Illustration of multiple computers over a digital post-it board background
Illustration of multiple computers over a digital post-it board background
The always-design-crucial Post-Its on a whiteboard, taken digitally. Image by Noun Project and Dave Roth.

Our work requires collaboration with clients, and this is best done in person. Since that hasn’t been an option for a while, we’re all developing new ways of getting the information and feedback we need from our client teams.

When you’re designing in complex enterprise spaces, you’ll encounter a common problem: No matter how smart you are, how hard you work, or how focused your research is, you’ll never know as much about the problem space as your client. …

From Pexels

A year of learnings for presenting, collaborating and growing

For almost the last year, a team of us at Grand Studio have been working remotely with a sports client who’s based out of NYC. Our team has conducted remote project kick offs, facilitated several dozen design reviews and meetings, and found ways to hold remote sketching sessions for brainstorming concepts. Throughout this experience, we’ve picked up some knowledge about remote collaboration and thought it’d be great to share for others in a similar position.

We’ll just pretend this is March 2019… Photo by Charles 🇵🇭 on Unsplash

Here we all are: one quarter down, and another begins. But there’s plenty of sunshine and patio meetings in our future so who can complain? Since we’ve been so busy over the last month, in particular, we wanted to share a peek at what’s been going on over here!

Chicago Womxn in Design

In honor of Women’s History Month, we embarked on a month-long social media takeover of the incredible women and non-binary design talent in our hometown of Chicago. Check out all the people you should know!

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

We formed our design consultancy last year, and the first part of the year was rapid putting-out of fires. We were taking over clients from our NYC parent company who’d recently been acquired, figuring out payroll, forming a brand identity, and hiring a staff who could handle the workload we were facing. While we cared about creating an inclusive and diverse culture, we really weren’t intently focused on it. Turns out, if you don’t give time and attention to something, it’s pretty hard to bring it to fruition.

At this, you might be asking, “Listen, I know diversity is a…

A trade show for everything in manufacturing — and some really cool tech.

Our team had the opportunity to visit the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) happening this week in Chicago. Wow. What an overwhelming whirlwind of innovation in the manufacturing and industrial spaces! Here are some of the top highlights and trends that inspired and excited us.

Trend: Digital Product Classes

We saw four big classes of digital products being presented:

  1. Interfaces for detailed analysis and metrology We saw tools to analyze porosity, reflectivity, density, and many other factors that were designed to be consider one piece at a…

How writing a love/hate letter to a product can uncover what is and isn’t working.

I wrote this a couple of years back, but this methodology still holds up today as a way of understanding the relationship between tech and human behavior.

Experience designers at Moment really enjoy writing, drawing, and explaining. In fact, we love it so much that we crafted a whole experience design lunch around writing letters to one of our products. These letters helped us to bring our product to life, and communicate our deep love or hatred for it. In essence, each of us wrote either the classic love letter or the bitter break-up letter to our product.

So, what’s the point?

Early on…

Our co-founders presenting during a talk in our office.

New name, same great Chicago-based digital strategy and product design consultancy.

Two years ago, a team of Moment designers came to Chicago to establish a new office. We were dedicated to growing Moment’s offering in a new city with new challenges and new clients. In these past two years, we’ve had the pleasure of working with some fantastic clients, had the opportunity to explore the boundaries of new technology, and craft an environment for our design team that embodies all of the special qualities about working at Moment. I am personally very proud of all that we’ve accomplished together.

With Moment’s New York office joining the Verizon family, our team here…

Managing Director, Drew Gold, giving a talk about Chatbots in our office

Today is an exciting day. Moment Chicago is becoming an independent company. Moment New York is being acquired by Verizon. Things are happening.

When we moved out here exactly two years ago to open up our Chicago business, we felt like pioneers. We landed in a city where we knew almost no one. We had no projects based here in Chicago. We were working out of someone else’s office (which was really someone else’s house). I can admit now that there were some days where we spent more time playing HORSE on our Nerf basketball hoop than was strictly necessary.

Our designers are curious people, so when new tech comes along with promises of new, better UX solutions, there’s at least a handful of us who are willing to swallow the red pill see how deep the rabbit hole goes. Typically this means investigating the technology optimistically and with an open-mind, with the goal of establishing an informed opinion (recently our summer interns did this with Peer). The goal of these explorations is to encourage healthy criticism of new technology, and question the legitimacy of the design patterns that compliment it. …

Photo by Nong Vang on Unsplash

Recently, my coworker Steven and I led a workshop at the Service Experience Chicago conference. For those of you not familiar with the conference, it’s known for it’s small size (75 people), diversity of attendants (VPs, students, educators), and quality of material presented. The workshop we led was called “Storytelling & Narrative in Service Design” and dealt with how we should be using story differently in product and service design than we do in traditional UX. …

Grand Studio

We are a digital strategy and product design consultancy in Chicago.

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