First thing I did to think about 2018, is to review the goals I set for myself in 2017. Man, I did knock a few of those off of the list, but I was not nearly as successful as I should have been.
Here are my lame excuses for not accomplishing last year’s goals:
I changed jobs 3 times in one year. I had a huge learning curve to every new job, and I am still trying to understand the new industries I was working in.
I was a bit stressed having landed in positions that were empty promises and not career-growth opportunities. Thus, the change in positions so many times.
With all of the new jobs, I was devoting any extra free time I had to getting up to speed, and not focusing on networking or getting involved in the local UX community.
OK, OK enough with the pity party. Now let’s focus on what I really want to accomplish in 2018.
“Design of Everyday Things” (started in 2017, need to finish)
“Checklist Manifesto” (charted for 2017, pushing to this year)
Write blog posts
In 2017, I was shooting to post 25 original blog posts.
I want to shoot for 12, long-format blog posts with valuable content.
Plus I would like to continue my series of “UX Tidbits” and “UX Quotes” sprinkled throughout he year. I enjoy researching, gathering and creating these fun short snippets of info. I will shoot for 18 “UX Tidbits in 2018
I have felt so lucky to have the followers on twitter that I have accumulated this far. I would like to continue to grow my Twitter following.
On jnblatz on Twitter, my goal is to tweet enough interesting content to gain 1,200 followers. Ambitious goal I know!
Continue to participate in local Meetups to expand my network and to get to know others in the UX community and other related fields.
Have the opportunity to participate in one panel at a Meetup, meeting or class as a person who has some sort of UX knowledge to bring to the table.
Give a presentation to one Meetup group. Group and topic to be determined.
Attend Creative Mornings events to meet more designers and artists in the local community.
Continue to learn Sketch well enough to mock up several designs to expand portfolio and skill set.
Understand the industry I work for, cloud computing, better.
Learn about managing teams. It might be something I am interested in, so I would like to learn more.
Create UX assets and deliverables to sharpen my skills and enhance my portfolio.
Wrap up the “UX Process” project I have been working on at work and develop a strong case study on the process of creating it. Continue to visit the project through the year to see how it is going and iterate as needed.
Determine what topic I need to know more about when it comes to UX. Perhaps Customer Experience or Service Design? See how these tracks can be explored further in my current work space.
Revisit these goals in the mid year to not only track my progress, but to add to it. I feel like I need more concrete goals than just listed here. Stronger possibilities tbd.
Have better work/life balance. Right now I am spending any extra time I have in the evenings working on “Cloud Computing” or “Leading the UX Team” related tasks and not having any rest or personal development time.
2017 was not a great year for travel for me. This is especially true for international travel. I would like to explore the world a bit more, even if it is in my home state.
Read more outside of UX. I would like to learn more about another discipline. Be that fine art, history or social sciences. I would like to increase my knowledge about a field that could be complementary to UX, but is not strictly UX.
Seems like everyone has a “Year in Review,” or “2017 Wrap Up.” I am going to join the cliché train and talk about my trials and tribulations in 2017.
I still have my health. ha ha. Actually things were not that bad.
I have made several new friends in the new career paths and journeys I have joined.
I actually accomplished some of my 2017 Goals this year. Maybe not everything, but it’s a start.
I learned Sketch and feel pretty confident with it. But I want to practice it more and get stronger at using the program.
Continue to grow online presence in Twitter. Do you want to follow me too? I would be honored.
I did grow my UX network in Dallas. I’ve done a pretty good job, but I want to be more embedded in the UX community here.
Imposter syndrome will never leave me. No matter where I work, how much I learn, how successful or accomplished I might seem to be. I always feel like I am looking over my shoulder trying to fake everyone out.
This could be good, but this is also bad. I started, but did not finish, “Design of Everyday Things.” So that has to be bumped to the 2018 to-do list.
My new job has taken up a lot of my personal time where I should be devoting that time to advancing my career and learning more about UX, Service Design and Customer Experience.
Working for a company who did not understand UX
Having a narcissistic boss who thought it was appropriate to try to sabotage your career rather than helping me succeed.
Changing 3 jobs in a year. Ouch! That can look really bad professionally, and I am stung by that potential perception. But the job changes were all for very good reasons, and I hope that things will settle down in 2018.
OK I know it’s pretty far in to the new year. And in keeping my vow to regularly have blog posts I have been cheating a bit by basically re-posting content. So I am going to reflect on my 2016 goals and see what I can build upon and start anew.
First, let’s look at 2016 goals at the beginning of the year. I think that there are a few of theses I can revisit and try to accomplish in 2017.
“Design of Everyday Things”
“How to Get People to do Stuff”
Write blog posts
I am shooting to post 25 original blog posts in 2017
Ok so that’s a good reasonable start. I want to add a few more in 2017.
