Here at Snap Out, we get to know people.
Or, more specifically, we get to know your customers, so that you can create a product or a service that they will love! We do so through a killer mix of user and market research, combined with design thinking and lean practices.
That way, you can truly understand who you’re creating a product or service for, as well as their wants and needs, allowing you to generate more profit.
Related: Our services
However, we don’t think it’s fair that we spend so much time getting to know you and your users, without telling you a bit about the Snap Out team! As we’ve said before, it’s a two-way street! Which is why we started the “Meet the Team” series here on our blog.
Today, we’re talking to Snap Out’s Managing Director, Dr Chloe Sharp.
Not only is she an incredible leader, but she’s a hands-on member of our team, acting as a user and market researcher and a grant funding expert. Her research experience and passion are evident in all that she does, which is why we know you’re going to love this interview.
The Snap Out team is semi-remote. Where do you work from?
I work from a range of places as our work is spread around London, Surrey and Milton Keynes. I work from coffee-shops, co-working spaces, home and the train.
Related post: How we utilise remote working at Snap Out
What’s your favourite snack whilst working?
I’m trying to be good and not snack too much. I do love a Chocolate Orange Nakd bar as a morning snack though.
Tell us about your studies and career before Snap Out.
The route to becoming Managing Director has taken many twists and turns but all the threads have come together. When I left school I wanted to work in Human Resources as I loved business and psychology, I got a BSc (Hons) in Human Resource Management.
I had a short career in this and then threw myself into studies, doing an MSc in Health Psychology and Management, PGCE in Business Studies and then a PhD exploring Polish migrant views toward organ donation, followed by a brief academic career as a Research Fellow.
After having a family, and needing to get back to work, an opportunity arose to work at Transport Systems Catapult (TSC) in Research. Whilst working at TSC, I met Aaron Mason, the founder of Snap Out, which was a digital product studio at the time, he was working on exciting mobility projects using AI and chatbots.
After TSC, I worked at Snap Out as a Research and Development Manager, then Chief Research Officer. Some of the team left early 2018 and the Innovate UK Design Foundations project ended at the same time. At this point in time, we saw an opportunity for Snap Out to pivot toward focusing on user and market research in emerging technologies, which I have been leading as Managing Director since July 2018.
What’s your favourite thing about Snap Out?
I can’t choose one favourite thing as there are so many things about Snap Out I like. It gives me flexibility as we work semi-remotely, we have a fantastic team here who I am learning from every day and I love our vision and mission for products in digital and emerging technology such as AI and chatbots, to be more user-centric.
We also work with digital marketing, brand communications and website design companies, to help them develop products and messages that resonate with users and customers. We work with accelerator programmes to upskill entrepreneurs in research and grant writing, to give empower them to learn from customers and take their business to the next level with funding. I find my work really interesting, varied and so satisfying when product teams and digital agencies learn about their users and customers as well as our research insights being implemented in iterations of the design as well as the product roadmap.
What does your average workday look like?
Every day is completely different.
Recently, we’ve run UXMK, a meetup in Milton Keynes for people working in User Experience and related areas and people wanting to learn more about these areas, which was a good day in the office. There are many networking opportunities in Milton Keynes, I try to get to as many local conferences, events and network meetings as I can. Alongside this, I am out at meetings with potential clients and strategic partners. Sometimes I am working from home planning projects and research or writing reports.
Find out more about UXMK through our LinkedIn group
What piece of advice would you give your younger self, knowing what you now do?
A good question! I think have more confidence and belief in yourself. I’ve been on a personal journey since I became Managing Director and looked more into women leadership and finding a voice in a noisy and masculine world. The biggest piece of advice, which we pass on to our kids is this: “Work hard and be kind to people and yourself”
What emerging technology are you most excited about seeing become more common?
I’m looking forward to seeing how AI can augment human tasks in the workplace, as it has so many possibilities. Business is focused on efficiency and I’m interested to see how AI will develop to make work more efficient and better quality and how the skills in the workplace will change to facilitate this, such as improving critical thinking and analytical skills.
Related Post: User research for AI: What we’ve learned
What’s your favourite book?
My favourite book is Alan Sugar’s autobiography called What You See Is What You Get. It showed me that having a successful business is about making your own opportunities, thinking creatively to solve problems and to take full responsibility and accountability for the good and the bad.
Want to know the first steps to getting to know your customers? Sign up to our FREE 7-day email course here!