What tasks are they completing? To quote Maslow, “…it is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail” — so always carry a hammer, a screw driver, a pair of pliers and a hex wrench. Here are two of our favorite formats: Source: Product Thinking by Nikkel Blaase. Design philosophy #1: Make your design instinctive. To fill a real need, design must be rooted in reality. How to Write Philosophy. The most effective ones have 5 characteristics: As Simon Sinek put it so well in his TED Talk, “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” This goes for internal buy-in and external sales. As I fumbled through an answer I realized I didn’t really have an articulated design philosophy, or at least not one that easily came to mind. There is more than one way to skin a cat; there is also more than one way to write a philosophical work. I’d love to hear how you’d answer the question — What is your design philosophy? Talking directly with users helps uncover not only what they do, but also why they do it. However, when our team at Drawbackwards meets with a company that’s looking for help improving their product or service, they often want to begin brainstorming or designing solutions right away. That’s my first attempt at articulating a design philosophy. People’s expectations and desires evolve over time. Experience Design. Gather decision makers and key stakeholders in a room, and discuss the following questions. © 2003–2020 Drawbackwards. Brainstorm what they’re saying and doing. As the saying goes, “Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory.” A design philosophy isn’t the place to go into all the details about how your product will work, but in order for it to be useful and effective, it needs to allude to how you will achieve your vision. User research is invaluable for understanding current needs and workflows, but most users aren’t capable of communicating their unmet needs or articulating innovative ideas that would solve those challenges. This does not mean that design needs to be trendy, design can be timeless, but a great designer has a bent toward iteration and always has their ear to the ground. After all, seamless user experiences are born of connected interactions between a person and an object, a user and an interface. Without honing in on at least one key characteristic that is both unique from your competitors and relevant to your audience, you’re bound to end up as part of the noise instead of standing out from the crowd. Sometimes design evolves to meet these changes, sometimes design is the driver of the change. Home; Register; Sign In +91 11 4242 0837; search. PRS Sivakumar based on his 3 decades of work experience. There is a practiced art to creating great design, but the final output of the design process is not art. By drawing backwards and beginning your new endeavor with a design philosophy, you can look forward to: The greatest brands of our time have a visionary behind them who sets the design philosophy for their product or service, then validates it with users. How is your team supposed to hit the target if they don’t know where it is? A person should be able to easily determine how to use and interact with it. As I fumbled through an answer I realized I didn’t really have an articulated design philosophy, or at least not one that easily came to mind. What are they saying to the people around them? 6. Being able to quickly articulate these answers is essential for inspiring your team to build it and your customers to buy it. What they don’t realize is that when they see a beautiful product or seamless experience that works perfectly and changes their life, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Every problem presents its own unique set of characteristics, as such there is no one-size-fits-all process for coming to the best solution. How is a team supposed to make decisions that align with your plans if they don’t know about them or can’t easily find them? Creating Your Philosophy Discuss and align around the key components. Brainstorm the types of things a person within that customer segment is thinking and feeling on a daily basis. Form Follows Style. Once you’ve articulated your design philosophy, it’s time to validate it with users so you can feel confident in your approach and avoid wasting resources going in the wrong direction. When Peter Thiel and Elon Musk co-founded PayPal, did they jump into designing screens? The following are well known design philosophies. The leader needs to articulate their vision, strategy, and goals. Without a deep understanding of the end user and the reality in which a design will be used, any decision a designer makes is a shot in the dark. Art creates questions, design creates answers. What problem will it solve? When Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak joined forces to create the Apple I computer, do you think their first step was to start sketching what the product would look like? Amazon believes so strongly in design philosophies that they have developers write a hypothetical product press release and FAQ announcement before they write a single line of code. Oddly, it was the first time I’d ever been asked that question. Form Follows Function. Lackluster performance or even complete failure, Alignment within your team and across your organization, Successful, meaningful products and experiences. Regardless, a designer’s work is never done. Who else are they interacting with, and what do they see those people doing? Jassy explains that if the team can’t come up with a compelling press release, the product probably isn’t worth making. “Success” can be ambiguous, so getting clear on what that means is critical to keeping everyone aligned and achieving your goals. Having any design philosophy is a good start. Artists and designers often write statements that provide admirers of their work greater insight into the collection/portfolio, the design process of the artist, or what inspires the artist. However, moving too quickly can actually take more time overall and cause major problems. If you can’t interview actual users, talk to customer-facing teams like Sales and Support to hear the trends they’re seeing in real time and gather anecdotes that you can share with executives and stakeholders. However, this is one of the few scenarios where we recommend that the Product Owner or leader sets their vision first, then talks to users to confirm they’re solving the right problem. 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