Speech at UX Poland conference

5 things you should always remember as a designer

UX Poland is one of the biggest conferences organised in this part of the world and it’s always a huge inspiration to be there & learn from others. Let me share with you some of my inspiration-boosting takeaways from UX Poland 2017: 5 ideas you should add to your designer’s must-remember list.

#1 How to brainstorm better?

Have you ever been struggling with a bossy, super shy or bored person during the brainstorming session? It's not enough to say that wrong attitude can kill all the creativity. So how to overcome it? With role-play, drawing or games! And no - it's not a joke! When you hit the wall, ask yourself weird questions like "what if all my users were time travelers from the past?", "what if all users of that bank were kids?" Try to draw or play through the solutions, pretend to be an ATM, a screen of your own app or busy and annoyed user. As silly as it may sound it brings results. BUT there is one more lesson to learn. Don't evaluate the idea right away. Between all bad solutions, you may find a real diamond. Don't swap it away in a rush. Take your time, wait a day or two to see it's value, because very often what's silly and worthless at first sight is a game-changing solution once you give it a chance.

#2 How to convince through storytelling?

So now you have your brilliant idea but it's so innovative that it may be really easily misunderstood. Now it's time for storytelling. After all, we're all just humans. So imagine you've invented Facebook and you have only a few seconds to catch investor's attention. So what would you say: "This is an online tool with a complex algorithm that allows the user to blah blah blah" or "imagine, you can easily get back in touch with this girl you felt for in 5th grade". The key is to recognize the real need behind the product and to present how you can meet your user's needs by using it. Think about it!

#3 How to be a good ancestor?

Have you ever been thinking about your impact on the world? Have you ever been wondering if the product you're working on will become a nuclear plant or a nuclear bomb? Social media is an amazing tool to share your memories, to stay in touch with your friends but also, unfortunately, a horrifying tool for anonymous bullies. While designing, we all should think about how to make the world a better place.

#4 How to be wiser?

Nowadays everything can be connected to the internet. A toothbrush could tell you how for long you need to be brushing your teeth, a salt dispenser could be used by shaking your iPhone, you could also buy a pair of pants using a special app and scanning your body but... do we really need it? Let's be wise and let's validate our ideas brutally. A good ancestor wouldn't leave useless garbage behind him.

#5 How to ensure design is smart?

Lots of products have a second life... or alternative life. Not every product is used as it was intended. Is it bad? Not necessarily. Imagine China full of customized scooters adjusted to be a food truck, mobile store or delivery truck etc. You could design a dedicated product for each of these groups, but you may also create one - a universal and an easily-customizable one, and win your customer's hearts!

I hope this brief list sparked a fire in you so now you can dig more and find the answers that make you as a designer a better expert and your product a better contribution to the world.

[Posts's pictures source -- UX Poland official Facebook page.]



Alicja Masiukiewicz

Senior UX and Graphic Designer

Graphic design is my lifetime love. Children illustration and printmaking are my passion, both are limitless when it comes to imagination.