UX Research: Personas & Journey Mapping

Creating a Persona

Based on an interview with a young father, I created a persona. I listed the personal information and identified a quote that captures the essence of what the person feels, thinks, and does. Moreover, I developed a personal profile, identified key attributes, domain specific attributes related to preparing weeknight meals, described his internet usage, and his goals.

Creating a Journey Map

Next, based on the interview, I created a journey map that captures all of the things the father thinks, does, says, and feels at critical points throughout the weekday dinner making experience. The journey begins when he picks the kids up from their after-school program and concludes when he meets them upstairs for bedtime.

Based on the persona and journey maps, I identified three opportunity areas. Opportunity areas are a combination of a specific user, a need, and a meaningful insight. A signature of a good opportunity area is one that excites people to generate ideas and offers key insight into a person’s life that we could not have had had we not spent time talking with people in context.


Making the persona was a bit frustrating because it was an academic test rather than a real-life situation. In a real-life scenario, I’d imagine there would be some sort of prompting by a company that I work for about what products and service areas to focus on. While this was frustrating, it was also interesting to approach the problem with such an open-minded viewpoint.

Making the Journey Map was very intuitive and easy for getting the ideas. However, the visualization portion was a major challenge- I didn’t find any templates for a journey map that gave a suitable example of how to display this information. Instead I combined ideas from several journey maps and came up with a result that I’m happy with. I added an element of time-line, which I personally find helpful because of the time sensitive nature of the dinner making process.

Opportunity areas came fairly naturally, and some are even explicitly mentioned by Dennis in his interview- such as him wanting to have the kids say grace and also him wanting them to help around the kitchen a little more in simple ways.

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