Become and “expert” in some discipline concerning UX. (Even if I am the only one who thinks I am an expert. ha!)
Mock up pages in Sketch to enhance portfolio
Continue to grow online presence in Twitter
Learn Sketch well enough to mock up several interfaces to expand portfolio and skill set (yep, I wrote that twice)
Seems like everyone has a year in review. What celebrities died this year? What were the biggest news stories? What can we expect in 2017? Well I am not going to recap all the biggest news for 2016. Instead, I would like to reflect on the crazy year it has been for me and to see if I actually accomplished ANY of my goals. ha ha.
To start with, I took a look at my mid year post “Mid Year: Revisiting My Personal Goals” to see how my goal accomplishment were stacking up there. Well, as you can see from the article, I missed few and hit a few. That’s ok, because my career to a huge shift in the middle of the year that caused me to quickly start a new job and move across the country.
Re-learned Axure. I did, but I have not practiced it as much as I should have so I probably forgot a lot of the actions.
Continue writing blog posts. I wanted to hit 30 blog posts this year. I am pretty sure I did that. I want to continue this practice in the new year.
Join a side project. I helped out with Wingspanarts. As of today, the site has not launched their redesign. But I hope they will find a great developer and do so early in the new year.
So those were my major accomplishments. My list was much shorter than I hoped. But I am OK with that. Like I said, I had some major career shifts this year and I needed to focus on sharpening new skills needed for the job. My plan is to think about my new goals for the new year and write a post soon.
Until then, I hope you had a wonderful year. I hope you accomplished some goals, and don’t beat yourself up about the ones you did not knock off your list. There’s always next year to revisit those goals and to make new ones.
Like we all know in UX, it is ok to learn from your failings. Also, it’s ok to pivot in your goals when life hands you changes. Just go with the flow…in 2017.
I am revisiting the goals I set for myself in early 2016. I need to see if I have accomplish any or many of what I set out to do and if I need to reassess my goals based on my new career path. My notes are included in purple after the original list item.
Axure Re-learned in Spring but need to practice skills to keep them fresh
Sketch No I have not learned this other than watching online tutorials. Not pertinent to my current job, but still would be good to learn.
Improve coding skills
Refresh my knowledge about CSS and HTML No I have not refreshed my knowledge on this. Not pertinent to my current job, but still would be good to learn.
“Information Architecture” aka the Polar Bear book Yes! Accomplished
“Design of Everyday Things” No, still want to.
“Checklist Manifesto” No, still want to.
“How to Get People to do Stuff” In the process of reading
I am adding these two books to my list, which I am in the process of reading and are more related to my new job: “Observing the User Experience” and “Research Methods.”
Also adding “UX Strategy” since I got it as a going-away gift. Thank you Kristin Kazamaki for the very thoughtful gift.
Start another “100 Days of Learning” journal, but expand it for the entire year. I have partially done one. It’s not as developed as last year. I would prefer to review last years, and this year’s and focus on writing notes as I see some important content.
Review the “Learning Stuff” journal from last year I still need to do this.
Write blog posts
I am shooting to post 30 blog posts in 2016 Well I have 23 right now so I am in a good place to meet that goal.
Join a side project
I would love to join another project. If you know of any short term projects that need a UX designer, please let me know. I am success at this as I was a UX consultant for Wingspan Arts in NYC. It still needs to go through the redesign, but I helped them organize content and surveyed users and stakeholders to build a better redesign plan.
Build out portfolio
Improve the content of my portfolio by introducing new clips Did this and also acquired a Dribble account to also showcase my designs.
Present my acquired knowledge illustrating my software proficiency I have an opportunity to teach an online course in the pipeline, and if it works out, this would help me to meet this goal. Fingers crossed!
As you know from my previous post, “100 Days of Learning Stuff,” I set up a challenge for myself to learn something new every day for 100 consistent days. My goal was a success, and I continued the learning experience through the rest of the year.
Looking back at my book today, I am pleased with myself for taking a bit of time to take note and learn a few things along this year’s journey. Some of the topics included in my UX journal include:
Several “Golden Rules” lists for UX
Numerous definitions of key terms and concepts
Great UX quotes
Laws like Hick’s Law and Fitt’s Law
Principles and steps
Abbreviations and methods
And a lot more. I am going to set a goal to create a new UX notebook for 2016. I encourage you to develop a journaling method for yourself and keep on learning in the New Year.
I hope 2015 was great for you. And best of luck in 2016.
This is a portion of my first assignment for the Cal State Fullerton User-Centered Design for Web and Mobile Interfaces class. The charts here correspond to my chosen class project: A Hollywood Walking Tour App. I can’t seem to find a good and FREE walking tour app. So I thought about creating one myself.
The charts here discuss what the goals of the business are and what the customer goals would be. Though these charts are not perfect, their are a good first draft for the project.
Jennifer Blatz explores the world of UX through words and imagery