Samsung Visual Display was the worlds largest manufacturer of displays and TVs. They wanted to enter into the advertisement revenue arena and created our team to start a stealth division to create a monetization strategy that spanned all of Samsungs consumer devices starting with our SmartTVs.
Understand the scope and guide the user from the start to the end goal. Design with intention and make the user flow effortless and enjoyable.
Knowing where to start is key to the experience. Clearly telling the user what is important through good design and hierarchy. Being consistent will help the user understand design.
Ego has no place. Start with the user's needs and craft contextual experiences. Clearly, define the design's objectives and solve them first. Be accurate and concise.
Sweat the details. The more effort put into the design, the less effort a user has to take to understand it. Design intuitive and universal experiences without sacrificing quality.
Keep it simple stupid. Show the user only what they need when they need it. Stay honest and keep your intentions transparent. The user should always know what they are getting into.
Delight the user and exceed their expectations. Spend time designing solid experiences, and then take the time to make them extraordinary.
Samsung VD had no prior experience with building an Ad Stack or iterative development. Its business was a - build it and ship it, build something new model. This also meant that Design typically was not at the forefront of the process as everything was based on what our hardware teams were able to deliver. Samsung was organized into product silos with each discipline traditionally reporting into a different business unit.
Many of these issues were compounded by the fact that Samsung is a Korean company which introduced language and timezone challenges into an already challenging environment of a stealth startup within a large company.
Samsung had no centralized design language between the marketing face that North American consumers were familiar with and the in product UI they used.
Our team started very small with a core group of one member for each discipline (Product, Design, Engineering, Business Development). Our team consisted of seasoned veterans from tech giants like Microsoft and Google, and veterans from the Ad business like Omnicom.
I worked with my team to cultivate a design first culture by holding regular design reviews and talks while keeping an open door policy to involve the entire team. I developed a design workflow and provided my Product and Engineering partners with an overview to help them estimate the cost of work items. We set up sprints and employed different
As we hired more people to join our team, I interviewed engineering candidates for their front-end acumen as well as their design thinking. For PM candidates I focused on their thought process and how the thought about abstract concepts and problem-solving. We cultivated a design culture, and later I was able to leverage this support to better position our design team within the company to take on new challenges.
As we started building our products I tapped into the work various other teams were doing to develop a design language and system that was scalable and allowed us to react to what the company was doing. We took what we designed and built and influence the rest of the company, introducing it as the basis of what is now the SmartTV design language. We established our Ad business as the baseline for future UI iterations while developing a release and iterate ideology across Samsung VD.
I was employee #4 of our startup stealth team and the founding designer. As apart of the team leadership, I interviewed and hired Product Managers, Front-End Engineers, and Designers. I led our multidisciplinary design team and the companies design related ad business. I worked alongside multiple teams in Korea and the USA to ensure business and product requirements were met while keeping our consumers front and center.
I led the companies roadmap vision while exploring different business areas we could enter to compete and revolutionize.