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5 Years From Now Where Do You See Your Design Career?

UX Planet — Medium | Guy Ligertwood

Question 17: What does the future hold for our designers?

20 Designers, 20 Weeks, 1 Question Per Week

Learn from twenty experienced designers as we go deep into one question every week.

This week we look at what the future holds for our designers

Previous articles in the series (so far)

Intro Article: Get to know the designers
Question 1: How did you get into design?
Question 2: How your typical work day?
Question 3: What things you wish you knew when you started in design?
Question 4: What are the best ways for you to stay inspired?
Question 5: What do you want to see in my UX design portfolio?
Question 6: 5 important questions you need to be able to answer in the UX interview
Question 7: 5 design books every UX designer should read
Question 8: Imposter syndrome: Your experience with it as a designer and tips to manage it
Question 9: 5 non designer books every UX designer should read
Question 10: What’s the best design advice you’ve ever received?
Question 11: 5 things that make a great UX designer
Question 12: What have you struggled with in your your career and how did you overcome it?
Question 13: How do you juggle your life, work and keeping up with the design industry?
Question 14: What product have you recently seen that made you think this is great design and why?
Question 15: What tools do you use to design better and be more productive?
Question 16: How do you see the future of UX design?
Question 17: (you’re here) 5 years from now where do you see your design career?

Stephanie Engle — Product Designer at Cruise Automation, Menlo Park, USA

Nationality:

American 🇺🇸

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

Mostly I just want to be solving important problems with good people. Ideally I’ll continue working on a mix of hardware and software, but maybe I’ll go deeper into the people management side.

Where can people follow you?

On Twitter

Andrew Doherty — CEO, Another.ai, Berlin, Germany

Formerly Product Design Manager at Google, Mountain View

Nationality:

Australian 🇦🇺

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

I’m betting the farm on emotion design in artificial intelligence, so in 5 years I’ll either be successfully working to solve planet scale problems, or I’ll be broke and destitute and trying to write a book about failure 🙂

Where can people follow you?

My website or on Medium

Nirissa Govender — Product Designer at Majid Al Futtaim in Dubai

(*Since we started the series Nirissa has moved from Standard Bank in South Africa to Product Designer at Majid Al Futtaim in Dubai)

Nationality:

South African 🇿🇦

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

I’m keen to explore different industries within the next 5 years. Hopefully around the world.

Where can people follow you?

My Linkedin

Adham Dannaway — Senior UI/UX designer, Contract/Freelance, Sydney, Australia

Nationality:

Australian 🇦🇺

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

This might look like a fairly simple question to answer for most designers, but I find myself struggling to answer it. Throughout my career I’ve worked as a freelancer, a contractor and a full time staff member. I’ve worked in large corporates, agencies and small startups across a range of industries. There are various pros and cons attached to working in each of these different situations.

The pros and cons are dependent on a bunch of variables such as; the team, the project, the boss, the culture, the industry, the money, the technology and of course, the work.

Even after having experienced working in all of these different areas, I’m still not really sure what I’ll be doing 5 years from now. I’m pretty sure I’ll still be designing digital products in some way, shape or form. Maybe I’ll have my own consultancy or build an app to help improve the world in some way? Maybe I’ll get back to blogging and freelancing from home? Will I become a manager and have a team of my own, or find a company with a vision that inspires me and settle down with them? Perhaps I’ll just continue helping companies on a short term basis as a contractor?

At this point, I’m not really sure. There’s a bunch of emerging technologies that I’d love to explore including; the blockchain and Etherium, AR and VR, AI and machine learning and voice commands.

I guess I have a case of “choice paralysis” with all of the cool things that are happening in the tech industry at the moment.

Will these new technologies affect my career as a designer? Definitely. Uncertainty can be a bit scary, but it’s also pretty damn exciting.

Where can people follow you?

adhamdannaway.com

Ben Huggins — Sr Interaction Designer, YouTube, San Francisco, USA

Nationality:

American 🇺🇸

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

Probably doing similar stuff — leading a small team to tackle interesting problems. Maybe by then I’ll switch it up and try a moustache instead of a beard.

