Episode 34: Yasmine Khan

Every human has an innate desire to fit in…you need your tribe for survival. For the times in my life when I tried to force myself to fit in, I really failed myself. And I really hurt myself.

"Success is helping people trust themselves and trust each other."

Yasmine Khan, Design Research Manager, on connecting data to human stories

Yasmine Khan is a Design Research Manager at a leading personal finance company in San Francisco. Yasmine has made it her life’s purpose to connect human faces and human stories to data so that when individuals make decisions on large data sets, they are able to see beyond the numbers to make thoughtful recommendations and choices.

A personal tragedy brought urgency to Yasmine’s drive to work with institutions to elevate the importance of making personal connections with the “people behind the numbers”. In 2014, Yasmine lost her younger brother, Adam, to a heroin overdose. 

Podcast Details

Find out from the podcast how Yasmine:

  • Connects art, museums and design to her career today
  • Uses her Mexican/Pakistani identity to tell stories and why she calls herself “weird”  
  • Became a people “nerd”, the special view that she holds of the world and how she brings that to others
  • Learned to accept and embrace her body
  • Relates her first museum trip to a spiritual experience and how that shaped her future
  • Reveals the taboos of immigrant culture from domestic violence, addiction and disconnection
  • Took the tragedy of losing her brother to a heroin addiction and how that led her to her life’s work to connect human faces and stories to data
  • Defines success as helping people trust themselves and trust each other

“I feel a responsibility to Adam that if I can see the patterns and match the patterns to what led to how we lost him, I feel this responsibility to help honor that and to help solve that for the next Adam." -Yasmine Khan

About Yasmine

Yasmine and her four siblings are the children of immigrants from Pakistan and Mexico. Her exposure to diversity at a young age made her an acute observer of people. Today, Yasmine leads Design Research at Credit Karma in San Francisco where she brings the financial journeys of real people from diverse backgrounds into the workplace. She uses these stories and insights alongside big data to inform product design strategy. 

Her practice as a Design Researcher has been profiled by People Nerds. 

Yasmine's Design Research Articles on Medium
Yasmine's article on being raised Muslim