7 times a UX designer should ask the right questions

Art is for multiple purposes its for the artist to reflect and convey his thoughts as well as the viewer to interpret it his way. Designing is for the user and for the designers to know the user they need to ask questions that matter.

#1 Try and avoid asking yes no questions to the user

Yes No questions are utter waste of time when you want to dig deeper into the users mind and thinking and what they feel and think about the way they are doing things.

#2 Tone of questions

Keep the tone of questions friendly and to the point. Do not make it sound like a question they want to avoid. Usually, this happens to the topics which the users aren’t very comfortable with. At that time make sure you frame the question which sits well with them and dosn’t ring the danger bell in their head. Making them aware that they can talk about those topics in front of you and they can trust you.

#3 Experience sharing before questions

You can share fake experiences or real experiences before asking a question. I know this dosn’t sound right, but some times you have to make the other person relate to you for them to answer truthfully or you will leave with pages full of fake answers.

After this comes the part where you ask questions and find answers yourself.

#4 Questioning the research ‘Post Its’ you have put up on the wall

Assumptions versus Reality. Questioning and separating assumptions that you put up while research analysis. Asking yourself if the post it you have put up is something you have observed while researching or is it said by the user? If it isn’t then its probably an assumption. Separating assumptions make you come to the problem statement faster and being more accurate.

#5 The Problem statement

Include a what and why in your problem statement. How can we help the user tackle the problem that they are facing. What can we do to enable the user tackle the problem that they are facing.

Then comes the user scenrios,

#6 Does your user understand the terms you are using

In information architecture asking yourself if the information hierarchy is in sync with the users mental model. Mental models of the users is quite evident in the research itself if you ask the right questions.

Each user group has a particular environment and knowledge base. There are terms which only the users can understand that you might not be able to understand. Ask yourself if the terms you using in your design is understood by the user? If its not them change them to make it user familiar.

#7 What if questions in task flows

Keep asking what if questions to yourself while designing the work flow in the wireframe. Most of the times we think linearly as the task flow progresses missing out on some use cases that might become bugs later.

To avoid that keep asking “What if the user clicks on this while on this page?”. This will enable you to create wireframes and reduce clutter.

Usability testing questions becomes a new topic in itself.

Ask the right questions to get the right answers for you to be on track while designing.

Whys, Whats and Hows are our best buds , keep them close.