Where can people follow you?

hugg.in or I’m @bhuggins on Twitter and Instagram

Chirryl-Lee Ryan (aka Cheech) — Transdisciplinary Designer

Nationality:

Australian 🇦🇺

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

The best thing about the future is no one knows what’s going to happen next. There’s no roadmap or rules, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I have no idea what I’ll be doing in 5 years.

Where can people follow you?

My Linkedin

Audrey Liu — Director of Product Design at Lyft, San Francisco, USA

(*Audrey has recently moved from Director Of Product Design at Thumbtack to Director of Products Design at Lyft 🙌)

Nationality:

American 🇺🇸

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

So hard to say, but I would definitely like to be spending more time writing and working on a few side projects. I would also like to be teaching a class or two.

Where can people follow you?

My Twitter

Nick Babich — Development Team Manager, Ring Central, Russia

Nationality:

Russian 🇷🇺

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

I’m a big fan of learning new things and working with junior designers. I see a huge opportunity in working with people who just recently moved to the field (especially from non-design fields).

Hopefully, in 5 years I’ll be able to create a strong UX training program for junior designers so they’ll be able to learn new things really quickly. The major challenge is to combine strong theoretical basis together with practical skills. I also want to develop better coaching skills (maybe switch to coaching completely).

Where can people follow you?

UX Planet, Twitter Facebook

Kymberlee Ide — VP, Experience Design — FCV Interactive

Nationality:

Canadian 🇨🇦

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

Tough question. It means I’ll still be buying lottery tickets with the hope of winning one day. 🙂

In all seriousness though, I love what I do. I can’t imagine doing anything else, short of animal rescue — my other passion.

I hope to be doing exactly what I do, but with a heavier focus toward product design, especially in emerging markets. We’re going to see a lot of change and evolution in some big areas — financial, health, etc. which have historically been behind the 8-ball when it comes to experience and design. But as we continue to progress, a lot more pressure and focus will be on these industries to proactively provide utility and value to users.

I honestly just want to be part of (and leading) initiatives that make people’s lives better. However that ends up looking in the future is yet to be seen. Either way — count me in!

Where can people follow you?

My Linkedin

Alessandro Floridi — UX Manager at Deloitte, Sydney, Australia

(*Alex has recently moved from UX Manager at Deloittte to UX Design Lead at Macquarie Group 🙌)

Nationality:

Italian 🇮🇹

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

The best possible scenario is that in 5 years time I will be able to retire. If that doesn’t happen I see myself in the same industry, in fact I was never able to change it. I love solving problems using design and I love how design has changed and influenced many industries.

In 5 years from now perhaps I will help companies creating personalities for robots and designing interactions within vbbots and humans in different environments.

Where can people follow you?

My Linkedin

Buzz Usborne — Product Designer at Help Scout, Sydney, Australia

Nationality:

British 🇬🇧 and recently Australian 🇦🇺

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

A couple of years ago I realized that despite being in leadership positions working in the types of companies and industries that excited me — I was missing being more involved in the day-to-day design process.

I found that being “on-the-tools” satisfied a deep craving for problem solving that I could never truly get as a manager — like an itch I could never scratch.

Since then I’ve moved to a role where I do just that… I design, I code and I absolutely love it. Hopefully 5 years from now I’ll be doing the same as I am today rather than chasing titles or recognition — but hopefully I’ll still be working with the kind of teams that push me and challenge me to continually improve.

Additionally the next 5 years I also hope to be a mentor to more designers — it’s more of a lead-by-example type approach, which I see as a really important way of giving back to an industry that’s been kind to me.

Where can people follow you?

My work at buzzusborne.com, my Twitter, my writing on Medium and my resume on Linkedin

Kylie Timpani — Senior Designer at Humaan, Perth, Australia

Nationality:

Australian 🇦🇺

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

In the last couple of years I have found myself enjoying teaching and taking a more active role in mentoring new designers. I’m energised and motivated by the growth you can see in designers as they gain confidence in their skills and in their new positions.

