The Top Ten Mistakes UX (User Experience) Leaders Make

Top 10 Mistakes UX leaders make

1. Not having a clear understandable process. UX leaders need to build process so new talent can learn and so outsiders can understand UXs value. And even more than just understand, so outsiders can collaborate and participate with the UX team.
2. Putting process before place. UX leaders need to make sure the right tools, supplies, and places to do UX work are available or else no amount of process will save you.
3. Using Usabilty Testing as design arbitrar whenever there are disagreements. Simple A/B testing is not going to take you to the next level.
4. Not playing nicely with Prodct/Project Management.
5. Managing documentation rather than design. We need to be concerned with behavior and impact.
6. Having more requirements documents than design briefs. Feature lists are no substitute for business strategy.
7. Focusing on implementation rather than evolution.
8. Not building unity of purpose both within and outside of your department.
9. Not timeboxing both divergent activities (idea generating) AND convergent activities (decision making & consensus building)
10. Not having enough whiteboards for both group use and individuals. See mistake #2.

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8 Responses to “The Top Ten Mistakes UX (User Experience) Leaders Make”

  1. This is the best list of mistakes to look out for that I’ve ever seen. I would love to see an expanded article that talks about what happens when these things go wrong and if you have any case studies to demonstrate it. I would be more than happy to help you with this 😉

  2. Kevin Makice says:

    This is a great list. UX should speak not to the letter of the law (docs and requirements) but to the spirit (discovery and behavior).

  3. Rob says:

    You skipped #7 🙂

  4. Nick Finck says:

    Very well done. At first glance someone reading this can dismiss these things common mistakes, but if you’ve been doing UX for some time I think you hit the nail on the head here. I have seen pretty much all of these mistakes crop up at some point or another in the companies I have worked for or in the teams that the client manages. Very nicely written.

  5. admin says:

    Hi Nick,
    Thank you for your comments. Yes, I think many of these are the fundamentals, but they need to be solved at a deep level, whereas most of the time it seems they are papered over with gestures.
    I am curious, was there one that seemed to really hit home for you?

  6. admin says:

    Thanks Rob, I added it in. I must have skiped it over transfering from paper to computer. The perils of writing draft on actual paper.

  7. admin says:

    Hi Kevin,
    That is a really great comparison. Thank you very much.

  8. admin says:

    Thank you for your comment. Hmm, an expanded article with case studies. That sounds like a fun idea. Let’s talk about how we will do it when I get back to Philly. ; )

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