This is a question that every UX professional faces at some point: is it better to be a UX generalist—for example, practicing both user research and UX design—or is it better to specialize—perhaps in a specific domain? Companies often question whether a team of UX generalists or a mix of specialists is best.
I might be the ideal person to answer this question. Over the last 15 years, I’ve had the unusual experience of starting out as a UX design generalist, becoming a user research specialist, and again becoming a UX design generalist. In this column, I’ll discuss the advantages and disadvantages of generalization and specialization for UX professionals and the companies that hire them. Read More
The role of UX Strategist has been popping up lately in job descriptions, discussion forums, and professional profiles on the Web. Clients have assigned this role to me on a number of consulting projects. Some of my colleagues have taken UX Strategist as their new title. But what does a UX Strategist do that’s different from, say, a UX Architect or a UX Designer or a Director of User Experience? Does this role open up a new career path for UX professionals, or is this title just a way of making our work sound more important? Recently, I did some research, and I’d like to use this edition of my column UX Strategy to take a stab at defining the role of UX Strategist as it stands today. Read More
In this special sesquicentennial (150th) edition of Ask UXmatters, our expert panel ponders the future of UX design. Our panelists discuss the sustainability of the discipline of User Experience, specialization in the UX professions, required skills for UX designers, the value of T-Shaped people; merging the best practices of Product Management, User Experience, and Engineering; sharing the ownership of User Experience, the growing importance of design as strategy, user experiences of future technologies—including interacting with our environments—and how all of this can help us create a better world.
I want to thank the many UX experts who have contributed to Ask UXmatters since its first edition, “Choosing the Language for a User Interface,” in November 2008. We have covered a wide variety of UX topics since then, including strategy, user research, design validation, working with stakeholders, agile and Lean methodologies, systems engineering and interrelated systems, and artificial intelligence. We’ve seen tremendous growth in the field of User Experience since 2008. This column would not be a success without the time and efforts of our more than 100 expert-panel members, from six of the world’s seven continents. Thanks to the many readers of Ask UXmatters as well. I sincerely hope that this column helps you to advance and grow in our field. Read More