Q&A: Tansy Murray

Get to know Tansy Murray, Product Design Director at Workplace, and find out what her favorite Workplace feature is, how she got into product design, and her career advice for those who’d like to follow in her footsteps.

SPOTLIGHT Q&A | 3 MINUTE READ

What do you do at Workplace?

I’m the Product Design Director for Workplace. I’m just four months in, so I'm still finding my feet and getting to know the awesome team who design and build this product.

What’s your favorite part of your job?

There are so many great elements to my job but I think my favorite is the opportunity to work with and support a very talented group of product designers. It’s a privilege to work with such an amazing crew.

What’s been your proudest Workplace moment so far?

Over and over again, I’ve seen cross-functional teams work together on complex problems to find solutions that go beyond mere problem solving, by providing joy in the smallest interactions. Seeing teams go above and beyond makes me really proud.

What's your favorite Workplace feature?

Our Live Video feature is awesome. It enables leaders to talk to their organizations in a way that humanizes their communication. Leaders can broadcast anything, from company announcements to panel discussions. There’s no fussy video set up - all you need is a phone or a computer. It’s an incredibly powerful feature, which makes everyone feel part of their community at work.

What inspired you to pursue a career path in product design?

I’ve always been interested in the experience of a product rather than just the product itself. The really interesting questions to ask are things like ‘how does the interaction with this product feature make you feel?’. Those are probably the most overlooked questions. Product design is all about the experience of the product, and solving those experience problems was always what drew me to product design.

What's the biggest misconception people have about product design?

It’s really around the role of product designers. People think that product designers just help customers complete a task. That they design a product to help customers get from A to Z. Actually, the role of a product designer is to design products that customers love. To craft end-to-end experiences that go beyond their function to resonate emotionally with customers. The ability for a user to complete a task is crucial, of course, however, we need to go further and make sure our user has a positive emotional experience too.

What are the essential characteristics of great design?

Great design is effective, impactful and, above all, transformational. Great design has the power to change the ‘known’. Great design can change how we see and interact with the world. It can add new meaning, change behaviors and bring new richness to our lives. As designers, that’s what we strive for. We don’t always get there, but it’s certainly the goal.

What makes a great design team?

Great design teams have to be multidisciplinary. They are made up of product designers, content designers, user researchers, experience strategists – all pulling together to deliver the best possible experiences for customers.

What advice would you give someone who’d like to work at Meta?

I would say, be prepared to be empowered! Lots of companies talk about ‘empowering teams’ but rarely deliver on that promise. At Meta, teams are genuinely empowered to drive product strategy. As a manager, my role is to support, not to instruct. But with empowerment comes accountability, so be prepared to take ownership. It’s challenging, but incredibly rewarding.

What piece of tech can you not live without?

My Portal! I use it all the time for video calls, both for work and for personal life. The smart camera is incredible. It pans and zooms to keep you in frame. So I can be making dinner in the kitchen while chatting to family overseas. It definitely helps us to feel closer and seems to narrow the gap between us. I love it!

What would we most likely find you doing on the weekend?

I have two young kids, so lots of silliness happens at the weekend. We live near the beach, so we go kayaking, swimming and generally goof around.

What would be the coolest thing to experience in the metaverse?

The metaverse won’t be built overnight and it will take many more companies to build it than Meta alone. I have no doubt that it will be incredibly exciting to move between worlds in the metaverse but honestly, I think in the future, the ability to feel connected to people who are not physically present may be the game changer. Connecting people is in the DNA of Meta, so I’m really excited to see how the metaverse will bring us closer, even when we’re far apart.

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