UX Tipping Point
If you’re into studying how design and user interaction are related, you’d agree that an article I read recently lays out a pretty interesting concept, the “UX Tipping Point”. If you’re not interested in those things, I’ll try to keep this short and sweet.
UX stands for User Experience and relates to how design drives a person’s behavior, attitude, and interaction with a particular product or activity. The term is typically used in reference to software, but it can apply to a much broader array of things that we are exposed to in our daily lives at work, at home, for fun, etc. In fact, UX is a much more complex topic that I am far from qualified to discuss, but its something I read up on from time to time because the overall concept is something I find fascinating for some reason.
In the article, the author Jared Spool discusses the phases thru which organizations evolve as they buy into the benefits of focussing on design-driven experiences. The process ranges from the “Dark UX Ages” to “Integrated UX”, and if you’re interested you should read up on it here. It isn’t until just before the last phase that organizations cross the ‘tipping point’, at which point functional and aesthetic design becomes embedded into the workflow for products and services from the very beginning. Eventually, this intentional design works its way into every component such that teams and systems work together seamlessly, efficiently, and even delightfully.
I feel that this same process is true in any business (large or small), whether you are talking about product design, workflow design, or even internal operations. When the pieces all work together, things get done better and quicker. And the good news for smaller teams is that they are typically more flexible and without firmly established roots that are hard to change. It all goes back to intentional planning, and willingness to invest thought and resources on the front end of a venture or project. Over time, the design focus becomes embedded in everything that you do, and compromises are replaced by the ability to rapidly produce great experiences with regularity.