Indi Young

Trailblazing empathy researcher

For the past 20 years, Indi Young has been pioneering ways to understand customers and employees in order to support them better. Most organizations have developed awareness and expertise at gathering big data–the numbers that track what and how people have done things. These same organizations, however, are inexpert at understanding why. The messy and divergent reasoning and motivations that drive … [more]

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  • Indi can help you with

    Mental Model Diagram Creation

    Indi can help your team with all parts of the process to create a strategic mental model diagram, which shows where you organization aligns with and supports various mental spaces people. Indi can help you define various scopes to explore over time and which behavioral audience segments to examine in detail for the benefit of your organization. She can help you screen for formal participants in listening sessions, and she can teach you how to run those sessions so that you develop enough rapport with a participant to dig deeper into their thought process. Indi can show your team a powerful way to write summaries of the concepts people mention, then she can show you how to find patterns inductively, based on the intent behind each concept. The patterns that result group into the upper half of the mental model diagram, which she can then help you align your offerings to in an effort to see gaps and opportunities in how to support people better.

    Developing Empathy

    Indi can help your team practice an empathetic mindset, coming from a more neutral place so that you can understand many more perspectives. Broadening the way your team thinks about the people it hopes to support lends clarity and vision to your creative process. This practice can be applied externally to customers as well as internally to stakeholders, peers, and direct-reports.

    Review of Your In-House Research Practices

    Indi can help your organization earmark the various methods in use for understanding customers, and show you how to balance your inputs between evaluative and generative, as well as between solution-focused and person-focused knowledge gathering.

  • Have Indi teach a course All courses

  • Books by Indi

    • Practical Empathy
      Practical Empathy

      For Collaboration and Creativity in Your Work
      to be published in January 2015

    • Print
      Mental Models

      Aligning Design Strategy with Human Behavior
      published in February 2008

  • Biography

    For the past 20 years, Indi Young has been pioneering ways to understand customers and employees in order to support them better. Most organizations have developed awareness and expertise at gathering big data–the numbers that track what and how people have done things. These same organizations, however, are inexpert at understanding why. The messy and divergent reasoning and motivations that drive people’s decisions are what Indi helps you tune in. She is expert at gathering the thoughts that lie deeper than simple preferences, opinions, and desires. And she is expert at helping you solidify patterns and sort through the wavelengths to focus on particular channels so you can support people in more powerful ways.
    In 2001 Indi was one of the founders of the user experience agency Adaptive Path, which has provided leadership for the experience and strategy design field. During her career, Indi has worked with clients in many industries, including higher education, and has seamlessly embedded with teams at multi-national organizations as well as with tiny start-ups. Clients are pleased with the efficient way Indi engages and with the tremendous knowledge she imparts to team members.
    Indi blogs at www.indiyoung.com, where you can also find links to helpful articles and presentations she has written over the years, and you can follow her on Twitter @indiyoung.