Welcome to John Gakau’s portfolio website.

Using proven UX and product leadership to deliver better performance and results.

Learn how he works with teams to make better things for people, so that people can do things better.

Success Stories.

Different isn’t always better, but better is always different.

John has helped clients across a range of industries improve experiences and organizational performance for nearly two decades.

He has worked with companies backed by venture capital and private equity; mature and established product and services businesses; associations, nonprofits, and public sector organizations.

Regardless of size or project stage, John has helped clients successfully work through change and digital transformations using collaborative, user-centered processes and tools to plan, design, and deliver better products and service experiences internally and to market.

Contact John to access the client success stories featured below.


Knowledgeable, experienced, grounded, collaborative, and fun.

An information architect and experience strategy leader with an unrelenting commitment to helping teams create things that make things better for people.

Using proven user experience (UX) strategy and collaborative design tools and techniques, John works with organizations of all sizes to:

  • Foster and promote a people-first, user-centered vision, approach, and processes.

  • Better understand target audiences’ needs, goals, and behavior to help deliver better products and services within the enterprise and to market.

  • Rethink processes and workflows to minimize friction, empower team members, encourage innovation, and deliver better performance and results.

  • Create people-centered products and services that are engaging, delightful, and maintain coherence and conceptual unity across all channels and touchpoints.

  • Develop, grow, and sustain a collaborative listening and learning culture to monitor, measure, and improve experiences and outcomes.

See John’s client success stories to learn how he’s helped clients like you.

Contact John to talk about how you can work together to improve experiences and results for your business.


Holistic, collaborative, multidisciplinary, and rigorous.

Seasoned UX leader and inclusive practitioner with deep grounding in UX, product strategy, and service design for the creation of effective and engaging experiences for people across all touchpoints and stages of the relationship lifecycle.
UX Leadership + Mentoring (20 years)
UX Strategy + Design Management (20 years)
Client + Stakeholder Management (25 years)
Participatory Design (20 years)
Stakeholder + Project Team Alignment (20 years)
Lean UX + Agile (15 years)
UX Research + User-Centered Design (20 years)
Process + User Flow Modeling (25 years)
Collaborative Design Work Sessions + Workshops (20 years)
Information Architecture (25 years)
Controlled Vocabulary, Taxonomy, Ontology + Content Strategy (25 years)
Interaction Design (25 years)
UI Design/Wireframing (25 years)
Expert Review + Usability Testing (25 years)
Product + Service Design (15 years)
508/ARIA (9 years)
Prototyping (7 years)

Experience, Education + Training

“If we want users to like our products and services, we should design them to behave like likeable people.”

– Alan Cooper