The User Journey of A Refugee – Stephanie Gasche, Agile on the Beach 2019

Watch Stephanie Gasche discuss how she introduced an Agile Mindset and its methods to the non-profit sector at her Agile On The Beach 2019 talk.

Between 2015 and 2016, over 130,000 asylum seekers requested asylum in Austria – taking the country of 8.7 million people completely by surprise. As politicians were reluctant to act, civil society jumped in and founded hundreds of grassroots initiatives and projects intended to alleviate the integration process into Austrian society. However, seeing as there was no central coordination, high language barriers and little marketing budget, there was a missing link between the thousands of interested refugees and the surplus of offers by civil society. This is where “I am Refugee“ stepped in – our non-political, online platform that holistically depicts the user journey of a refugee on his path to integration in Austrian society.

In this talk, Stephanie discusses how they went from domain name to wireframes to a registered society and an up-and-running website within just 4 months. How they gained and integrated our users’ feedback to grow their product portfolio from a multilingual website to social media channels, an Android App and now even Google courses and workshops. Stephanie shows how a strong vision, transparency, team work, iterations and pull principle are the best mechanisms for managing and leading an intercultural team of volunteers with different motives for over 18 months. Learn about their main impediments ranging from governmental funding to trolling due to disapproval from the far-right.

Most importantly, this talk shows you how Agile methods are great for starting a successful initiative in a low-to zero-budget sector, but how the Agile mindset behind a product and its focus on empowerment can be the most valuable addition to an entire sector.

Originally from Austria, Stephanie has lived, studied and worked in Germany, France, California and the UK. With degrees in English, History and International Business Management, Stephanie’s out-of-the-box thinking and value system led her to join the Agile movement in 2012. Ever since then, she has spread and scaled the Agile mindset and methods such as Scrum, Kanban, Lean Start-Up, Design Thinking in multinational corporations and SMEs in the DACH region.

In recent years, Stephanie has also founded two social impact start-ups and worked as an intercultural trainer in helping refugees with their integration in Austria. These valuable experiences flow into her daily work as an independent Agile Consultant when coaching intercultural and internationally distributed teams.

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