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  • Leah Henderson

Not The User

Woman On A Computer
Photo by Persnickety Prints on Unsplash

This week, while diving into my master's curriculum, one line jumped off the screen for me, and that is, "You are not the user." Now, this was in the context of discussing designing effective workflows, but I feel this ties into all the work that we create as UX designers. As problem solvers at our core, we can start to become overly confident that "of course" we are always putting the user first. But just because we know this is best, is the user still at the center of our solutions?

When designing for a company that we may fit the user of, it is easy for us to by-pass some of our typical steps and assume that what we want is what everyone wants. We ARE a user here, right? Well, yes and no. Although we may be one of the users, do we cover all of the user's pain points or needs? Or how about the needed goals and context for our persona?

For us to be effective at our jobs, we need to continually remind ourselves that even when we may seem like we are the user, we need to convince ourselves we are not, to keep our brains from going into auto-pilot resulting in sub-par decision making.

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