Design Strategies StackUp @ Projective Space

Last night I attended a StackUp on startup design practices where four startups presented some ideas and methods they use in regards to their design practices (mostly front end).  As this was for “designers only” I was able to penetrate the high level security of three flights of stairs and a bunch of friendly people.

Although I don’t have any immediate plans to become a visual, UX or UI designer, I’m interested in understanding the language these guys speak and I need to know the various processes designers use and why- At some point I will have a say in these processes as I work with design teams.

Points of interest:

  • The term “designer” is broad and, especially in the startup realm where definitions aren’t so much spelled out, can include an array of functions.
  • Agency processes have been heavily studied and documented, but the startup body of knowledge is only starting to grow.
  • Processes:  Designers at Kickstarter code their own work- this provides a greater sense of ownership and alleviates some handoff issues when the designer gives their work to a developer/engineer.  Product managers meet weekly for product road mapping sessions.  Branch pairs designers and back-end engineers for a few hours during the design process so that they can develop relationships and allow for smooth hand-offs.  HowAboutWe… relies on design focused weekly sprints, daily reviews with the CEO and product and retros (lessons learned).