Meet Our Creators: UX Research Leader Behzod Sirjani
Hey everyone, and welcome to our Creator bio series! There are some really incredible leaders offering valuable insights on Learners, and we want to give you the tour of their greatest talks. Starting off with a great UX Research leader—let us introduce Behzod Sirjani!
- Name: Behzod Sirjani
- Current Role: Founder @ Yet Another Studio
- Specialties: Research Operations, Large-scale Programs, Leadership
“I help people and companies bring more rigor to their curiosity, so that they can make better decisions and build better products.” – Behzod Sirjani
Behzod heads his own independent research practice, Yet Another Studio, and has a long resume as a research leader and teacher—including roles as Senior User Experience Researcher at Facebook and Head of Research & Analytics Operations at Slack.
We’re incredibly proud to host his content and grateful for everything he shares with the community! Now let’s take a look at some of his work on Learners.
Trending in UX Research
003: Being a Good Research Partner
This talk was part of Behzod’s AMA series #AskBehzod. Usually he answers 3 or 4 big questions from the community, but this time Behzod dove way into a single question: How can I be a good partner to other people on my team?
And according to Behzod, the answer is not just doing better UX research, or building the perfect deck. He says there are two main ways you can become a better partner:
- Helping the organization make better decisions
- Opening up your practice
Easier said than done! Check out this talk to see how Behzod helps teams understand the research process so everyone can benefit.
“You need to have an understanding of how your organization—or at least the people you work with—make decisions, and at what cadence.”
002: The Importance of Critical Thinking – In UX Research, Interviews, and Portfolios
This episode of #AskBehzod answered some super important questions especially for junior researchers. Still, there’s tons of good info here for all kinds of researchers, like his interview and portfolio tips. Here are the questions he answers:
- 0:26 – What skills or attributes make someone a good junior UX researcher?
- 2:00 – What should you put in your portfolio or resume to set you apart from others?
- 4:22 – How do you handle interviews with a hiring manager who isn’t a researcher themselves?
- 6:03 – What are some ways to build your skillset as a researcher before actually getting a research job?
“A lot of folks early on focus a little too much on what good research looks like instead of why good research looks the way it does.”
You Are Not Your Research Report
This talk from UXRConf Anywhere argues that the UX research discipline’s failure to develop credibility and gain broader influence is due to an over-reliance on a single kind of artifact: the research report.
There are signs everywhere that research as a whole is valuable—and that it’s valued—but Behzod argues that too much focus is given to research outcomes, rather than the processes themselves.
He explores three perspective shifts to help you deliver on the full value of research.
The 3 perspective shifts:
- We’re teachers, not oracles.
- Focus on activities, not on artifacts.
- Find advocates, not stakeholders.
“Educate, enable and empower…You educate people about the importance of research and what’s possible. You enable them to engage in those kinds of activities, and then you empower them to do so. And this process creates advocates, which can help amplify your impact across the company and get more people involved. And so the cycle continues.”
One final note! Behzod published an essay on “The Organizational Appetite for Research” earlier this year where he calls out one of the key areas he misunderstood early in his career related to being a good research partner. Check it out!
And thanks for reading! If you haven’t already checked out the first installment of the new blog, check it out now!