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Ravi Vyas has been on a quest to improve his product management skills for a decade. As part of that quest, he identified six basic UX principles, which he describes in this post. His aim was to identify a few key principles based on experience and common sense that are easy to forget if you’re not paying attention. (via @ravivyas84)
Product management and user experience (UX) are both necessary roles for any organization that creates products. But just because they are both necessary does not mean they are the same. Jeff Lash transitioned from UX to product management. He now works “with product management leaders and their teams on issues like how product managers can work effectively with UX, and how to clarify responsibilities, activities, and deliverables that often seem to overlap.” When he reflected on those past experiences and conversations he gets into in his current work, he felt compelled to point out that there is more to product management than just user experience. (via @jefflash)
One factor that influences the relationship between UX and product management is where they both sit in your organization’s structure. Brainmates asked Matthew Magain from UX Mastery the question: “Is UX a part of Product Management?” Matt explained that the answer depends on the type of company. “In design-led companies, UX designers will have a seat in the board room; in more technology-centric companies, UX will be seen as subordinate to Product Management.” (via @brainmates)
“User experience (UX) and product management both play an important role in bringing products to market.” The two roles are not interchangeable, but there is some overlap, and if you want a successful product, make sure the roles work in sync. The folks at Justinmindexamine “the differences between UX and product management, as well as show you how and why you should align them in order to improve your product workflow. So if you’re looking for a way to kick that UX v product management angst, read on!” (via @just_in_mind)
“UX is short for User Experience Design, and it can be defined as the branch of design that creates easy-to-use and delightful products that focus on the user’s needs. UX is very important to all Product Managers because it is a key component of the 4 pillars of Product Leadership.” In this post, Daniel Elizalde covers the basics of UX for Product Managers and explains how can you can leverage UX to create better products. (via @delizalde)
That a design is accessible, suggests that the designer did her job. But like all common design terms, ‘accessible’ is misused. Despite efforts, most modern technology products are unusable by many. Jack Strachan sees this changing, with big companies like Microsoft, Uber, and Twitter using sophisticated technologies, like AI, to open up their products and services to all.
The term UX is so bandied about these days, that it’s lost much of its meaning. A designer, eager to appear current, will likely tack the term onto their LinkedIn profile, even if their work does not include key UX processes like “research, synthesis, user testing and iterative prototyping.” So says Burton Rast, who suggests that, in order to further the practice, UX designers should recommit themselves to employing truly human centered processes in their work.
With Product Management being such a cross-functional position, there are naturally many areas in which the Product Manager might conflict with others — perhaps none more than with the UX team. Both roles are invested in the entire user journey, from customer identification to user testing launched products, so toes will be stepped on. In the interest of solidarity, it’s interesting to hear how a UX designer might approach different types of Product Manager, as outlined by Interaction Design Foundation.
Design, by it’s nature, changes fast. So it’s worthwhile pausing to reflect on where trends are heading now and again. Anthony Miller has listed many UX trends he has noticed going into 2018, such as simpler navigation, decluttering of content, and conversational interfaces. Nick Babich lists more 2018 trends related to mobile, such as gestures, vibrant colors and full screen experiences.
Roman Pichler reminds us of our core responsibility as a Product Manager; “to ensure that your product creates the desired value for its customers and users and for the business.” He states that “your job is not to design a great user experience”. That’s a controversial perspective but he defends it by insisting that the UX role should exist within the development team. The emphasis on UX will also vary from product to product depending on how big an impact it should make to the success of the business. This decision will usually be made by the Product Manager. But there are many areas of UX that Product Managers should be comfortable with, including user models (personas), interactions and research.