C / Pelican I/II
I’m living in this liminal space. I’m in a transition, but to what, I don’t know. For 10 years, I saw working in our field not only as my career, but as my home.
And then, at the beginning of 2021, I left.
At first, I believed what I told others. I had left in order to become a writer. I set up a Substack, and I sent 500-1000 word essays each week to the wonderful folks who entrusted me with their inboxes.
But now, two years later, I recognize that this transition is more complex than a career change. This transition is a reckoning with my identity and my belief in a field that I once thought would make the world a more hospitable place.
And I do still believe in the tools of UX: the ones that get us to really understand and take responsibility for our effect on the people we touch. These ways of being and thinking are as important as they always have been.
In this talk, I’ll tell you how I got here, but more importantly, I’ll share how I’m staying hopeful even as I feel more disillusioned than ever before.
I’m a monarch in a chrysalis, a gelatinous goo, and I don’t even know whether my wings will be orange, let alone if I will be a butterfly, when I emerge.
Come spend some time with me, and we can find some catharsis and stamina together.
About the speakers
Veronica Erb is a human with a penchant for asking questions.
She writes Finding Out, a newsletter for people who do and use UX research. For over a decade, she’s been conducting UX research studies, evolving her approach, and coaching people who do research, most recently at NPR.
Before that, she nerded out at EightShapes, co-chaired the 2015 IA Summit in Minneapolis, and traveled to Rwanda to do UX research for an international non-profit.
She lives in St. Louis, where she enjoys gardening and playing ukulele with her family.