With an increasing number of people pursuing a career in user experience, many designers today have non-traditional educational backgrounds. New designers frequently abstractly self-learn UX design by imitating UIs from Dribbble or Behance. They may notice improper practices that do not adhere to platform standards or expected behaviours if they do not master the fundamentals of UX or interface design. UX design career advice is not easy to come by but here in this article we shall breakdown everything based on experience and consultation
It’s critical to understand design fundamentals, especially when creating for specific platforms like i-Operating System or Android. When you are uncertain about interaction, it is vital to repeatedly look to some of the most popular design systems, such as Apple’s Human Interface Guidelines or Google’s Material Design. As you become more acquainted with design systems, you will begin to understand what makes sense and which components to include in your designs.
Consider the following critical pointers that are pretty much life-changing:
#1 Reach Out and Make Contact
You must plant seeds if you wish to grow a tree. Correspondingly, if you want to advance in your career, you need to plant seeds to magnify your network. Join and participate in events, conferences, hackathons, or workshops in your area by using sites like LinkedIn, Facebook Groups, or Meetup. You can often gain free admission by volunteering to assist run the event, even if it’s only setting up tables and chairs.
Your goal here is to introduce oneself to the design community and meet people in the field that have a lot to offer. Designers that go above and beyond to arrange an event typically have interesting stories and experiences to offer. You’ll meet folks who are insanely passionate about their work and have plenty of advice for aspiring designers like you.
The stipulation is that when meeting new individuals, you must also care and be highly enthusiastic. If you view networking as nothing more than a means of gaining an upper hand over others, this will not work for you. However, if you are sincere in developing relationships and demonstrate an eagerness to learn, networking can lead to important changes down the road. Please take UX design career advice very seriously, it is a murky industry.
#2 Seek Mentoring
Even though you are no longer in school, you should never stop studying. Because design is an ever-changing field, there is always something you can learn from someone else.Not every designer will be looking for someone to mentor. You will meet people who view design as a job and are unlikely to be interested in coaching. A good mentor is usually enthused about their career and can explain why they do things the way they do.
Investigate mentors in several fields of expertise to see which one stays. I’ve had a handful of my team leads serve as UX mentors, and I also seek leadership counsel from my design managers. Once you’ve found one or two designers to mentor you, don’t be hesitant to ask them questions on anything that piques your interest. They may notice your piqued interest and may ask you to assist them with a project if the occasion comes.
Working directly with professional designers has boosted my confidence in both technical and non-technical skills like communication, decision-making, and leadership. If you don’t have access to other designers where you work, use LinkedIn to connect with people you like or who are in positions you aspire to be in someday. Just as the great Phil Gilbert once said, “Every day is a prototype.” Keep trying new things, learn from them and iterate on yourself every day.
#3 Make a lot of Inquiries
Similarly, asking a lot of questions will help you fit into your role. I’ve had impostor syndrome as a rookie designer, especially when joining a new team of seasoned designers. With so many unknowns, it is easy to develop anxiety or even dread of failure.
As cliché as it may sound, I’ve discovered that there is no such thing as a stupid question. Asking questions demonstrates that you are aware of what you don’t know and are eager to learn. Because you are new to the team and maybe the industry, your teammates will most likely be helpful and assist you in getting back on track. As I previously stated, having a mentor may be beneficial in terms of answering your questions or properly pointing you.
#4 Continue to be Inspired
When working in the creative profession, it’s important to keep inspired by looking at the work of other designers. I’ve approached this by seeking apps that I believe are well-designed. Mobbin and Product Hunt are two websites I utilize for app inspiration.
Once I’ve decided on an app, I try to discover the app’s designer online and see whether they discuss their design process. It can be beneficial to learn how they made their design decisions, whether through their portfolio or a blog post. Understanding their thought process can help you think about how you might approach fixing your design difficulties. When I’m feeling uninspired or creatively stalled, this allows me to step back from my work and explore the limitless possibilities of what design can accomplish.
#5 Maintain an Open Mind.
Successful design necessitates collaboration. It is your responsibility as a designer to understand that good design may be improved by allowing others to contribute their ideas and opinions. Feedback should not be interpreted as a personal attack on your abilities.
Even if you disagree with every assessment, you should appreciate constructive feedback when having your work assessed. Most of the time, when a user or stakeholder provides feedback, even if the proposed solution isn’t perfect, they are bringing up a problem that, in most circumstances, has to be addressed. However, if you disagree with someone’s assessment, don’t be scared to confront it. Gather and assess each piece of feedback. Then you can consider how to solve the problem.
There is not always a correct or incorrect method to approach a design. Designers have unique approaches to problem-solving. Each solution may have advantages and disadvantages. Ideally, your design should strike a balance between the company’s product goals and user experience. You may have to compromise at times to fully satisfy both. Just keep an open mind and don’t become too connected to your job because, in the end, your team is still looking out for the best interests of the users.
In conclusion, all the above steps are meant to serve as a guiding light and help motivate you even in very difficult and overwhelming moments. UX design career advice does not come easy and it takes a tremendous amount of effort and focus.