My career began in the late 1900s when I built my first website in my dorm room and shared the link with a friend on the other side of the planet. I was instantly hooked.
In 2001 I co-founded a digital agency designing applications for music industry clients. We flourished for a couple of years until Napster and the iPod combined to put my biggest clients and I out of business. This adversity led to my first career pivot when I learned programming so I could keep making stuff (and pay NY rent).
10,000 hours into my engineering career I had to run my first usability test on some clickable wireframes. The users – actual people who had to work with this software – hated it. Participants tore it apart and provided me an object lesson in user-centered design. I knew at that moment I needed to pursue thoughtful design that is rooted in real human needs.
I made my second career pivot back to design. I took on any job I could at tiny startups & side hustles where I could learn skills in branding, prototyping, UX research, interaction design and more. My combined experience as an entrepreneur, engineer and designer opened opportunities in product management and team leadership.