Not all companies are created equal. Neither is their UX maturity. Some companies really appreciate the value of User Experience Research and Design. Other companies hear the term “UX” hear that everybody is getting it. So they feel like they need it too. It’s the later companies that have the low UX maturity.
I, unfortunately, was recently working with a company with low UX maturity. I had supervisors who were looking at me saying,
- “What do you do again? Why are you here?”
- “I don’t really understand what UX is.”
- “What does UX stand for? Oh User Experience….So what does that mean?”
- “So you are a Front-End Developer?”
- “I think the most important deliverable you can provide is working code.”
Ahhhh, you can imagine how these questions and comments really hit me hard. Granted, I am in a business where I am surrounded by engineers. So I expect some of this mindset. But I don’t expect this sort of mindset from my superiors. Even the one who said, “Oh yeah, I have ‘Done UX’ in the past. Hmmmmmm.
In these scenarios, it is our responsibility as UX professionals to educate out supervisors and peers about what UX is, how is is so valuable for business, but most importantly, how UX folks can save time and money for developers.
Leah Buley wrote a fantastic book called “The UX Team of One.” I have used her book as my bible, trying to introduce the value of User Experience Design and research in to my organization. One way I did this, was jumpstart their education with a presentation. I gathers some of my key stakeholders and supervisors in a room, and gave them a quick and brief overview of What is UX? in a presentation.
Some of the high-level points of my “What is UX?” presentation include:
- What UX research provides
- The definition of UX
- That UX is not just resigning things or making it pretty
- The “Double Diamond” and how that process feeds developer’s process
- How UX research can reduce developer’s rework time
- The financial value of UX research and design
- Illustration the UX process, and the steps involved
- Emphasizing that we are not the user, and we need a user advocate amongst the group of engineers
Finally, I wrapped up my presentation with that famous Steve Job’s quote:
Design is not just what it looks like and feels like.
Design is how it works.
I would love it you would look at my entire What is UX? presentation and provide your feedback. Did I leave anything out? Did I focus too much on one aspect? Please share your thoughts so that I can make it better. I never know if I will have to give a presentation like this the next time.