Earlier in the year I had the good fortune of presenting to a class from the University of Technology, Sydney’s Interaction Design course. As someone who occasionally hires designers, experience in user testing and a sincere integration of users in the design process is what makes candidates stand out. Why? Because this is what reduces errors, minimizes IT and build change requests and helps ensure users can understand and use our products. It’s a mistake to think something has to be detailed and almost production ready to be tested. Test ideas, test sketches, test digital, test services. Test early, iteratively and often.
“UX proponents tell tall tales about how good design really takes place. Bottom-up, evidentiary design implies that the designer is ultimately unnecessary, a mere facilitator who draws out a solution from the collective… And top-down, genius design becomes indistinguishable from salesmanship. As a result, design dissolves into other, more established disciplines like business intelligence, product marketing, and corporate evangelism. It’s an error that makes good design look far easier and more replicable than it really is. And worse, it allows people to conclude that their own expertise from data analytics to advertising to illustration is a sufficient stand-in for design.”
“The faster a business grows the faster it dies also … We decided to put ourselves on a growth program … so all decisions from then on were made as if we were going to be here a hundred years from now. Slowing down the growth, saying no to a lot of opportunities and just being more responsible.” — How I Built This – Patagonia: Yvon Chouinard
I did some volunteering here and there for one of my favourite organisations Open Australia. This included occasionally managing the twitter handle for their project “Election Leaflets“. My job was to tweet and answer questions. I began noticing some patterns and then dug a little deeper to see what it all meant. I wrote up my research in an article: Scrutinising the Audience Experience of Election Leaflets.
Ralph Affleck is king of the maker’s movement. Watch him in action for a beautiful dose of inspiration.
I’ve not yet been responsible for a roadmap but I have certainly fed information into them, so I was very keen to check out yesterday’s meetup and hear from a panel who disagreed and agreed on the merit and use or uselessness of product roadmaps. The panellists were
— David J Bland (@davidjbland) April 9, 2015
This week a colleague rushed up asking how long it would take to produce a journey map and the answer was … it depends.
Monday 23rd March was the fourth installment of the Sydney chapter of the Jobs to be Done meetup, and the first co-organised by me. That’s right, after so many years of attending meetups I’ve finally stepped up to help Christian keep the ball rolling. As always we were wonderfully and generously hosted by Brainmates who also host and sponsor Product Mavens and Product Talks Sydney. I’ll be getting along to one of those very soon.