Hatch Design Talks 2023





Transitioning from B2C to B2B

Transitioning from B2C to B2B

Luana Moura

Luana Moura

Senior UX Manager at GetYourGuide

Senior UX Manager at GetYourGuide

About the Episode

As a self-taught designer and over 2 decades of experience, Luana speaks about her take on design leadership and the skills needed. We spoke about what it takes to transition into a lead position, the differences between working in a B2B focused project in comparison to a B2C, among some other topics.




Damian: Hi, Luana. How's it going? Thanks for joining me in this small podcast that we do for the speakers of the conference. How are you doing?

Liana: Hello, Damien. I'm very well. Thanks. I'm excited that it's Friday and just very excited with the conference

Damian: I really like your background. And it's not a fake background, right? GetYourGuide has all these really cool styled offices. And I guess you're in Japan.

Liana: Exactly. So I am in the Kyoto room. We have not all the meeting rooms are like that, but we have like at least five meeting rooms that simulate destinations that we have. So this is a beautiful tea room inspired.

Damian: Super cool. So I want to tell me a little bit about your career and what's the path that led you to GetYourGuide? .

Liana: I am actually a self taught designer from the countryside of Brazil and Sao Paulo, and I actually learned to create digital products when I was 13 years old very young, my stepfather had a dev lab, and I learned to code to impress him. And that definitely shaped everything of my life.

 After that, of course, I was not working. I was just helping him on softwares for B2B industries. And over time I started to learn different skills to help even more, and that's touched graphic design, web design in the time, like more than 20 years ago.

And since I was learning on my own I ended up not going to university. And then I started to work with UX, I think around 15 years ago different companies agencies in house and also uh, consultancy. But let's say the last 10 years, my career was more like I was at working at Fjord as an interaction and service designer.

And then I got the opportunity to move to Berlin to work at Zalando and there I started to work as a senior designer and became principal designer. And then I was already exercising the leadership on the team. And I decided to take this step to go to a leadership manager role.

I stayed four years there, and then the beginning of this year, I moved to GetYourGuide to a new experience, completely different type of product, completely different type of industry and customers, and yeah, I'm enjoying a lot of this new team that I'm leading.

Damian: Yeah. It's a super interesting path. The sort of the self taught path. And obviously I think even for those who do study and who do even university and all that kind of stuff, there's, the majority of the learning will always come from what you do at work. But you mentioned that you've been in UX for a fair amount of years and leading teams for a while, but what are the challenges that you notice for people who are, coming now into the discipline or maybe came a few years ago, but now want to transition from individual contributor into like more of a lead position.

Liana: Yeah that's a good question. First, 

Luana: I think that if you want to transition to a leadership role, you will probably already have most of what you need, because Leadership is like an inherent talent. 

Liana: Usually this one thing to support and usually is already there. But of course, there's some challenges that you need to have in mind and things that you should focus on learning.

I think 

Luana: the biggest challenge is that you are in between business and people, and you need to find the right balance on providing what the business needs and supporting and protecting the people. 

Liana: And that is a big challenge because sometimes, for example, when it comes to balancing workloads or balancing what is the best for the company and what is the best for the individual can bring a lot of conflicts and people that make.

That you need to get used on how to solve and be resilient on taking decisions and sticking with them. That's one thing. So I think it's mentally be prepared for very difficult situations and decisions that will be very impactful on. People's lives and also business. Then the second thing I think is the administrative side that I think most people don't think about when they want to go to a leadership role.

There's a lot of administrative work. You need to learn like HR tools. HR rules make very total capacity planning is lots of spreadsheets. And I think that's probably not the most exciting part of the business, but it's something that is very important. You need to be very well organized and in order to make those difficult decisions.

And I think finally, it's the emotional side once again, but it's more on the I am a person that believes on authentic leadership. So I think that everybody every leader should be very vulnerable and open and transparent with your with your team. At the same time, you need to be also resilient and show that you can overcome challenges so you can inspire them.

So you need to be constantly working on emotional and being vulnerable when it's The time, but also being able to get up and and move on and it's part of your team to do the same.

Damian: I think it's a great summary. If I heard correctly you were before at Zalando for like four years. So you must have more or less come to Berlin about a year before the pandemic started. 

Liana: Yeah, actually two years before. Yeah.

Damian: Okay. And how was for you the change in the landscape between. That pre and post pandemic transition. Did you have like a harder time 

Liana: I think the beginning it was not hard time to be honest because I really liked the working from home But then at over time I started to see the challenges and the problems that came with it I For me first, I was leading a team and the whole team was new. I started from scratch and almost all the people I hired was remote. And and they many of them relocated from other countries to Berlin during pandemic. So it was very hard to get them motivated to keep. them engage to create a culture where there was no in person. So that was a challenge.

But then at the same time, I learned so much because when you need to create new ideas to solve problems that you didn't have, you innovate, right? And those learnings, like how to make, I think everybody that That is working hybrid learned that like how to collaborate online, lots of boards and ways to do activities online and so on and create like online culture was an interesting experience.

