Truly inspired design means solving business objectives.
If you haven’t already, read the intro & summary which explain why I wrote these thoughts down in the first place.
No designer would say that their job is to make something look good - however, every designer is aware of this fundamental perception of our discipline.
Every project we begin has either a single business objective or a set of interrelated initiatives. The business owner has identified a core issue that our engagement is solving, so we focus on that issue - that is the designer’s north star. I also hope that this is where we get most of our inspiration.
One tool we’ve developed to focus our design work is the “High Value Pathway” model, which identifies the most important user journeys and the specific pages and interactions along that journey. Each step in that journey is broken out into discrete elements - some of which we highlight as being the key focal areas that address the core business objectives.
When presenting our solutions back to the client, it’s a powerful moment when a designer identifies the specific elements that relate back to the client’s business objectives. Moments like these clarify that design isn’t about design, but rather the successful integration of many disciplines and decisions into a single meaningful solution.