Making Open Work
May 8–9, 2017: Training & Tutorials
May 10–11, 2017: Conference
Austin, TX

What’s your skateboard?

Emily Stamey (InQuest)
11:50am12:30pm Wednesday, May 10, 2017
Level: Non-technical
Average rating: *****
(5.00, 1 rating)

Who is this presentation for?

  • Project managers, developers, and anyone who wants to build an application

What you'll learn

  • Learn how to build a story map and use it to find out more about your project, group the stories based on objectives and problems solved, prioritize features that deliver the most value to your customers, and identify and mitigate risk in the story map


User story mapping is a strategy in which you form a team of customers, developers, and users around your project to discover the full details of your project. Your team diagrams the story of the business process and all of the events happening around it. Once you have completed discovery of these stories, your team uses strategies to view features alongside the problems they solve, allowing you to prioritize features regardless of your technical expertise. Emily Stamey walks you through user story mapping, teaching you how to plan your project as if it were a vehicle and deliver the most valuable features to the customer by answering the question, “What’s your skateboard?”

Emily draws on simple examples to explain how to diagram the process, discover the details of the project, and identify the main objectives of the project. Along the way, Emily discusses strategies for prioritizing features and how to handle areas of risk in the story.

You’ll learn how this strategy helps you to communicate more clearly with your customers and how it can help you all evaluate priorities based on everyone’s needs. Opening communication with your customer in this way helps to reduce frustration with unmet expectations and confusion about project deliverables and improve estimation.

Photo of Emily Stamey

Emily Stamey


Emily Stamey works at InQuest, a network security company based in Washington, DC. Emily learned PHP in 1999 and loved it, igniting her passion for open source. She is an active volunteer in the community, serving as director of Women Who Code Raleigh/Durham, organizer of TrianglePHP, and a volunteer for Girl Develop It, and enjoys helping people share ideas and learn together, especially at conferences. In her free time, Emily enjoys music, Legos, making things, playing games, and socializing.