This was something that was lacking in the early stages of my career and I like to do my best to ensure this isn’t the case for designers today. It’s also my way of giving back to the community.

Eventually I’d love for this to be a core part of what I do day to day. So, five years from now I hope I’m in a position, whether thats in leadership or something similar, that allows me to help designers grow into their own.

I think I’m okay at what I do but I’d love to see a million more designers surpass my skills over and over. Imagine the good they could do!

Where can people follow you?

My Twitter and also on my Dribbble for haphazardly timed insights into my work.

Graeme Fulton — Writer, coder, designer at Marvel Gibraltar, UK

Nationality:

British 🇬🇧

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

Things don’t often go to plan! So let’s try 1 year at a time:

2018

I left the workforce and went full time on side projects this year, shipping the new Prototypr site on Product Hunt (www.producthunt.com/posts/prototypr-io-2). It wasn’t a big risk, I’ve been building up to it, experimenting with ideas for years. I will release 1 or 2 new products this year.

2019

By 2019 I should have the income from a couple bootstrapped products, giving me some time back. ✈️Maybe try living in Argentina or something.

2020

We all get lucky breaks along the way (who makes the luck, you do!). IBM hired me for one, and then Marvel offered a role that gave me the chance to work on writing and code from anywhere I liked. I told them my plans to leave after 1 year during the interview process, and they encouraged me to do that when the year came round. So by 2020 I hope to be in a position where I can encourage and support people in the same way. Maybe they can work with me for a bit, until they’re ready to launch something of their own.

2021

Contributing to some communities that are defining the future of AI and stuff.

2022

Maybe in 2022 I’ll go and learn philosophy or languages. Or what about the design degree I never studied 😛 ..that’s a vague plan that’s been in my head, thanks to Guy for helping me get it on paper!

Where can people follow you?

My Twitter

Kaiting Huang — Interaction Designer at Google, in Seattle, USA

Nationality:

Taiwanese 🇹🇼

5 years from now where do you see your design career?

In Design in Tech Report 2018, design guru John Maeda distinguishes three types of designers:

  1. Classical designers who make good crafts.
  2. Design thinkers who adopt a problem-solving mindset to address customer needs.
  3. Computational designers who understand code, know what’s possible and ask questions about ethical issues that come with the design. They apply the core skills of classical designers and design thinkers on the virtual materials (data, models, algorithm) that allow them to design at large scale. They are also actively learning AI and the emerging technologies.

In 5 years, I see my career evolving into a computational design one, where my creative canvas is extended from design tools to algorithms. I’ll be able to do a wide range of experiments that either fulfill personal interests or solve real problems.

I want to be truly proud of the things I create and the causes I fight for.

Where can people follow you?

My Medium

If you enjoyed this…

Read the other articles in this series

Intro Article: Get to know the designers
Question 1: How did you get into design?
Question 2: How your typical work day?
Question 3:What things you wish you knew when you started in design?
Question 4: What are the best ways for you to stay inspired?
Question 5: What do you want to see in my UX design portfolio?
Question 6: 5 important questions you need to be able to answer in the UX interview?
Question 7: 5 design books every UX designer should read
Question 8: Imposter syndrome: Your experience with it as a designer and tips to manage it
Question 9: 5 non designer books every UX designer should read
Question 10: What’s the best design advice you’ve ever received?
Question 11: 5 things that make a great UX designer
Question 12: What have you struggled with in your your career and how did you overcome it?
Question 13: How do you juggle your life, work and keeping up with the design industry?
Question 14: What product have you recently seen that made you think this is great design and why?
Question 15: What tools do you use to design better and be more productive?
Question 16: How do you see the future of UX design?
Question 17: (you’re here) 5 years from now where do you see your design career?

Thanks for the read, before you go

Clap 👏 👏 👏 if you enjoyed this article, so others can find it
Comment 💬 if you have a question you’d like to ask the designers
Follow me Guy Ligertwood to read all the articles in the series

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5 Years From Now Where Do You See Your Design Career? was originally published in UX Planet on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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