Change the World, One Kid at a Time: Parenting with Design Thinking

By Wendy Nyx

Elevator Pitch

After 2 decades in UX and nearly as long as parents, we’re finding there are benefits in applying strategies from our work lives to our family lives, and vice versa. We’ll look at a mix of Design Thinking practices and top parenting strategies to help us be better parents AND designers.


As UX designers we have the responsibility to apply what we know beyond our 9-5 workday. Everywhere we go we look at the world and have ideas of how we can make it better. We are in our cars and have at least ten ideas of how the experience of being in it and driving it can be better, from the dashboard layout to the size and placement of the cupholders. We go through ANY airport, and we come out with our long list of no-nos.

So why is it that when we are home, raising our kids, we don’t apply the same kind of critical vigilance in trying to make it a better experience for all? We have the professional know-how, but we are prisoners of cultural and societal norms that have defined the outdated parenting styles we still use.

There is a huge opportunity for us to change the way we parent. Our kids are the consumers of our parenting, usually, the parenting style we inherited or a version of it. As we look back and learn from past mistakes, we can design a better experience for our kids AND the world.


This talk uses role-playing and props. The talk is a minimum of 45 minutes.