Frameworks aren’t meant to protect you from failure, they’re just there as a starting point for you to build upon.
Let me tell you, if you’ve studied or read anything about design, you’re probably familiar with at least one design process framework that describes what the process of designing a product should be. There are few elements which are not represented, not that they are missing. It simply means it is for your creative self to discover. On my journey as a Product Designer, Community builder I discover new perspectives every day.
Here are some of them:
UNDERSTANDING, EXPLORING AND MATERIALIZING THE PROBLEM STATEMENT
There are a lot of different shapes that illustrate this process in circles, loops, diamonds, double diamonds, spiral you name it. But at the end of the day, they all stand for the same idea, that this is a never-ending loop of learning and iterating.
Empathy is not a phase or step of design rather it is a constant emotion throughout the design process. You have to step in & step out flexing different hats throughout the process.
Design in my mind is a team sport, not just because many heads work better than one, but because you need diversity to remove different design biases and make it more inclusive and acceptable for mass adoption. With a diverse, multidisciplinary team you can go deep and wide simultaneously and you can bounce ideas off each other. On your own, you’re probably just scratching the surface.
Fear of missing out. In the rush, of getting things done you tend to take shortcuts, which likely means skipping crucial parts of the ideal process. You might also find yourself landing on a moving train that is pretty hard to stop and even harder to turn it around. Pausing & having those timely reflections can help you better manage the sense of direction.
SOLVING THE WRONG PROBLEM
This one is often a side effect of the points above, but not limited to that. Even if you think you’re taking all the right steps in the process, that doesn’t mean you’re doing them right, and you might still find yourself solving the wrong problem.
PERFECTION IS A MYTH
People don’t always know that they need something new until you put it in front of them, and as we’ve experienced time and time again, disruption is inevitable, so if someone is about to disrupt your product, it’s best that someone is you.
JUST DOING WHAT YOU’RE TOLD
This is the end of creativity. One example is projects that are heavily directed by process framework and fear to tweak the process or sometimes not follow the process. Thinking out of box when needed to experiment or change has to be encouraged.
JUST GIVING THEM WHAT THEY ASK
Another is when teams lean too heavily on user feedback. Considering them as facts and feeding into next design iteration without validation rather than trying to understand the root of the problem.
IT’S NEVER DONE
Once your designs are built, you may think that you’re done, but you’re not. That’s when the real story begins. That’s when you truly measure the impact of the work, evaluate the user’s response and use all the learning to your advantage. Until then you’re merely projecting an estimated value.
TRY TO DO IT WITH STYLE
You will never have best conditions, there are always constraints, designing with constraints by bringing your soft skills and personality to play is what can make it unique and stand-out.