Hello! I’m Lesley Taylor, a digital product specialist based in Silicon Valley, California

My skills range from product ideation, through research, design, & development, to audience growth. Central to this is my belief that a collaborative, person-centered approach is essential for developing meaningful products that improve people’s lives.

Featured Project


    The first step in developing a meaningful, user-centered product is to understand to user. There are many assumptions and stereotypes about stroke survivors (e.g., they are elderly and technology averse) and few apps addressing their needs. To better understand the current use of technology and opportunities for app development, I built relationships with the stroke community and utilized Facebook for both quantitative and qualitative research.

    Findings from this research indicated that a high percentage of survivors use apps frequently, but very few use apps to manage their health. In my opinion, good research answers some questions, but demands the answers to more. If survivors use technology, why don’t they use it to manage health? Why is there more of a need for peer-support than for rehabilitation? How can we leverage technology to address the diverse needs of stroke survivors?



    To improve Apple watch integration for the StrokeCoach app, I analyzed the consumer landscape for the top performing apps (downloads, revenue) and others relevant to the project. This allowed us to identify key features, best practices, and opportunities for improvement. A competitor deep-dive provide additional insight into web and app-based rehabilitation after stroke.

    Furthermore, this industry research supported the theoretical framework of self-efficacy to facilitate health behavior change. Academic research provided support for notifcation frequency, content type, and guided the use of psychometrics. 


    With user, industry, and academic research as a guide, I developed an integrated engagement strategy for the iPhone app and Apple watch. Based on self-efficacy and behavior change theory, the engagement strategy included personalized notifications to motivate users to engage with the app and adhere to rehabilitation.

    The use of enhanced notifications, generic notifications and sms-based engagement allow us to test which strategies are most effective, and for whom. Further, generic notifications act as a control condition, which is especially important in research. 


    App abandonment and adherence can be highly problematic in mhealth. Positively engaging and building rapport with clients is essential, starting with the onboarding process. Therefore, I integrated welcome videos, contextual help, and motivational interviewing techniques to create user buy-in and engagement. This can offset important, but sometimes laborious, onboarding tasks necessary for research or clinical applications (e.g., completing surveys, assessments, medical history).

    As drop-out during onboarding is a main concern,  I developed a time-sensitive notification strategy, which I prototyped with Sketch. The goal of the notification strategy and decision tree was to alerted team members to potential dropouts, while also delivering automated notifications. Although more labor intensive than fully automated onboarding, this is a feasible strategy for interventions that are integrated into care rather than fully standalone.


    I concluded my work on StrokeCoach by extending my initial user research into the clinical research setting. This new research utilized the REDcap survey tool to ensure secure collection of informed consent and user data, aligning with Stanford’s internal review board standards (e.g., HIPPA, PHI). The goal of this research was to formalize initial user reseach and build a pipeline for future user testing and study recruitment.

    As study recruitment is an ongoing challenge in research, I developed recruitment resources to help researchers reach the stroke community. This included print flyers and email newsletters for both in-person and online recruitment. I also recommended the use of a CRM (e.g, Mailchimp, Constant Contact) to simplify outreach for the broader stroke recovery group, including StrokeCoach.


There is the ideal process and then there is reality. Reality is often determined by resources: time, people, money. I use the following process as a guide, not a master. Whatever my role or size of project, when applied flexibly, this process allows me to stay focused on helping people reach their goals.

You can’t solve a problem when you don’t know what it is. Learn about the needs of different stakeholders (users, team, company), evaluate resources, and do your homework (research). Most important: understand the user.


Ideation sounds more fun than planning, but the plan is the foundation for ideas. Ideation is the balance between blue sky thinking and practical application. Most important: ideate with the user in mind (not the ego).


Innovation is creation. It’s the art and science of designing and developing a tangible product that meets a real need. Most important: create a user-centered product that empowers them.


It makes zero difference in the world if you build a life changing product that never reaches the audience. Fortunately, user research not only provides a foundation for development, but for building relationships with your audience too. Most important: don’t sell users a product,  sell them solution.


Effective management is turning ideas into reality. It is working with people respectfully, using resources efficiently, and delivering products effectively. Most important: get the best product to users with optimal cost and timing.


Always be testing. Test your assumptions, ideas, research, products, marketing strategy, business, and test your tests. Test, iterate, repeat. Most important: involve  your users throughout to ensure they always stay the focus.

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