But now I would say that I will support more this hybrid work culture where you can still see each other in person and then have focused time. Because then if it's one or the other, for me, both of them have just too many cons. That's why I really like that the outcome of this experience was positive in my view, because now we have a little bit of both.

And that's for me, very interesting. 

Damian: Absolutely. And you'll be speaking a Hatch about transitioning from B2C companies into B2B. I don't think there's many designers that actually consider that this is something to think about when applying for their next role, and how the difference between the stakeholders might be what do you say are the biggest differences for those, in one type of company or the other?

Liana: First I need to say that I think every designer can work on any of those domains. And I think that's very important to say, because even though there are people who might have some skills that are that can accelerate their learning. That's definitely true.

But I think solving problems can be done in anywhere in any way. And the method methodology is the same. But I think just the details of the tactics of the methodology would be different. For example, you need, I think, to consider that usually be to be is a So this is a lot of complexity on the system.

If you are a person that has systematic thinking you might be be much more interested about this kind of role where you're going to have to see not only the end user needs but also you need to see the business needs, but business needs are actually business organization.

That means there's different types of profiles of people that you need to be accounting for, and also there are different segments of business. So the complexity of personas or mindsets, or when you talk about our normal methods that we use for segmentation easily go make you overwhelmed. So you need to make very clear strategic decisions on how and who to focus.

And you also need to innovate on, on research, you need to make sure that you are comfortable on finding new ways to solve how to collect easier insights. So I think it's it's something that people should have in mind that if they are, if they want to use acute the methods on. How they are used to and they want don't I'm not very comfortable with changing and innovating on how to execute that then that might be something that might not work for them, right?

Or also if you are a person that would like to explore B2B already understand that you're going to encounter sometimes a product that is not very mature on design. Usually many B2B products don't have as much investment on design. So you're going to encounter a sandbox. For me, it's great because it means I can define everything and there was no definition before me.

My ego loves it. If you're a person that wants to start something from scratch or and you're comfortable in, in having to decide things that people didn't decide that's a great place. For you, and it's about, yeah, and you can always develop these skills, right? Systematic thinking is something that everybody should have.

Some people have more, some people have less. Also I think perfection is being perfectionist as I am. Sometimes actually is on the way on B2B because also any segment of design, right? But I think in this case you need to be comfortable that you need people to be able to execute their tasks.

But sometimes aesthetics might not be the necessary here. Sometimes you need to make trade offs like any other product. 

Damian: No, yeah, absolutely. , I've actually been working on B2B for a while. I think the last year is mostly, and it is a very torn thing because as a designer who wants to make nice things as well, you're but how are you going with this landing page? It's not good enough.

And then you're like. All right, but actually they've been using this and, they've been testing it and it's they, it's not nice looking, but it's doing the job. I should not focus on this and focus on the next thing, but I definitely think it's a personality trait.

And it might be also that potentially B2B companies hiring might not have the same requirements when they're hiring a designer on what they would like, because obviously they're not competing in this, in the same market, right? It's not the same it's not that the product is competing against the next one because of the design.

But it's interesting to see how that goes. How was it particularly for you jumping from like a core D2C company, even if they do obviously have. Also B2B businesses inside, into GetYourGuide, which is more like B2B2C, right? Like

Liana: The lucky part is that, or the interesting part is that at Zalando, I started to put my feet on the B2B2C. , but definitely when I joined GetYourGuide I took some time to adapt but I already had this this love for complexity, I already have all these skills that I think would enable me to get there. The team that that I'm leading here was actually mostly new, so we were all in this together trying to understand the business needs and so on.

And I think the beginning for me was amazing because I'm a very curious person and the fact that I'm in a completely different place is always thrilling for me every time I change in my experience was a very big different so yes, it was difficult, challenging, but also for me, it was very exhilarating because yeah, just everything new and also a bit overwhelming, of course, right?

Let's let me be vulnerable also.

Damian: Nice. Yeah. You've definitely landed it in, one of the best companies in Berlin probably. So that's pretty nice.

Um, Lastly, besides uh, your talk hatch what are you most excited about? to the conference.

Liana: . I'm very excited and because I see that the speakers are super strong. But I'm very curious about I think the AI topics. Because this is completely new for me. And I myself have been currently exploring AI for my day to day work as a leader, but also as a strategist.

It has been amazing. There's a whole talk I can do about that, but I really want to know what I think it was Nadia Piet is to talk about AI. And I think it's Jascha as

Damian: Yeah. From booking. Yeah.

Liana: Yes, and I think those definitely talks I'm going to attend.

Damian: Great. Awesome. Yeah. Definitely. It's a topic that we're all wanting to see what's all about we were very lucky that we could put together a program that has this diversity of voices and people, and, we they senior and maybe like veterans of the industry, as well as people who are like, I'm just figuring this out, but look at this.

It's going to be really interesting. Thank you so much for joining me today. I'm really looking forward to your talk in October and see you very soon.

Liana: Thank you, Damian. That was very fun chat. Thank you so

Damian: Bye.

Liana: you. Bye.

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