Designing for Play – Melissa Pickering on The Product Experience "Product people - Product managers, product designers, UX designers, UX researchers, Business analysts, developers, makers & entrepreneurs November 11 2019 True Disney, interactive play, lego, podcast, product management, The Product Experience, Mind the Product Mind the Product Ltd 470 Melissa Pickering talks on The Product Experience podcast Product Management 1.88

Designing for Play – Melissa Pickering on The Product Experience


Melissa Pickering

If you – or your kids – have ever controlled a Lego creation from an app, then you’re familiar with Melissa Pickering’s work.  Now Lego’s Head of Interactive Play, blending digital and physical play, she got her start as an Imagineer at Disney (designing rollercoasters!) before founding a STEM startup.  She joined us on the podcast to talk about designing for children, ensuring that parents are happy, and designing to ensure that your customers take pride in what they accomplish.

Quote of the Episode

‘Intrinsic motivation’ is one of the key principles of play, another being ‘active engagement’ and another being ‘joyful moments’. And we find that it’s so important when we have kids in an unstructured or free-play scenario, it’s because they are inherently motivated to play just for themselves, they’re not trying to accomplish some external reward or win a certain game.

Listen if you’d like to learn more about

  • Product experience
  • Translating consumer insights into business innovation
  • Evolving your product

Links mentioned in this episode


The Product Experience is hosted by Lily Smith and Randy Silver.

Lily enjoys working as a consultant product manager with early-stage and growing startups and as a mentor to other product managers. Lily has spent 13 years in the tech industry working mainly with startups in the SaaS and mobile space. She has worked on a diverse range of products – leading the product teams through discovery, prototyping, testing and delivery. Lily also founded ProductTank in Bristol, the Product Managers’ meetup with regular events and talks on Product now with 800+ members and growing. Now the Product Director at Symec, Lily also runs ProductCamp in Bristol and Bath.

A recovering music journalist and editor, Randy has been working as an interactive producer and product manager across the US and UK for nearly 20 years. After launching Amazon’s music stores in the US and UK, Randy has worked with museums and arts groups, online education, media and entertainment, retail and financial services. He’s held Head of Product roles at HSBC and Sainsbury’s, where he also directed their 100+-person product community. Now a trainer, Discovery and Leadership consultant, he’s spoken at Mind the Product Engage (Hamburg and Manchester), the Business of Software, Turing Festival, a number of ProductTanks (London, Zurich, Manchester, Birmingham, Bristol, Oxford, and Brighton… so far!) and at conferences across the US and Europe.

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Our theme music is from Hamburg-based Pau, featuring ProductTank Hamburg’s own Arne Kittler on bass. Listen to more on their Facebook page

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