Skip to content

Monday 14 Nov - Sunday 20 Nov 2022


Things I did

Quite a busy week, some of the things I got up to were:

Things I watched

Things I read

Design System Day 2022

So last week and at rather short notice, I offered to facilitate a workshop for this year’s Design System Day.

In this extended weeknotes, mainly to get it out of my head, I write about how it went.

slides from my talk arranged in a grid

Tim Paul tweeted that if you wanted to attend the event but missed out on a ticket, running a workshop got you in and also helped them out because for various reason some planned workshops were no longer able to go ahead.

Enthused and without thinking I fired a message to Tim and offered to throw my hat into the ring.

Oh 💩 I now thought to myself… I’ve got to write a talk, plan a workshop, create some slides or some form of artefacts and generally do a whole big bunch of work to be prepped for facilitating a remote event.

Between that moment and the opening keynote I had a total of 5.5 days, two of which I had solid plans for!

What did I do?

I gave a presentation casestudy about how myself and the team I worked with at Well Pharamcy spent a lot of time carefully convincing and selling stakeholders on the often overlooked value of service and user experience design (including the use of a design system).

I tried to make the point that talking about good design, consistent design and even efficiency gains often fails to cut through. Busy people without an interest in design or much thought for user experience often don’t engage well with those arguments.

Talking about the benefits of inclusive design, progressive enhancement and accessibility in terms of attracting more customers, staying on the right side of the law and doing better than the competition gets people’s attention.

How did it go?

Not as I’d hoped. I managed to put together a talk and a workshop but it was a rush and I felt it showed.

Knowing it was rushed, not rehersed and no opportunity to get feedback about it. I felt like I was flying blind.

During my talk, internally I was so intensly panicked that I suffered globus pharyngeus (I think) and had to fight to be able to speak.

I got through the presentation and moved onto a sort of 1-2-4-all style session of discussion. I asked the following questions:

  1. What tangible benefits has a design system given you or your team?
  2. How do design systems help products and services to be more accessible and inclusive? (or less thinking of Amy’s talk)
  3. How and when can you highlight the benefits of a design system to colleagues and stakeholders?

It’s been a few days now and having digested how it went, I guess it was fine, not an utter disaster (as it initially felt) but it just wasn’t great.

What did I learn?