“If the calling is true, though we may not have gone where we intended, we will surely end up where we need to be.”
―Steve Goodier

Do you feel a strong pain and frustration with certain aspects of the status quo? Do you have a vision of what could be? As you go about your life, do you hear the persistent call? How do you choose to answer it?

This is a post about the calling to challenge, change, and mold what is. Born from an extreme sensitivity with the way things work, and a persistent knowing that there is a better way. A knowing that things can be made easier, more available, more accessible, more enabling. A knowing that well-designed solutions can allow people to achieve more, and by doing so, can allow the rest of the world to achieve more.

 

The world is designed

All things made to be used by humans have been designed — whether the creator realized it or not. As a human going through her day and having tasks to complete, I see more often than not, how something works in a way that doesn’t favor the person on the other side.

How inhuman is that? To create something to be used by others without a single consideration with how they will actually use it.

And yet, it happens multiple times a day, everywhere you look.

From the phone system that makes you select several options, to eventually be connected to someone, who asks you the same questions all over again. To the website you use to make a payment, and it’s so confusing you don’t even know where to get started. To the software program that has so many features screaming for attention that you feel like you landed in Vegas, when all you just wanted was easy access to the few things you needed to get done.

But how will they know what you needed to get done, if they never asked you in the first place? How is something built for people, without involving the people who will use it in the process? It sounds so common sense, and yet it’s not so common.

Experiencing interactions like these first hand, and seeing others struggle day after day, calls me to do something about it. It calls me to deeply understand people, their needs, wants, desires and what they are trying to achieve. And to think hard and problem-solve on their behalf. To design a solution that is not only easy and delightful to use, but one that is tailored to them and their specific needs.

Whether this solution is a software application, an event, a customer service interaction, or the feel of a physical space. If you’re creating something for people, you need to care about them, and understand their intent and goals. You need to leave your ego at the door and understand that you’re designing for someone else, not yourself. “I am not the user” is a mantra many designers use, and wish other product creators would too.

 

The visions of what will be

While there are so many bad solutions out there, imagine the problems that are still yet to be solved?

Think of the elderly man, who falls at home, to only be found 2 days later laying on the ground, unable to call for help? What if we could create a solution that automatically alerts a family member in an event like this? Even better, what if a solution could predict an emergency before it became one?

And how about the factory worker, who won’t get a job opportunity unless he has previous experience? What if he had access to a solution where he could start working right away and be trained on the job? What if he could also call a remote expert to see what he sees, and help solve a problem that came up? How many more people would be given a chance if this was brought to reality?

And the autonomous vehicle, that would prevent the over 3,200 deaths that happen every day due to road crashes in the world?

 

The calling to be a designer

I’m a designer because I believe that everyone has the right to benefit from technology. I believe that it is a human right to achieve one’s full potential, and to have access to something designed with your needs in mind. No matter your color, your ethnicity, or your social class.

Talent is universal, opportunity is not. It is the role of design to democratize technology. If technology is the great enabler, then design is the great equalizer of human potential.

 

It is my mission to improve human life through design.
To give access to those who don’t have it.
To enable what was once impossible.
To give a chance to those who thought they’d never have it.
To make people feel they matter.
To make people feel that someone cared enough to create something tailored to their needs.

 

Design is about caring for people, in a very human way.
Caring enough to truly listen and understand.
And to problem-solve for them.
To think hard so they don’t have to.
So they can get the access they need, and go on about their day
To doing the more important things in life.
To making the difference in the world they were meant to make.

 

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