UI/UX Articles and Interesting Tidbits of the Week

March//11//2022

Here are some interesting finds on UI/UX of the week!

1.

Lessons from a Failed Startup. Hailing from Inc. magazine, this article from author Darpan Munjal is a testament to the lessons he learnt from the startup he commenced, focused on fashion for the Indian Market. It’s also a solid reflection on what to do, when going through a process of pushing through an initiative that is in gestation mode. The author refers relevant considerations such as Marketing not being a substitute for Value Creation, Being nimble and able to Pivot when needed (taking cues from what testing and users are saying) and also, not optimizing for profitability too soon (being lean is paramount, as is being able to re-direct the profits into the business itself, and allow for it to flourish). These are lessons worth considering, even in contexts of innovation and lean practices. Well worth reading through. Highlight of the article includes:

“It is important to stay true to your instincts but do not lose sight of real data. If the data shows clear warning signs regarding the viability of your business model, don’t wait too long to pivot. There are many stories of iconic companies that became widely successful after pivoting from their original business model. For example, Instagram started out as a Foursquare-like app before pivoting to their current business model; Twitter started out as podcasting company. Pivoting is a humbling process. While some entrepreneurs may consider pivoting as a sign of accepting failure, it actually demonstrates courage and foresight in steering your business towards success.”

2.

Interview with Gail Anderson. Another tome in the series of interviews Shaping Design is conducting, typically focused on the topic of collaboration, this time around the conversation is established with Art Director, Educator and Designer Ms. Gail Anderson. Highlight of the article includes:

“What is your advice for leading a design team? Empower and then trust people to make decisions so the sun doesn’t rise and set on you. Encourage experimentation without repercussions.
What’s the best advice you’ve received? (And from whom?) “The real issue is not talent as an independent element, but talent in relation to will, desire, and persistence. Talent without these things vanishes and even modest talent with those characteristics grows.” — Milton Glaser.”

3.

Collaborative Design. Interesting article from The Fast Company, which is actually an excerpt from author Kevin G. Bethune’s book, “Reimagining Design”. While this episode is very specific to a particular industry and to a specific model of collaboration, it’s nonetheless a testament to the value of collaboration between diverse team members, and how that process alone enriches the final output. It’s still very much representative of the Design agency type of engagement, with the ever present Brief, which at times can be more of a dictatorial element, more so than a starting point for a journey. However, it’s worth reading through, and understand where Design Thinking, Requirements Documentation, and the Discoverability processes in Software Design, have in many ways shifted these paradigms, while incorporating the learnings of the importance of Collaboration. Worth a read. Highlight of the article includes:

“What I really grew to appreciate was Nike’s investment in their product triad model: a product line manager (i.e., product marketer or product manager), a development engineer (who engages with factory partners with an eye toward downstream manufacturing challenges), and a footwear designer had equal standing in their collaboration as a triad unit. No footwear design moves forward without the intimate involvement of these multidisciplinary triads or pods.”

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