Being a great UXer takes a lot of work.
You need to be creative, empathetic, articulate, and patient (among many, many, other qualities). And those traits don’t just manifest overnight.
Like an athlete, you need to train and exercise your UX muscles as often as possible to stay in top form.
To help keep your UX game at its best, we’ve collected a few helpful exercises to keep you in tip-top shape. So put on your legwarmers and headbands, and get to work!
This exercise comes from the folks at How Design News, and it’s a great way to flex your creative muscles—especially if your team is feeling a bit stuck.
When you’re feeling less than creative, one of the best ways to get unstuck is to prove to yourself you’ve still got it. While you may think you’re fresh out of ideas, at the end of this exercise—a whopping three minutes—you’ll have a list of creative solutions to a really big problem.
This exercise is a great reminder that solving problems can be a great motivator, and time—or the lack of it—shouldn’t stall your creative process.
- What was the party called? - Was there a theme to the party? - Who was invited? - Was there a dress code? - Would there be food or refreshments
Next the group will review each invitation individually. After everyone has presented, the group will narrow down the ideas and concepts to form the final design.
While a party invitation may not sound totally relevant to onboarding at first, it turns out to be a great way to illustrate the process. After all, when we’re onboarding customers or users, we’re inviting them to use our product or service, right? This exercise will help teams reframe the onboarding process in a way that’s both insightful and fun.
This one comes from our very own head of product and engineering, Mark Towfiq. While it was designed to be an interview tool for designers, it’s also a great way to get individuals and teams to develop better holistic thinking skills when it comes to user research and user-centered design.
Next ask each participant to explain why the design changed from model to model and discuss amongst the group. While you can give some guidance on what you’re looking for, it’s helpful to start out with as little instruction as possible so you can see what your team comes up with on their own.
This exercise is meant to be less structured because you want to get a better understanding of how your team thinks about—and understands—design.
Based on your participants' answers, you’ll get a better understanding of how well they understand the relationships between social, technical, and design influences. It will also help participants practice their communication and empathy skills as they go through the exercise of explaining the rationale behind each design.
Creating delightful experiences isn’t easy, but you can do it with a regular practice. Try these exercises with your teams, and share any additional exercises you’ve tried and loved with us on Twitter.
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