How Liferay Analytics Cloud designers prepared for a second year design leap

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Photo by Alena Vavrdova on Unsplash

User: Click, click *long pause* click? click?

Me: Anxiety level = Maximum

I wish I had more time to finish this feature.

Ugh the requirements weren’t comprehensive enough.

I thought QA, ran through it with no issues…

We didn’t test this?!

Product teams are almost always constrained by tight timelines and ambiguous requirements. It’s a balancing act that often results in suboptimal delivery with mounds of design debt.

In our case, the segment criteria builder feature in Liferay Analytics Cloud’s MVP release stood out above the rest. This was the result of lofty release ambitions meets back-against-the-wall scope cuts. …

During my first year at Liferay, I had the pleasure of contributing to taking Analytics Cloud from an idea to reality.

During this period, we’ve had anywhere between 3 to 8 designers at various design stages attending brainstorming sessions, providing countless comments over Invision and Figma, and at times flying thousands of miles just to be in the same room together. We did all of this in the name of taking an abstract idea to a concrete product.

But as our design team starts to scale in size and across borders, I find asking myself, how can we be more effective and impactful? …

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How often as designers do we feel under appreciated for our blood, sweat and tears poured in to a design? If your professional experience has been anything like mine, it’s all the damn time.

“I stayed up til 2 am yesterday perfecting that mockup… WTF do you mean let’s revisit it later?”

“Why wasn’t any of of this brought to our attention when we were validating our lower fidelity wires during team meetings?”

“I just finished user testing… Why are we taking it out of scope!?”

Sound familiar? {eye twitch}

If this sounds like you, you’re not alone. Don’t take these as anything to do you with your proficiency as an effective designer. Rather, revel in the fact your are approaching designer nirvana. These kinds of events chip away at our ego, optimism toward the product, and mental capacity for dealing with any more changes. With every passing day, a voice should grow louder and louder inside of you that says “F*ck all these changes… I’m not wasting anymore time for these a-holes” When this voice has gotten to loud too ignore, you’ve reached designer nirvana. …

Chris Jeong

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