Is my design good design?

A designer’s self-questionnaire

John Maeda’s notes captioning from Robert Brunner’s words.

When somebody comes to me with a problem, I find it very healthy to question my work on the path that will lead to a solution.

Is my design good design?
Is my design a safe place to be?
Am I looking for a solution outside the problem?

The quick answer to my self-interview-review is to always apply design thinking, however, design thinking is a broad definition that includes a thousand great methodologies and ideas.
Based on the mistakes I make more often, I have created a list of personal favourites to help me day by day:

  • Be creative, because creativity is “the process of having original ideas that have value”.
  • Don’t forget compassion: the problem your buddy is trying to overcome is likely to be other people’s problem, your problem: keep them in mind, keep yourself in mind.
  • Look for adjacencies, how your solution can help solving some other, somebody else’s problem?
  • Designs are conversations, be open to two-way discussions, try not to impose your view.
  • “Technology only matters if people want to participate with it.” If something’s perfect but no one cares to use it, what points are you trying to prove?
  • Don’t be attached, to your ideas, to your ego, to the first iteration. Test as much as you can.
  • Give people well-marked roads and landmarks, then let them shift into four-wheel drive.
  • An effective design does the maximum of the job requiring the minimum possible effort from who’s interacting with it.
  • Be happy. Bring home the same happiness you wish people will experience using the result of your work.
  • Being a designer is a choice. Do good things.