Overheard:

The question for [design and engineering] to ask is, “Who are we solving this problem for?” And then, “How do we know we’re really solving that problem or not?” Too often it’s easy for designers and engineers to solve designer-y problems and engineering-y problems, respectively. This happens the better one gets at their discipline — it’s a constant struggle to stay close to the problem, instead of hanging closer to just “the discipline.”

John Maeda

The single biggest mistake I see tech leaders make is to assess the value of individual team members by the number of tickets they close.

That mistake is the root cause of the number one challenge faced by developers: Unrealistic expectations. When you focus on an individual’s count of closed job tickets, you ignore the wider context of the project work and normal team dynamics, and the results can be disastrous: Poor morale, poor developer retention, and slowed productivity.

Eric Elliott in The Essential Guide to Building Balanced Development Teamsa great article recommended to me by a superb senior developer

On Making America … Again

“I purchased and configured [makeamericanastyagain.com] right after watching the debate,” says Weber, “chief semicolon advocate” at Automattic. “Apparently, my way of calming down and feeling like a productive citizen after watching these incredibly troubling, offensive Trump performances is to purchase domains and redirect them to Secretary Clinton’s site.

– Angela Watercutter, in Clinton Camp Isn’t Behind makeamericanastyagain.com – But it Should Be

teamwork

It can definitely feel like a multiple personalities situation. Going from an advertisement to the home page to a landing page to a sign-up page to the first use of the product to ongoing use and into the billing form for example, that might feel like six or seven different products. If you are going through one of those experiences and you come across a really high contrast transition – aesthetically, branding wise, interface wise – there’s a good chance there were very different personnel involved in creating those two high-contrast experiences.

A lot of times it’s like you’re actually working with two people as soon as you click the next button and are taken to something that’s completely different.

– Sam Hulick, “Samuel Hulick on building better onboarding

onboarding

I’ll speak with companies and they’ll be excited to say, “In Q2 we’re going to launch our onboarding.” It’s always a little something that I wince at, because it sounds like they’re treating it as the launch of a discrete feature you can walk away from. They’re not necessarily looking at it as an evolving element of product-market fit.

In the same way that you wouldn’t launch customer support and then be done with it, you want to have your user onboarding – especially if you’re not looking at it as the definition of some pixels that show up on a screen but rather the process of helping people become successful while adopting your product – to evolve as your market evolves and your product evolves and your customer base evolves. It’s something that ideally involves constant iteration and evolution.

– Sam Hulick, in “Sam Hulick on building better onboarding