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New York,NY


Yazhen Liu, Samantha Tan

Aspire360 approached our team with the desire for a scalable solution to help their coaches simplify the day to day processes of their coaches

The Problem Space

Aspire360 is a high level CEO mentoring group for startup founders from seed to series B founded by three time CEO, Elenor Hagelund

Aspire360 groups founders into cohorts in order to connect them with their peers and prevent avoidable mistakes.

Mentors facilitate these groups to and provide micro-learnings through the Thrive platform. This platform does not have a component which can streamline and simplify the tasks associated with on boarding and cohort management.

How might we help Coaches simplify their processes to reduce frustration and increase time available to grow their cohort headcount?

The Process


Our team conducted seven interviews over zoom with CEO coaches at Aspire360 and other organizations. These interviews helped us truly understand the coaching experience. Each person had their own emotional experience and specific needs in performing mentor responsibilities.

We learned that coaches have to use a mix of tools and channels throughout the coaching process but there is no centralized system to organize the information.Additionally, coaches relied on many manual processes including note taking and use of whiteboards. We distilled these and other observations into Mark, the mentor who would serve as our persona and who we would be sure would have their needs met by our design.

Screen Shot 2021-07-22 at 4.25.29 PM.png

Understanding Marks needs goals and frustrations allowed us to fully empathize with him. We were then able to take user insights from our interviews and view them through Marks eyes to identify which features our Dashboard should have.


Mark likes to build rapport and get to know mentees on a personal level before admitting them into their cohort

Mark uses a variety of tools and channels to asses working style, commitment level, and goals, to tailor their approach to the mentorship

Mark wants to track student engagement in a streamlined way

Mark customizes his coaching to the mentees needs goals and timelines

Mark likes taking notes on coaching sessions and mentee progress

Mark is growth minded, and motivated by success


Tracker to organize and contact leads

Onboarding steps and status changes

Mentee tracking board and session attendance

Mentee profiles

Notepad access on Mentee profile and session pages

History of profits and milestones


To align on the initial design, our team participated in a collaborative design studio. After completing three rounds of hand sketching,critique,and iterations we aligned on our final design concept. This design incorporated the features identified from research in order to create the minimum viable product for the dashboard tool.


Next, we moved to Figma to create the mid fidelity prototype. Below are the wireframes of our initial design.

Task 1,2 Aspire360
Task 3 Aspire360
Task 4 Aspire360
User Testing - Mid Fidelity

User Testing (Mid Fidelity)


To understand how our design would be understood we conducted user testing. User testing allowed us to get feedback on the overall design and flow of the dashboard, and to validate whether users would find this tool useful.


Five users were selected with instructional or people management backgrounds to try to get as close to our target audience as possible.


The below recommendations were gleaned from these tests

  • Update the dashboard to have consistent messaging across the pages

  • Revise the placement hierarchy to have a better sequence and flow

  • Update visuals to provide a better user experience

The below design decisions for the Aspire360 Dashboard included

  • Curved Edges. This echoed the brands existing identity. Additionally, curved edges resonated a friendly and welcoming feeling to the dashboard

  • Drop Shadow. This provided a sense of dimension to the elements of the Dashboard tool. The drop shadow enhances tactile perception. This decision is also a nod to Marks proclivity toward pen and paper and white boarding.

  • 8pt grid system. This makes the design simpler to implement in CSS. Because this product will be coded and shipped shortly after design, we wanted to make things as easy as possible for the developers. The 8pt grid system also gives visual consistency and rhythm to the design as a whole.

Final Design (High Fidelity)

Once user testing was complete, our group finalized the design. We kept in mind everything learned about Mark from our research as well as the current Aspire360 brand guidelines.


Finally, we conducted another round of usability tests on the high fidelity prototype. Similar to the first round of testing, another five participants were recruited,however, this time we wanted to add in users that do not have instructional or people management background to ensure that the dashboard is intuitive for anyone to use. Once the testing was complete, a final iteration of the design was made with the following changes.

  • Revised the drag and drop feature

  • Added a shadow behind the header

  • Moved “see more” to the lower right hand corner of modules for consistency

  • Updated module sizing for consistency between pages

The prototype and all assets were delivered to Eleanor and the Developer team via Zeplin, Google Drive, and Figma. The additional feature of a Super Admin login was requested by the client following handoff. The Dashboard is currently being built to use in-house for Aspire360 coaches.

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