Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Buy Local (Talent): Hank Delcore

Look at your iPhone. Look at your TV remote. Look at how you take out the trash, wash your clothes, or fold your shirts. Look at how you sit when you read versus how you sit when watching a sporting event versus how you sit when eating dinner. Ever watch that much stuff? Hank does. He is s professional voyeur. Hank specializes in Design Anthropology. Ya, you may think that he should be trekking through the jungle to see how apes pick lice off their babies (not at all what he does, btw), but Hank would rather concern himself with your grooming habits and how you use specific products.

I met Hank about a year ago (maybe longer) and was instantly impressed. He helps lead a team at Fresno State, the Institute of Public Anthropology. In that role (along with his teaching), he helps designers and entrepreneurs understand how the market actually using products and services to meet their needs...even if the market creates a secondary use for a product (do you hear me Twitter?).

Here is why you call Hank. You want to take a product to market. In your brilliance, you designed it so that you will like it. You hire an engineer to materialize you dream. Now back up and engage Hank in the very beginning. You are not your customer.


Below is more information about Hank Delcore.

Hank Delcore -- Professor of Anthropology at Fresno State and Director of the Institute of Public Anthropology on campus. Also a user experience/usability professional.

Hank's specialty is using strategic information about human behavior to improve the user experience and usability of products and services. Much of what he does falls under the heading of product design. However, his specific approach is participatory design, which means Hank treats users of products and services as co-designers. The idea is: if you want to field a product, and you want it to make it in the market, you should consult its users during the design process. A product designed in collaboration with users will better meet their needs and desires, deliver a rich user experience, and more likely out-do the competition.

As far as I know, Hank is the only user experience professional in town focused on translating data about human behavior into design insights for products and services. Other organizations are doing some great market research, but no one is focused on the front-end: product design from earliest inception to the point of being market ready. Hank leverages over twenty years of his own experience, plus resources from the knowledge base at the university (colleagues and students) to make products ready for success.

If we’re going to have a vibrant local economy, locally-based businesses need to excel at delivering the best user experience to their customers at the best value. If you have a new product or you want to keep ahead of the competition by improving an existing one, Hank can help.

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