Why we need design systems

Why we need design systems

And why need to go back to why we have design systems in the first place.
It’s as much about alignment and agreement on direction of a site in a brand’s context as the design and technical aspects of the delivery of the interface.

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Learning a design mindset

Learning a design mindset

Designers are a rare breed. We think in non-linear ways. We do not plan as much as get started with something. We create and change as we go. This is actually completely different to a plan and execute strategy.

Planning up front is meaningless when the variables of a successful solution change as you get started. Fixed specifications only serve a historical perspective as time will change the delivery.

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Throwing it over the wall

Throwing it over the wall

Very often it is unclear to a product team who is really in charge of budgets, how the fiscal planning will effect the project and if a change in strategic priorities may derail the product development. Add external vendors as team members, and you have all the ingredients for a stalled development process, or one that is really two different processes that may not even co-exist in the same time frame.

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Tales from SXSW and how design must be a force for positive change

Tales from SXSW and how design must be a force for positive change

Innovation requires change. Technological advances are pushing companies to move faster and create new ideas, products, and services that in the industrial age took decades to develop. With change now occurring exponentially instead of incrementally, design is no longer a link in the innovation chain, but the hub of the wheel.

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The 8 traits in a great design team player

The 8 traits in a great design team player

This post was written in 2011 and I have changed some wording particularly around UX to be more encompassing to any designer who works in a user-centred function. There have been a slew of articles around this subject but the focus here is on the character traits that enable personal growth and allow great team dynamics to exist.

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Being Priceless

Being Priceless

What is the difference between a good and a great designer? Why do some get better and some stagnate? Is your individual design practice enough to elevate you beyond the competent majority?

Here are a few thoughts around how design work develops from craft, to process to consultation and how your client will always need nurturing.

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Design practice makes perfect

Design practice makes perfect

Evidence gained from research is powerful. It can persuade the most stubborn board members if presented in a way where decisions can be made based on facts. Data is also very easy to understand from different perspectives, it is the tangible, cold hard numbers that make it easy for decision makers to trust and react upon.

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Prospecting in the 21st Century

Prospecting in the 21st Century

In the company I work at, we are growing our UX offering around a product and it is a slow but sure process of convincing people that this approach (with the right designers) can really work for their business. However, we must also embark on communication and design work as our market is not as big or as mature as the US or UK. These are driven by the need for business survival but it also ensures we have diverse viewpoints on our projects. Different perspectives provide value.

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