This week, we caught up with Liv Henrich, one of Squiz New Zealand’s User Researchers in the Discovery Team.
Squiz: In which office are you based Liv?
Henrich: Wellington, New Zealand
How long have you had the pleasure of working for Squiz?
4 years, but for the first year I was working part time, while I was finishing my masters.
What was your path here?
I was doing my masters in psychology in Wellington, planning to go back to Europe at the end of that. At the time Pat (managing director in the NZ office) was keen to start a UX department in NZ. He came across some of my research on the effects of framing on perception and thought I could apply my research skills at Squiz to establish a UX research practise in NZ. So I didn’t leave and stayed in New Zealand instead.
What do you get up to on an average day?
Drink coffee, design some surveys, analyse some data, drink some more coffee, at lunch time, if I am lucky I get to walk Luca (the office dog and chief happiness officer) around the waterfront, write reports and recommendations, drink some more coffee…
What do you love about your role?
Gaining a deep understanding of what users are struggling with, having those conversations and then translating that into some kind of solution, which will help both our client and the user achieve their goals. At a general level I think this may be called problem solving.
What's helped you to get to where you are now?
A sense of adventure, meeting interesting people, good luck, opportunities and drive to learn new skills.
Is there any advice that you’d give anyone who wanted to do something similar?
Think to yourself: Am I a good listener? Do others like talking to me and telling me about what is moving them? Or do I prefer talking and giving out advice? Active listening is a skill that is often overlooked and underrated, but it is so key to this kind of job.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
Well, that changed on a yearly basis and there is no real theme that I can detect. The ones I remember most distinctly: 1. Painter/ artist, 2. Helicopter pilot or paramedic on a search and rescue team, 3. Psychologist for children in conflict areas, 4. Documentary film journalist
What one thing do you wish you had (skill, thing or other)?
When you’re not being a full time Squizzer, where do you most like to be?
On a Lavender farm in the south of France, alternatively watching the sunset on the beach in a small town called Egmont aan Zee in the Netherlands, exploring new places whilst travelling, reading, learning languages, taking time for cooking, having interesting discussions over the dinner table, walking a lot, spending time with my dog Luca… the options are endless.
Cats or dogs?
Dogs!! Except some select cats that have won my heart over (probably because they behave like dogs than cats…) such as Leonidas, Siggy (may he rest in peace) and Bilbo and Frodo.
Blues, Chiefs, Crusaders, Highlanders or Hurricanes (or couldn’t care less)?
Could I choose The Highlander instead?
Coffee or tea?
Coffee. Any time of the day. The other day someone asked me the trickiest ‘would you rather’ question I have yet. It was: “If you had to, would rather give up coffee or chocolate?” What would you answer? A dilemma, if you, like me, love both of these delicious treats (and anyone who has met me knows that I always carry a block of Lindt 90% cocoa in my handbag). My answer had to be chocolate, however, I simply cannot imagine a life without coffee. Perhaps that makes me an addict, but I am ok with that.
Summer or winter?
Summer (at its best at 25 degrees Celsius, 45% relative humidity, sunny) all year round. I love living outside, especially having dinner with friends in the evening sun. Though I wouldn’t mind a real German style winter, with snow, cosy evenings in front of the fire, Christmas markets and Glühwein for one week around Christmas time. Then back to summer.
Wine or beer?
Montepulciano d’Abruzzo. Try it if you can, it is delicious and tastes like Italian summers.
Town or country?
Country (but close enough to get to a nice town)
Finally, why Squiz?
It’s a family like environment and I enjoy the kind and friendly people I get to work with. It’s also nice to think that there are other Squiz-family members all over the globe.
Liv will be tweeting her week at work at @lifeatsquiz from 22-26 August - follow along to see what she gets up to during the week.