The Lean User Research Workshop

The fast adoption of the Lean Startup management approach among startups, enterprises, and government agencies worldwide has brought to light new (and renewed) user research methods. These methods help answer burning questions people, teams, and organizations have about their customers. A key aspect of Lean User Research is that it creates a shared understanding among research stakeholders and that it provides fast, reliable results.

This workshop will walk attendees through a lean user research process starting from understanding what it is, what it is good for, when to use and not use it, through quickly finding participants for research, to actual implementation of methods.

In the spirit of Lean Startup’s Validated Learning principle, workshop attendees will spend most time on practicing lean research methods to validate a problem users care about, a market that has that problem, and a product that solves the problem for that market. The workshop will wrap up with a Design Studio exercise to build shared understanding and research buy-in among stakeholders.

Workshop attendees can choose to practice their own real projects or case studies provided by the workshop facilitator.

The workshop is limited to 36 participants.

Workshop outline

Day 1

  • Introduction to Lean Startup
  • Principles of Lean User Research
  • Shared understanding
  • When to use Lean Research
  • Finding participants using social media
  • Exercise 1: Assumptions and hypotheses
  • Exercise 2: Problem validation with Experience Sampling
  • Exercise 3: Problem discovery with the 5 Whys technique



  • Exercise 4: Market validation with Concierge & Fake Doors Tests
  • Exercise 5: Product validation with A/B Testing
  • Lean Research reporting techniques
  • The Rainbow Spreadsheet
  • Exercise 5: Design Studio Methodology
  • Exercise 6: Storytelling
  • Lean literature & resources

Who is the workshop for?


  • People involved in product development (designers, developers, engineers, product managers, startup founders, entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs)
  • C-level executives who wish their organizations improve how they learn from users/customers
  • Newcomers to the UX world


  • Any size
  • Interested in, intrigued by, or passionate about Lean Startup or Agile development
  • Would like to become more user-centered
  • Would like to add to their toolkit new, more nimble, less traditional user research methods

Required equipment

  • A stable wi-fi connection for all attendees and instructor.
  • A great set of speakers to which I can hook my Macbook Air. The workshop introduces several videos and we will need an excellent sound system.
  • A room organized in group seating. Each group is 4-6 people. Here is an example for a space and setup that works well:
  • Office equipment based on this list (notice that some items would need to be purchased in larger numbers based on the number of attendees):
  • Free wall (or window) space to hang deliverables (at least 6'x6' or 2x2m per group). Here is an example of what we do during the workshop:
Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 5.06.45 PM.png

Attendee requirements

  • Attendees must bring a laptop.
  • Have Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus accounts (not a must).
  • Have a Google Adwords account (free, no need to run any campaign).
  • Have a Google Analytics account (free, we will use a tool in it, no need to have a website).

About The Facilitator

Tomer is Head of User Experience at WeWork in New York City leading a team that designs work and living spaces, communities, and services around the world. Formerly a senior user experience researcher at Google Search, Tomer is the author of the book, Validating Product Ideas through Lean User Research (2016) and author of, It’s Our Research: Getting stakeholder buy-in for user experience research projects (2012). He founded and led The Israeli Chapter of the User Experience Professionals’ Association and has been preaching and teaching UX at Google’s LaunchPad program, a bootcamp for early-stage startups around the world, in conferences, and atTreehouse and General Assembly. Tomer holds a master’s degree in Human Factors in Information Design from Bentley University in Waltham, MA. He is @tsharon on Twitter and Instagram.