All my life I’ve been fascinated by the human mind. I read every book written by Freud & Co and was determined to become a world-changing psychoanalyst. When I started to study psychology, I quickly realized that I entered a world of experimental design, discrete mathematics and statistics rather than a world of sub-consciousness & self-actualization and that my new world revolved much more around Tversky & Kahneman and Kolmogorow & Smirnow than around Freud & Jung.
Since I didn’t intentionally plan to enter the field of statistics, I had to do some serious self-reflection myself. Eventually, I “suffered” some kind of “professional Stockholm syndrome”, ending with me falling in love with statistics and everything related to data science and big data. Being pushed into cold “numeric water” might have been the biggest “blessing in disguise” in my life.
I surpassed myself and I became very good in a field that I dreaded. I therefore want to encourage young people to surpass themselves because it’s among the best feelings I’ve ever had. By avoiding big challenges, you might steal yourself from amazing chances and experiences. Over the years I became an expert on data science and analytics and I haven’t regretted going that way for one second. While my fascination with data has grown over the years, my passion for psychology has remained the same. Today I have the privilege to combine both of my biggest interests: data science and psychology.
I love deriving valuable insights from data and since most of the time data is produced directly or indirectly by humans or reflects human behaviors, I greatly love bridging the gap between data science and psychology, two omnipresent topics in business. Currently I work as a user researcher at TestingTime, a Swiss startup which recruits test users for the UX research in companies. At TestingTime, I build algorithms to ensure a good fit between “test user” and “user test”. We use sophisticated machine learning techniques and combine them with classical empirical research. Working in this great startup has been one of the best professional decisions I’ve ever made and I’m glad to have never let fear stand in the way to my dreams.
I encourage young people, especially young women, to make conscious decisions (rather than just letting life happen), both professionally and privately, and to believe in themselves. It’s important to be a kind and forgiving person and a good friend in life, to other people and most importantly to yourself.
Meet Lisa Winter: Psychologist, Co-founder Hakuna MaData, Data Science Lover.