UX Cake


Being in UX at a Startup

Season 1, Ep. 22

I recently joined a start-up called Spruce Up so topics related to startups have been top-of-mind for me. In this episode of UX Cake, I am joined by Phillip Hunter of Pulse Labs and Cassie Wallender of Invio, Inc. We really enjoyed recording live in Seattle and had a candid conversation about the challenges and benefits of being in UX at a start-up and shared the techniques we have found effective while working in this type of start-up environment. 

Phillip Hunter is VP of Products at Pulse Labs in Seattle, WA, and has designed and created strategy for voice-based products and services for hundreds of customer service systems, and has led, managed, inspired, trained, and mentored hundreds of UX and product management professionals. 

Cassie Wallender is the Co-Founder and Chief Product Officer at Invio, Inc in Seattle. Cassie is an effective senior contributor and team manager in both product and design for several successful startups (iLike, acquired by Myspace for over $20m in 2009, and Appature, acquired by IMS Health for over $100m in 2013). 

Show Highlights:

  • Challenges of working at a UX start-up including often being the only designer, you often don’t have customers or users yet, and if you do have customers, you may have a very limited budget/resources.
  • No one hands you a charter stating the problems, objectives, and how to solve them. Everything is ambiguous, and you have to be a part of the discovery/inquiry/problem-solving processes.
  • Everything is on the line while working at a UX and pressure can build. The investors, founders, and employees are all counting on you. 
  • Despite all the challenges, we do it because of the special rewards and potential, and opportunities to be part of something new, and important.
  • Techniques we use to address the challenges of startups.
  • Leigh, Phillip, and Cassie tell their very different stories of how they got into startups.
  • Check out Angel Lists or Techstars to find start-up job opportunities.


Spruce Up

Pulse Labs

Invio, Inc.

@Cassie on Twitter

You can now support the future of the UX Cake podcast and be a part of the UX Cake community at Patreon.com/uxcake 

Connect with UX Cake!





More Episodes


Making Space For Meaning and Success with Tutti Taygerly

Season 3, Ep. 58
As human beings, it is embedded in us to seek purpose in everything we do. We want to do meaningful work that affects other people or pursue the passion within us.But many people wonder, is it too much to ask for an opportunity to work on something valuable?In today's episode, we are joined by Tutti Taygerly, a Leadership Coach, speaker, and author of the book “Make Space To Lead: Break patterns to find flow and focus on what matters” Tutti's primary focus is to help high-achievers make space for sustainable success, so we dive deep into conversations about making space for the things you want to do and achieve. We delve into how we can create more fulfilling work and build a career that is sustainable, by making space for what matters most to us, and how you can navigate through your current environment to maximize your creativity. Join us in this jam-packed episode filled with actionable tips on how to deal with the "Achievement Monster" and what steps you can take to create your space and utilize it the best way possible.Tutti coaches cofounders and tech leaders to embrace their unique leadership style to achieve professional impact and a sustainable company culture. She focuses on working with women, people of color, and immigrants. Previously she was a design leader at design firms, startups, and large companies including Disney and Facebook. Tutti writes for Harvard Business Review, Business Insider,  and Fast Company and her book Make Space to Lead shows high achievers how to reframe our relationship to work.  Connect with Tuttihttps://www.tuttitaygerly.com/https://www.linkedin.com/in/tuttitaygerlyhttps://www.instagram.com/tutti/Connect with UX Cake