Seth at the top of Mount Haleakala (a volcano) in Maui, Hawaii, after a hike!
This month we shine the spotlight on our world traveler, hiker, dad of a toddler, and UX/UI Designer – Seth Thomas!
Sandra: How long have you been working with Geoforce?
Seth: I started right before Thanksgiving 2020, so about 1 Year and 2 months.
Sandra: What do you do at Geoforce?
Seth: My title is UX / UI Designer. User Experience is still a fairly new discipline at Geoforce, but my job is to empathize with our users and to understand the pain points in their workflow and utilize that to increase the usability, accessibility, and intuitiveness of our application. We do that by conducting interviews with our customers, surveys, and inspecting behavioral data in our application (E.g., Google Analytics and others). We then use those insights to build wireframes and prototypes to test our theories and iterate until we get to the visual interface design and user-flow that you both see and experience in our applications.
Sandra: What are your hobbies outside of work?
Seth: Does being Dad to a two-year-old count? I’d say that takes up most of my time. Other than that, the past couple of years I’ve really started to gain an appreciation for reading simply for pleasure and discovering what genres and authors I enjoy. My wife and I really enjoy traveling and hiking together. Prior to getting married, I’d only left the US once to Cozumel and barely traveled outside of Texas but one of the first things we did was get my passport. In those 6 years, we’ve gone to Santiago, Chile a few times, hiked in the Andes, Germany, Portland, Hong Kong, Thailand, Chicago, Hawaii, and Guanajuato Mexico. And last year we went on our first vacation with our daughter to Maui and hiked Haleakalā (inside a volcano crater).
Sandra: If you had to choose your last meal on Earth, what would you eat and why?
Seth: Either tacos from Tacos La Banqueta with the green habanero sauce or pizza from Mama’s Pizza (both are in Arlington). Maybe finish it off with some strawberry cheesecake ice cream from Mad Mike’s.
Sandra: What is your favorite attribute of Geoforce and why?
Seth: Geoforce is at an interesting stage, and I think my favorite attribute right now is a desire to improve. I see that in the software we are building, our financial goals, our new innovative hardware, changing processes, and hiring new expertise we’ve never had, both at an individual contributor level and at a leadership level.
Sandra: If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
Seth: I have a long bucket-list of places I’d like to travel to, but I think I’d have to go with Japan. The landscape is beautiful, the architecture and culture are fascinating, the people are so friendly and polite, everything is clean, the technology and public transportation is advanced. And I’d probably make a stop to visit the Studio Ghibli Museum.
Sandra: What have you gained from working at Geoforce?
Seth: A lot. Prior to Geoforce my background as a designer was much heavier on the visual side either doing branding, advertising, or supporting marketing departments. Geoforce first hired me as a UI designer and trusted that my skills would translate to a product team, with the understanding that I had goals to transition to a User Experience role. My boss has done a great job of mentoring and guiding my career in that direction. I think the most impactful thing about Geoforce for me has been experiencing what good leadership looks like and what it’s like to be trusted and given the tools and space to work. I feel like my voice and opinion matter in the room regardless of title.
Sandra: Did you make any new year’s resolutions? If so, what?
Seth: Not really. But around the new year my wife and I made plans to find a babysitter that we trust to watch our daughter so that we could go on a date at least once a month. So how about that, once a month dates with my wife.