Hi, I’m Clem. 👋 I help organizations solve customer and business problems through the lens of content and systems thinking.
Currently I’m a Senior Content Strategist at IntelliBridge.
People hire your product or service to get things done. Your content acts as their tour guide.
And behind the scenes, that piece of content is stored as data. We need to design that, too.
I specialize in using language and data to solve customer and business problems. I enjoy creating systems around data as much as writing for interfaces and conducting mixed methods research.
Most recently, I helped government organizations design products and services at ICF Next. As a content strategist, I helped organizations improve how they communicate with their audiences through websites, apps, software, and conversational interfaces. I usually have a hand in user research, content design, information architecture, SEO, UX writing, and product strategy.
Before this, I was a UX Analyst on the Conversational AI team at Capital One. As a freelance content strategy and user experience consultant, I worked with startups and nonprofits including CMX Media and Reach for Change. In 2017, I received my Master’s in Human Centered Design & Engineering from the University of Washington.
Okay then. What is it like to work with you?
I believe in designing content-first, co-creating solutions, and working iteratively with both big data and thick data.
What that might look like will change based on the project, but this is what you can expect:
- Start with clear goals. What’s the purpose? Where is the need coming from? I ask questions so I understand your concerns and outcomes you want to reach.
- Solve for real human needs and contexts. People’s intents, motivations, and expectations shape their experience with your digital products. I start by understanding your audience’s deepest needs while keeping your goals in mind.
- Collaborate with diverse, cross-functional team members. Best designs don’t come from working in silos. A diverse team helps us avoid cultural and ethical blindspots by challenging our own biases.
- Think in systems but execute on the details. Create unique, differentiated value by focusing on where business goals meet user needs. That’s where the opportunity is to make the biggest impact.
- Design the conversation first. When a conversation is clear and meaningful, it’s intuitive. Words don’t solve everything but they are the cheapest, lowest-risk way to prototype solutions.
- Find momentum in learning. Although we won’t know everything in advance, I believe in figuring things out together. It’s better to test our assumptions and hone in on what’s working.
- Let the best ideas win. While constructive debates and critiques can move an idea forward, egos and politics can get in the way. The best ideas produce the best outcomes for everyone involved.
Regardless of whether we work together, I care about:
- building trusting and authentic relationships
- practicing deep listening
- balancing competing business requirements and audience needs
- leading inclusive, participatory, and sustainable design practices
- bridging gaps between design, engineering, and product teams
- managing up & across, empowering others’ successes first
But what do you do, exactly?
- Content Strategy
- Information Architecture
- User Experience Research
- UX Writing
- Data Modeling
- Website Redesign
- Content Migration
- Governance Planning
- Search Engine Optimization
- Community Engagement Strategy
Why do you care about content in design so much?
People hire your product to get things done. And your content acts like a tour guide to help them through each interaction and accomplish their goals in the simplest way possible.
Writing is a design skill, whether it’s on the interface or behind the scenes. Writing is how we understand complex scenarios and explore different points of view. Writing helps us understand what our customers want, what’s getting in their way, and how we can help.
Design is not just how something looks. As designers, we get to shape what matters. As technology becomes more personalized and automated, it’s even more important for us to speak up and create spaces for people to be human.
We need to humanize the data we collect and use to design experiences. Content is data. Words are data. That Spotify song you’re listening to–is data. What people see is supported by the data structures underneath. That’s why we need to design both the content AND the data that it transforms into. Otherwise all we will get is a collection of features, not human-centered outcomes.
Who are you outside of work?
I’m an amateur cook and an architecture enthusiast. I also like outdoorsy stuff like hiking and city biking. These days, I try to enjoy simpler pleasures like reading in the park.
I like building communities in my spare time. Over the years, I’ve volunteered for TEDxMinneapolis, User Experience Professional Association, World Information Architecture Day, World Usability Day, Ashoka, and various UX Meetups. It’s a great way to meet a lot of wonderful people and pay it forward. We all stand on shoulders of giants.