UX Career- UXTALK #24

How can you transform the perception of you to people? — Sofia Scatena

“Bearing in mind that people are not mass-produced objects characterised by the same replicable features, there is no person in this world identical to another. This is what makes you different, your strength.” Sofia Scatena

What is personal branding?

Personal branding aims to answer these questions:

What makes me noticeable? Where does my real value lay? What is my purpose? What are my strengths and weaknesses? Who is interested in my UVP (Unique Value Proposition)?

How to design a portfolio — Bob Falcone

Tips & Tricks to build an effective Design Portfolio

On Personal Brand:

  1. The tone of voice: 1st or 3rd, both of them works fine! The first-person tone of voice is more informal while instead 3rd is more formal but the really important bit is to be authentic.
  2. Show personality: by when the recruiter finishes reading the portfolio, they should get a sense of who you are and your personality.
  3. Show passion: tell a bit about yourself to make it personal, but just a little bit, do not exaggerate.
  4. Do not be afraid to show failures! Show the process and how you managed or how you would have liked to overcome the difficulties. It is still part of what you did, and certainly, it taught you something. What the recruiter wants to see is how you work, what is your process and overall how you come out of a bad project.
  5. Avoid clichés in your portfolio, make it yours.

How to present your process:

  1. Show your process: Do share how you approached a project from concept to solution. Avoid dropping a bunch of photos on the page without context and call it done.
  2. Storytelling: in a portfolio, the aim should be to make the viewer feel something! Be passionate about your journey. Describe your story, include all the needed parts a story usually have: a beginning ( hero banner or image, beauty shot, intro description, key final designs…) a middle part (that might be the description of your process, neatly curated mood boards, sketches, users flows design deliverables..), the End (that could be the findings, takeaways, final ‘beauty’ hero shot, quote, links to press, full process or prototype)
  3. Give credit & explain your role: be clear about what you did, and describe how you worked in a team.
  4. Include research findings for credibility: you are not designing by your assumptions, but your hypothesis is based on research and the user’s needs.
  5. Make an impact with numbers and statistics: include quantitative and qualitative research and use data and statistics to show the results.
  6. Remember to Embed your prototype, show don’t tell!
  7. Use a personal domain just to make it more professional, but keep in mind that pdf works just fine! You don't need to have it online.
A guideline on what and how to include in your portfolio

Recommendations on the User Experience of your portfolio

  1. Don’t forget that you are not the audience! You are designing your portfolio to get a job, not just as a personal design exercise. Make sure that information is clear on your portfolio.
  2. To the recruiter's eye, you are good as the worst project in your portfolio. Be aware of what you should include and what you should leave apart. Quality over quantitative! 3 to 4 projects are enough to showcase your expertise.
  3. Demonstrate your flexibility in teamwork and projects.
  4. Include side projects! Share your passion and other abilities, but make sure it doesn't create noise in the portfolio.

Polish it! It’s all in the details

Currently, the best sites to build a portfolio (with no code skills)
  1. Don’t share the draft, but just the final result of the portfolio. Each section should be curated and precise.
  2. To make it more professional and always up to date, use as mockups the latest models of the phones or tech devices you are designing for.
  3. It is fine to use a template for your portfolio but make sure it is not too general or neutral, make your personality standing out.

Beyond the portfolio

  1. Share it on LinkedIn! I know it is boring but that is where jobs are!
  2. Do your own research beforehand. What kind of job do you want? Modify your portfolio depending on the kind of job you are applying for. Change the nature, the aims based on what’s best to share for a specific position.

The portfolio should always remain fluid, and change appearance depending on the ambitions and position for which you are applying for.

Claudia Di Stefano — Flexibility and Divergent thinking is what companies are looking for, and what designers usually know how to practice

“The strength of UX resides in the central position given to the human side of a project, how the user needs fit into the user capabilities of the product: think of the people’s behaviour behind everything, and how the technology is currently used or could be used.”

Hence, why is UX expertise crucial not only in UX jobs but also in any kind of career?

Federica Falcini — When to translate from one company to another, and how to include it into your portfolio

When I evaluate a new job, I usually look for challenges. Curiosity and impact are what drives me. This is how I changed from different positions and achieved rich knowledge about a wide range of subjects. Suggestion: Share with your interviewer what is the reason why you moved from a company to another one, what you expect and why, and finally your vision about the theme you will be involved in. This is the key to my success.

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Experience Design Academy

Experience Design Academy

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A polytechnic centre of excellence dedicated to User Experience - by POLIdesign.