Our first ever all-virtual UXPA Boston Conference took place on October 23, 2020. Thank you to all who attended!
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Friday, October 23 • 3:30pm - 4:15pm
Facilitating Collaboration on Cross-cultural Teams

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Cross-cultural team working can be fraught with misunderstanding, bad communications and missed opportunities. But done well, a diverse team can be a powerful resource to design robust products and services that are more evocative, desirable, and delightful. If well managed, a diverse and collaborative team can have a positive impact on the organization: boosting productivity, creativity and overall company performance.

In contemporary working environments, collaborative teams are often composed of people from different cultures, nations, religions, racial and ethnic backgrounds. Now more than ever, there is a growing need to understand and embrace differences. Yet, many teams fail in this endeavor because they lack the tools to harness the power of diversity.

In this session, you’ll learn tools and techniques to build team cohesion, and surface deep understandings using evocative objects to facilitate those difficult conversations. We’ll share our experiences helping teams to communicate more effectively by building common ground and shared understanding amongst diverse individuals.

We’ll share real-world cases that we have worked on to demonstrate how designing your organization’s difficult conversations can help revitalize the workplace environment, and improve morale and productivity. Using research and techniques you already know — like participant observation, interviews, cultural probes, participatory design and workshops — we’ll show how understanding cultures through objects is an effective method to improve understanding in a cross-cultural team.

avatar for Estefania Ciliotta

Estefania Ciliotta

Experience Design Researcher, Northeastern University
Estefania holds a Master of Fine Arts in Experience Design from Northeastern University. She is an international expert on working effectively with cross-cultural teams. Estefania was born in Peru and has worked in many different countries and industries. She observed and researched innovative practices in team building for international... Read More →
avatar for Michael Arnold Mages

Michael Arnold Mages

Asst Professor, Northeastern University
Michael Arnold Mages teaches design at Northeastern University with an emphasis on experiential and conversational approaches. Over the past 5 years he has convened over 50 community conversations on behalf of city, state, and the US Federal government, as well as an array of not-for-profit... Read More →

Friday October 23, 2020 3:30pm - 4:15pm EDT
3 - Independence (Strategy)