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Andrea Maillard

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As a UX expert with a proven track record in the tech industry🙋🏻♀️, I've seen firsthand how the systems and methodologies used to digitize and optimize digital products can be equally transformative for non-tech businesses. Whether you're looking to streamline your operations, enhance your customer experience, or build a stronger brand, the principles of user-centric design and agile development can be powerful allies in driving non-tech success.

Leveraging Tech Expertise for Non-Tech Transformation

One of the key advantages of working with a UX mindset from the tech field is the ability to apply cutting-edge digital tools and processes to non-tech challenges. By adopting the systems and frameworks used to design and develop digital products, non-tech businesses can unlock new levels of efficiency, responsiveness, and customer-centricity. In a recent article I bumped into 1, the writer emphasizes on the diference between the concept Digitization,and Digitization, which I find fascinating.

The first concep, Digitization, focuses on converting the analog practices of a business into digital, which I think slowly everyone in this world should be making, no matter the business or customer focus. Only in Germany, 93% of the population are highly active in social media 1 and do online shopping. Which indicates that EVERYONE should be able to do their job in a digital maner.

The second concept, Digitalization, is focused on providing new resources and services through digital plataforms. So this is basically building a Digital branch of your business on top of what you already offers. Still important in order for a business to expand in a much larger scale.

But what I find much more intersting is the third concept, Digital Transformation. This is like bringing all the horspowers 🐎 to your business to adapt into the digital world and bring the strenght of your company, your products, your services and your phylosophy into the digital thinking mindset, and adapting the best of both worlds to create something powerful and unique, which will only make your business stronger.

For example, a study by McKinsey found that a small hotel in the Swiss Alps was able to increase its occupancy rates by 25% after partnering with a UX-focused digital consultant. By mapping out the customer journey, identifying pain points, and implementing a more intuitive booking system, the hotel was able to streamline its operations and provide a seamless experience for guests 3.

Embracing Agile Methodologies for Non-Tech Agility

Another key advantage of working with the tech-savvy UX mindset is the ability to introduce agile methodologies to non-tech environments. By fostering a more iterative, collaborative, and data-driven approach to problem-solving, businesses can become more adaptable, responsive, and resilient in the face of changing market conditions.

According to a McKinsey Global Survey though, having a successful Digital Transformation points to a set of 21 factors which into the five following main Categories:


So this basically says that someone who leads a successful Digital Transformation needs to mostly have very strong Soft Skills, and not the IT knowledge... hm, that makes me think 🤔.

Cultivating a UX-Driven Vision for Non-Tech Success

At the heart of any successful digital transformation lies a deep understanding of the customer's needs, pain points, and aspirations. By bringing a UX-centric approach to non-tech businesses, UX experts can help leaders and teams develiop a more empathetic, user-focused vision that drives meaningful change.

Consider the case of a small German startup I recently heard of that specializes in custom-made furniture. By working with a UX designer, the company was able to completely overhaul its branding and customer experience, resulting in a 35% increase in sales and a significant boost in customer loyalty. The key was the UX expert's ability to translate the company's passion for craftsmanship into an emotional design philosophy that resonated with its target audience.

Emotional Design for Non-Tech: Building Motivation and Engagement

Finally, the principles of emotional design – the art of creating experiences that evoke positive emotions and foster deeper connections – can be incredibly powerful in non-tech environments. By incorporating elements of emotional design into their branding, customer interactions, and internal processes, non-tech businesses can cultivate a more engaged, motivated, and loyal workforce and customer base.

A prime example is a German congressman who enlisted the help of a UX specialist to revamp his political campaign's digital presence. By infusing the campaign's messaging and visual identity with a sense of authenticity, empathy, and inspiration, the UX expert was able to build a stronger emotional connection with constituents, ultimately contributing to the congressman's successful re-election.

🤓☝️Another clear example of Emotional Design is the IKEA Trap: How They Get You to Buy More (And Why That's Okay!)

If you've ever found yourself wandering through the IKEA maze, intent on just checking out a single sofa, only to emerge with a cart overflowing with all sorts of unexpected goodies, fear not, my friend - you're not alone! This is a classic case of IKEA's ingenious use of "nudges" to prime your brain and get you to buy more than you planned.

It's no accident that IKEA's stores are designed like a carefully curated obstacle course, guiding you through a winding path filled with tempting displays and "must-have" home accessories. At every turn, your senses are bombarded with clever emotional cues, subconsciously convincing you that your living space is simply not complete without that adorable throw pillow or that nifty kitchen gadget.

But don't be too hard on yourself - IKEA's tactics are the result of extensive research into human psychology and behavior. They know exactly how to tap into our innate desire for a cozy, well-appointed home, making us feel like we'd be missing out if we didn't scoop up that perfect piece to tie the whole room together.

So the next time you find yourself wandering the IKEA aisles, embrace the experience! Indulge your inner interior designer, let your imagination run wild, and don't be afraid to let a few extra items find their way into your cart. After all, who knows - that random knickknack might just be the key to transforming your living space into the Scandinavian-inspired oasis of your dreams.


As the lines between tech and non-tech continue to blur, the value of UX expertise in driving transformative change has never been more apparent. By leveraging the systems, methodologies, and design principles honed in the tech industry, UX experts can help non-tech businesses unlock new levels of efficiency, customer-centricity, and emotional engagement – ultimately paving the way for sustained success, especially in the German and Swiss markets.

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