HomeBig bioFeatured work:  Thrivent  |  Kalderos

What was my role & what were the decision-making drivers?


We’ve got a team to build!

Jump into a project, get it going, and then make sure the next group of people are set up for success.

When I first started at the end of 2020, Thrivent relied on consultancies to deliver work. I played a pivotal role in rapid design practice growth at Thrivent Digital by transitioning consultants out, continuing old projects, initiating new projects, expanding our designer roster, and guiding new team members to take charge of these projects. 

We even went a full 9 months without a product design director; design leads were left to hold the fort down.

2020: 15 team members, 2 designers, barely any engineers
2023:  150+ team members, 30 designers, and a full engineering practice.

Lots of re-orgs in between. In that time, I went from a Product Designer, to Senior, to Lead.


Going from 0 to 1: let’s build out our basic capabilities and get out of the 2000s first.

The current client experience is scattered due to the mix of third-party tools, old legacy technology and development pipelines, and the lack of a dedicated digital product practice. 

Many of the product requirements centered around phasing out outdated technologies and transitioning to in-house solutions, with a lesser emphasis on exploratory and discovery-driven tasks around actual people. It is what it is.


The product operating model is early in its maturity.

Re-orgs on re-orgs

We don’t even have our analytics capabilities, nor do we even have experiences to measure with metrics.
Our way of working on products, design, and engineering is still maturing. While many of us value putting people at the center, we're in the process of moving from designs based mainly on what stakeholders want to ones that are inspired by what users need.

Read Act I: Consultants and Thrivent’s first mobile app