When it comes to UX design, everyone approaches their work differently. We’re all interested in the ways that we can improve as designers, but countless tips simply suggest putting more time into your work or learning from others.
To become a better designer, you need better UX design advice, and that’s what we’re focusing on today. Let’s talk about 13 tips that will lead to you becoming a better designer. Not only will it show in the work, but our pride in what we create is just as important. Let’s explore ways our work and our mindset can improve within UX design.
1) Perfection Shouldn’t Be In Your Vocabulary
Is a project ever going to be perfect? Of course not. Nevertheless, designers stress endlessly over details that might bring them one step closer to perfection. Instead of thinking of something as perfect, think of the project on a spectrum of completion. In the middle of that spectrum, a project can simply be finished. Going above and beyond, however, means reaching a completion that pleases the client, the designer, and results in an effective end product.
2) Bring Great Ideas from Past Designs to New Projects
Is there anything quite like a project that launches successfully? When that happens, it’s easy to hop into the next endeavour ready to start fresh with new ideas, a new outlook, and new approach to design. Instead of starting from scratch, don’t be afraid to learn from past successes and bring those great ideas to new UX outlays. When it works, it works! Any digital strategy agency would tell us that good ideas go wasted when they don’t show up in more than one part of our work.
3) When You Have a Good Idea, Don’t Stop There
Especially in times of creative lulls, it can be tempting to land on a good idea and simply move on from the brainstorming process. When that occurs, don’t forget to return to the golden rules of UX design. When we’re struggling to come up with a fresh approach, remind yourself of the end goal and what we want users to experience in the end. Returning to these pillars can help turn one good idea into a handful of avenues to explore.
4) Invite Constructive Feedback from The Right People
If you’re not someone who enjoys constructive feedback, then it’s time to face that fear head-on. Don’t just wait for it either; make sure to invite feedback from peers and teammates during the design process.
5) Step Away When Needed
If a project is starting to lose momentum and you’re feeling pressure to keep pressing forward, give yourself a small break. Take a walk, throw on some headphones, and step away. You’re likely to return in a better mindset and ready to pick back up where you left off rather than dwell on the stoppage.
6) Collaborate More Often When Appropriate
You might not collaborate with a team on every UX design project, or any for that matter. That said, where there is room for you to collaborate with peers or teammates, take those opportunities to learn from what others in the field do to tackle new projects and challenges.
7) Learn to Set Better Goals
When it comes to goal setting, we can set better goals by doing two things. Firstly, prioritize your goals over the possibilities a project might offer. This helps you stay focused on what matters most. Secondly, set goals you have to reach for, not just ones that seem obtainable. Challenge is the ultimate catalyst for great design.
8) Don’t Just Listen, Actively Listen
What does active listening look like? The Center for Creative Leadership’s approach to active listening ensures the process isn’t static, but a steady flow of ideas, communication, and conversation to drive towards a better understanding of what a client wants and how you can achieve that goal.
9) Actively Seek Inspiration Everywhere
Don’t just use UX design projects as a way to find inspiration for new ideas or tactics. Take a look at your hobbies, your favourite shows, or just about anything to find inspiration in unassuming places.
10) Don’t Include Jargon in your Projects or In Conversations
Whether you’re talking with a client or writing copy for a UX design proposal, leave the design jargon out of it. People who don’t understand won’t get it and those who do will wonder why you’re relying on textbook phrases to express your ideas.
11) Practice Sketching
Before hitting the computer to design something, great UX experts usually sketch their ideas out first. Get in this habit for your design process.
12) Become an Expert Notetaker
While the pen is out for sketching, practice taking organized notes as well. Whether it’s to jot down client ideas or your own, we all work better with great notes at our side.
13) Be a Storyteller
At the end of the day, we’re storytellers. The user experience design process involves taking into consideration the technical elements as well as the journey users embark upon when engaging with your project. Tell a great story and they’ll always come back.