Product Thinking
Prioritizing Accessibility with Dave Dame
September 8, 2021
Dave Dame is Director of Accessibility at Microsoft. He has extensive experience in design thinking, product management, and agile delivery. Dave joins Melissa Perri on this week’s Product Thinking podcast show to discuss how making the workplace accessible and inclusive to employees with disabilities is a crucial first step in making truly accessible products.  Here are some key points you’ll hear Melissa and Dave talk about in this episode: Dave's role at Microsoft, and how he got involved in product. [2:25] Dave helps product managers understand the diversity of their users, to ensure that they're creating products that are accessible. Product managers and designers should not be designing for people with disabilities, but with people with disabilities. "There's a difference between meeting the standard and having incredible experiences. We don't want to just meet their needs, we want to give them phenomenal experiences where they become champions of our product," Dave tells Melissa. [6:16] Designing with persons with disabilities demands that product managers educate themselves on multiple uses of disabilities, and the multiple types of disabilities. It also means learning what tools are being used by persons with disabilities to manipulate your product, and understanding what your competitors are doing. [7:50] The first step to making sure you're being inclusive to everybody is to hire people with disabilities. [12:50] Everyone is going to experience some form of disability at some point in their life, so product managers need to build products that can be used by many different inputs, and in many different ways, or else they're going to limit who can use their product. [15:47] Focus on the usability life cycle instead of the product life cycle. If product managers don't start thinking about that now, they're going to lose long term loyalty and won't be able to support the modern places that use their product. Product managers have to think about it as the inevitable use case for everybody instead of a single unique use case. [18:00] Any company that is using its accessibility capability as a marketing edge, is a company that's doing it right. [22:21] No two people with the same disability are the same. [28:17] Product leaders and managers need to be mindful of individuals with invisible disabilities, and need to be better at being proactive. They need to make sure that no one is being left behind. Different thinking is needed to push towards the future. The only way this can happen is through equitable platforms that allow for diverse thought to exist. [29:32] When you speak up for your particular needs it becomes relevant for other people in different situations. Disabled people should not have to suffer in silence. [33:07] Resources Dave Dame | LinkedIn | Twitter
Dave Dame is Director of Accessibility at Microsoft. He has extensive experience in design thinking, product management, and agile delivery. Dave joins Melissa Perri on this week’s Product Thinking podcast show to discuss how making the workplace accessible and inclusive to employees with disabilities is a crucial first step in making truly accessible products.  Here are some key points you’ll hear Melissa and Dave talk about in this episode: Dave's role at Microsoft, and how he got involved in product. [2:25] Dave helps product managers understand the diversity of their users, to ensure that they're creating products that are accessible. Product managers and designers should not be designing for people with disabilities, but with people with disabilities. "There's a difference between meeting the standard and having incredible experiences. We don't want to just meet their needs, we want to give them phenomenal experiences where they become champions of our product," Dave tells Melissa. [6:16] Designing with persons with disabilities demands that product managers educate themselves on multiple uses of disabilities, and the multiple types of disabilities. It also means learning what tools are being used by persons with disabilities to manipulate your product, and understanding what your competitors are doing. [7:50] The first step to making sure you're being inclusive to everybody is to hire people with disabilities. [12:50] Everyone is going to experience some form of disability at some point in their life, so product managers need to build products that can be used by many different inputs, and in many different ways, or else they're going to limit who can use their product. [15:47] Focus on the usability life cycle instead of the product life cycle. If product managers don't start thinking about that now, they're going to lose long term loyalty and won't be able to support the modern places that use their product. Product managers have to think about it as the inevitable use case for everybody instead of a single unique use case. [18:00] Any company that is using its accessibility capability as a marketing edge, is a company that's doing it right. [22:21] No two people with the same disability are the same. [28:17] Product leaders and managers need to be mindful of individuals with invisible disabilities, and need to be better at being proactive. They need to make sure that no one is being left behind. Different thinking is needed to push towards the future. The only way this can happen is through equitable platforms that allow for diverse thought to exist. [29:32] When you speak up for your particular needs it becomes relevant for other people in different situations. Disabled people should not have to suffer in silence. [33:07] Resources Dave Dame | LinkedIn | Twitter

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