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Design & UX

Esteban Garcia, Senior UX/UI Designer at Parrot Analytics

From 'the land of coffee' to studying and now working in what he describes as the 'magical land', Esteban Garcia, Senior UI/UX Designer at Parrot Analytics has found a home working in New Zealand that he seems pretty stoked about.

We caught up with Esteban to learn more about his career journey into UX Design, as well as some of the misconceptions about what UX Designers actually do. Thanks for sharing your story, Esteban.

“.since we are a truly global team and most of our clients are overseas (in different time zones), it takes a lot of meetings (and a lot of coffee).”

Firstly, how would you explain to a five year old what it is you do?

Remember how you love to watch videos on Youtube?

Well, I help to create an app like Youtube, but for people that make those videos.

They use our app to learn about what people love to watch so they can make the best videos ever!

And for the adults, what does that translate to in regards to your day-to-day?

It really depends on the priorities, in a startup they change a lot. However, on a good day, it would be a 50/50 split between meetings (workshops) and hands on design (low-fi, hi-fi, prototypes).

If you didn’t know, we have a lot of meetings. Why? Because we need to understand, evaluate and dissect either an existing issue or a new feature/product before doing any design or ideation work.

Also, since we are a truly global team and most of our clients are overseas (in different time zones), it takes a lot of meetings (and a lot of coffee).

“A lot of people think of our work as mainly visual, “you make apps look pretty right?” – However, a lot of our work is about relationships.”

What are some of the common misconceptions about working as UI/UX Designer?

A lot of people think of our work as mainly visual, “you make apps look pretty right?” – However a lot of our work is about relationships. 

We need to fully understand and empathise with our client’s needs and struggles in order to craft the best experience possible, it can be beautiful aesthetically but if the product doesn’t generate value to our customers it won’t work. Building Relationships is the key.

Oftentimes people also think that once the product is released, the job is done. But for us it’s a never ending task, once we deliver, the cycle starts all over again. #kaizen

Was working in tech something you dreamed about doing as a kid, if not what was?

It was, however as a kid I was always thinking about computers mainly not design, I was fascinated with computers and video games.

I thought I was going to follow the IT path but then I discovered CorelDraw & Photoshop at school and it was over. Design became my thing.

“... I came here to study and ultimately fell in love with this magical land and decided to stay here.”

Tell us a little bit more about your career journey and ultimately about how you ended up working at Parrot Analytics? 

I’m from “the land of coffee” - Colombia. I came to Aotearoa when I was 16 years old after finishing high school.

NZ has been a powerhouse of creative design for years, so I came here to study and ultimately fell in love with this magical land and decided to stay here.

I graduated from AUT’s School of Design and was lucky enough to land an internship at Orion Health. I spent three and half years there and my experience there changed everything for me.

I joined as a Graphic Designer but I got to spend a lot of time with their UX team, where I first learned about UX and the ins-and-outs of product design. I was hooked.

I then join a small startup called vWork where I learned a lot of new useful skills around the motion design space but also about the dynamics of working on a startup.

After two years, I decided to try out the agency world so I joined Amplifier as a Lead of Digital.

There I learned a lot not only on the creative/brand side but in terms of how to deal with pressure. Working on multiple projects for different clients/industries (all at the same time in a very short timeframe) was new for me but incredibly useful for my career.

After a couple of years on the agency, the opportunity to work at Parrot Analytics came up. It was my dream job, not only due to the nature of their products but also the industry and their position in the market. I joined as a Senior UI/UX Designer.

One thing I didn’t expect was to encounter such a wonderful work culture.

A place full of amazing, talented people who love what they do and want to be the best in the world! – I really consider myself extremely lucky, not only because every day I do what I love the most, but because I’m changing the world surrounded by great friends.

“... find your true passion and picture it as your life, not just work.”

Do you have any advice for people considering tech as a career path and how they might get there quicker?

Make sure that you are not considering tech because it is the new hot path to success and money. Be honest with yourself, there are many roles in tech so find your true passion and picture it as your life, not just work.

I think getting familiar with the culture of the tech world will definitely help too. One of the key differentiators is the way tech companies work/function. Learning and understanding can help you make a decision and also prepare yourself for the journey.

Lastly, Parrot Analytics is set to start growing quickly. What kind of candidates do you think Parrot Analytics is looking for in terms of experience, attitude, and character?

We are looking for people that truly love what they do. I feel that attitude and character are more valuable to us than experience.

If you are brave, passionate, determined, and love a challenge? Hit us up!

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