Designing products using best UX practices is much more than wireframes and prototypes. There are many tools a designer must carry around... and know when to use them. The key to success, however, is probably about building good habits and remaining open to new approaches. Here are some of the habits and skills essential to my work so far.
The ideation stage is great for unlocking great ideas without labeling them impossible. I enjoy directing brainstorms and ensuring that group members listen to each other.
Visual communication is part of my process at any stage. I keep my desk well-stocked with sticky notes and markers of all sizes and colors. No better way to show as I tell.
Collaboration is a constant factor during the design process. I actively seek stakeholder feedback, share information with colleagues, and conduct user testing.
Drinking coffee might keep my eyes open during long stretches of work. I keep my brain stimulated and my ideas current by reading and writing, contributing to social media, and testing products on my own.
Teams that value data and research are more open to respectful disagreement. I try to anchor discussions on something more than personal taste and allow each member to do their role well with the right information.
Each project has highs and lows, sometimes dramatically so... Rollercoasters can be both scary and fun. But there is always a reason to do the best you can do as a designer and love it. Making sure I find it every time is key.