
Meh. Vague and meandering - the first few chapters are interesting, but I wasn't impressed by the rest. A pity, since I had been looking forward to this book and it appeared to be the exact thing I needed...
Jan 28, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Young's instructions on conducting a formal listening session are worthwhile. Much of the rest of the material, while not total fluff, seems like it was added just to make it book length.
Nov 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The core message of this book is to listen to others. It offers a methods that helps in listening: building the empathy, that may lead to better decisions (applying empathy). On it's core it's unguided talk, keeping yourself from reactions, emptying your mind, and listening to reactions, reasoning and guiding principles. So not for example opinions or facts. When working with this quotes the key is to make summaries, actions followed by brief information that captures the specific intent of the ...more
Mitch Dowell
Nov 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
I actually purchased the audiobook version of this book. The author (Indi) did a great voiceover job - something that can't actually be said about all authors. She does a great job of explaining what empathy IS and what it ISN'T, and provides some good techniques for listening at work. Although, I think that is where she lost me at times in the book - especially in the later chapters. She gets a little too "textbooky" towards the end on the topic. But overall is still worth 4 stars and I would h ...more
Aug 07, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: design
The first 3 chapters have the most value. Clearly defining empathy and drawing a line between emotional and cognitive is important. The later chapters on how to listen, how to use empathy in teams and in the workplace seemed less valuable to me. The content seemed obvious and a little fluffed to fill out a "how to" book. Generally, I appreciated a good third of this book's ideas.
Al Bajet
Apr 18, 2019 rated it liked it
Hand holding book on empathy. Honestly, felt good that an “industry standard” book validated natural actions I already do. Great book if you don’t know how to give empathy, boring book if you already do. Very beginner, not for advanced.
Apr 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
For all the naysayers, the thinking style approach to capturing reasoning, reactions and guiding principles through active listening and cognitive empathy is a game changer! We will rue the day we stuffed so much pap and fluff into our personas!
Feb 22, 2019 rated it liked it
Didn’t expect this to be so much about UX, and so little about teams. Still some solid advice on developing empathy.
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