Why designers need to step outside design

“We are not engaged in rocket science. It’s safe to bring Notdesigners into our world.”

The phrase above accurately sums up this article. It talks about how designers need to know how to speak “their language” to Notdesigners (everyone that isn’t a designer). The article spoke about a NASA scientist explaining the failure of a the Space Shuttle Challenger. Richard Feynman described the material of the space shuttle as “stuff.” He was able to reach the audience because they wanted to know what happened, not what the shuttle was made out of.

I believe that this article is completely applicable to our every day life as a designer. Every kind of project that we are awarded as firms has to be presented over and over to the client. We design for the client. If the client doesn’t understand, our design fails, no matter how good it is. I have gone through the process of “dumbing” down my work several times just to my family. Every time I come home I have to be able to tell them what my project means and what it is in a language they would understand.

The article also made a good point that without Notdesigners, there would be no one to tell us that we are wrong. Designers have a bad habit of not taking criticism well and believing that everything they do is right. Thankfully all of these bumps can be smoothed out starting in college. We present and design every day, I believe this article made me more aware of what Notdesigners may think when we present. It will just make us a better designer.


Sharples, Jonty. “Why Designers Need to Step outside Design.” Why Designers Need to Step outside Design. Hactar, 4 Feb. 2015. Web. 30 June 2015. <http://www.creativebloq.com/web-design/why-designers-need-step-outside-design-11514009&gt;.



One thought on “Why designers need to step outside design

  1. kordia says:

    I think it is good for us to always remember that the majority of our users and clients are not designers. I know we can get stuck in our “archi-speak” often during school or as we are discussing work with peers. It is important to know how to explain concepts and benefits of design to the average person. Non-designers can also offer a perspective or a solution that we may not have noticed simply because they bring a different perspective and background to the table.


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