You are not a UX Designer

Hey designer person. I’m talking to you here. Wake up! Can’t see the trees because of that giant forest? Totally understandable. You’re probably overwhelmed at work now, doing things you actually don’t want to do.

Like setting up workshops with people that don’t want to be in workshops.

Conducting user tests just because everyone out there says ”You need to test this OMG didn’t you teeeest this before launching WTF!!! ”…

Sure tests are great. Let test people do those. They love sitting in Excel doing charts. You hate that. You are a builder, a designer. Not only that, but you are like me.

I’m seeing a thing I really don’t like. Designers forced to do tasks that only sets them back. Take a word of advice. Scrap the titel ”UX Designer” immediately from your CV and change it to ”Visual Designer” instead. That way, you will get tasks that actually are what you love doing most. Most bigger companies have dedicated visual designers and dedicated UX designers. The latter do all that boring crap you hate. Let them do that. They actually love it. Good for them.

Smaller companies don’t have that luxury, and you are forced to wear many hats. You know what, you can wear all of those hats, just make sure you wear your favorite ones more often. User testing can be outsourced, and it’s not expensive. Not compared to all the hours of suffering you will be putting in.

If I have learned something useful in my now almost 30 years working as a designer, it’s that you get what you ask for. That if you don’t ask or do, you will never ever do the things you feel most passionated about.

I truly understand that it’s extremely hard to say things like:

”Yeah, you know what, that is actually a great idea (probably not), but let’s do that later (never or at least not by you). Currently, I’m busy doing magical things, like converting your interesting (stupid) ideas into something that actually will work”…

But see, you don’t need to say these things. Just act. Fill your days with all the things you love. Passionate about motion design? Just start adding small, simple animations into your designs. No one will complain, on the contrary. Well, okey, not entirely true. There will be people complaining now and then. Like the ones that care about accessibility and people with ADHD. You know what, I most probably have a couple of those letters and animations don’t bother me. Just do them subtle. Be smart. 🤌

Listen to the feedback. Then think ”how can I outsmart these people telling me things that actually are great, from one perspective, but will most definitely kill all the joy these small nuggets of motion are adding?”…

Use technology to your advantage. Why not build in a motion pause function? Or a setting very much like the one in iOS that reduces or stops animations completely?

UX is sucking all the joy out of design

Another troubling trend is that you have armies of ”designers” that care more about adding buzzwords like ”service designer” or help me GOD ”I’m a Xperience Deeeeeesigner”(No you are not!) to their CV’s then actually crafting great products or services. What happened? When did academia kill the craft of design?

I’m done calling myself a UX designer.

Juan, over and out. ✌️🎤

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