Posted by Andrew VanderPloeg
For many of our design projects, we have a process whereby we print out all the designs we are working on and either stick them up on a wall or lay them out on a table in some semblance of order and do an overview of the entirety of the design project to date. This is mostly done with design projects like a website, a book or a magazine where there are many pages to be designed and a number of different structures and layouts.
I’m currently managing a web project where we got to the point of doing this process and was reminded of how valuable it is to be able to see the whole project in one big overview. We were quickly able to pick out and deal with inconsistencies in the structure of the site that would have presented significant usability issues to website visitors had they gone unnoticed.
But it strikes me that this isn’t only a valuable procedure in the context of a design project. It’s also something that we should be doing from an organizational standpoint on a regular basis. At times, we can get so caught up in our specific area of responsibility, that we miss out on how what we’re doing in our area might be out of step with the organization as a whole.
So do your best to keep the big picture in the back of your mind as you go about your day-to-day work and make time on a regular basis to purposefully step back as an individual or team and evaluate whether you’re on track or not with each of your endeavors.