Push UX 2023: Key Takeaways

The Push UX Conference 2023, held from 19-20 October in Munich, Germany, was an engaging event packed with insightful talks, hands-on workshops, and breakout sessions. It brought together design professionals, product-minded innovators, and creative technologists.

Here are some key takeaways from the event.

The UX Reckoning is Here – Judd Antin

Judd Antin’s talk addressed the significant layoffs in the product and UX design fields post-Covid. He highlighted the business world’s undervaluation of good product design, often viewing these roles as expendable. Antin urged UX professionals to align their language with business goals, understanding P&L statements and board notes to demonstrate the integral role UX plays in boosting productivity and effectiveness.

Key Takeaways:

  • UX professionals must speak the language of business to justify their value.
  • Focus on projects with clear business objectives.
  • Recommended reading: “Influence Without Authority.”

What is Job Love? – Herje Brodersen

Herje Brodersen explored the notion that loving one’s job leads to exceptional products. He argued that while fulfilment is important, it is unrealistic to love every aspect of one’s job. Instead, achieving 10-20% fulfilment can be sufficient.

Key Takeaways:

  • Work should not be expected to provide complete fulfilment.
  • Set realistic expectations for job satisfaction.
  • Recommended reading: “Your Work is Not Your God.”

Blurring Boundaries: Design, Data and Impactful Measurement – Jess Parette, Capitol One

Jess Parette discussed the importance of data in design, advocating for a reverse approach where existing data informs design decisions. She stressed the significance of both subjective (user feedback) and objective (engagement metrics) data in creating optimal designs.

Key Takeaways:

  • Leverage data to drive business change.
  • Use a combination of subjective and objective data.
  • Prioritise user engagement data in decision-making.

Designing a Circular Economy – Serena Bonomi

Serena Bonomi introduced the concept of the circular economy, contrasting it with the traditional linear model. She emphasised designing products with their full lifecycle in mind, ensuring nothing goes to waste.

Key Takeaways:

  • Adopt long-term strategic thinking for product design.
  • Consider the full lifecycle of products.
  • Use digital product passports for transparency.

Effective Communication in Design – Various Speakers

Several sessions focused on the importance of communication in design. Key points included building relationships within teams, understanding stakeholder language, and setting clear objectives for meetings and workshops.

Key Takeaways:

  • Prioritise quality over quantity in interactions.
  • Establish clear communication goals.
  • Use reflection and asynchronous communication to enhance team alignment.

Activity-Based Research – Meena Kothandaraman

Meena Kothandaraman highlighted the challenges of research and the importance of asking the right questions. She advocated for activity-based research, giving users the freedom to express their thoughts and behaviours in their own way.

Key Takeaways:

  • Frame questions to allow open-ended responses.
  • Observe user behaviour and preferences.
  • Incorporate these insights into design processes.

Presenting High-Stake Design Work – Ben Sauer

Ben Sauer emphasised the power of storytelling in presenting design work. He recommended structuring stories to highlight key points and using familiar phrases to reinforce messages.

Key Takeaways:

  • Craft engaging stories to present design concepts.
  • Use clear headlines and attention grabbers.
  • Combine subjective user feedback with objective data.

Better Onboarding – Krystal Higgins

Krystal Higgins discussed effective onboarding practices, advising against separate tutorials and popups. Instead, she recommended integrating onboarding into the product experience to gradually guide users towards becoming core users.

Key Takeaways:

  • Onboarding should be an integral part of the product experience.
  • Use gradual information delivery to engage users.
  • Define and measure what constitutes a “core user.”

Embracing AI in Design – Various Speakers

Several sessions delved into the role of AI in UX design. Key points included understanding AI’s limitations, leveraging it for hyper-personalisation, and preparing for a zero UI future where the best interfaces are those that are invisible.

Key Takeaways:

  • Recognise AI’s emulative capabilities and limitations.
  • Use AI to enhance user journeys through personalisation.
  • Aim for seamless, unobtrusive UI designs.

Accessibility in Product Development – Cecile Jouve and Kateryna Porshnieva

Accessibility was a major theme, with practical tips for making digital products usable for everyone. This included focusing on colour contrasts, clear labelling, and using ARIA libraries for screen readers.

Key Takeaways:

  • Plan for accessibility from the start.
  • Use automated tools to facilitate accessibility.
  • Regularly update and maintain accessible features.

In conclusion, Push UX 2023 provided a wealth of knowledge and actionable insights.