28 February 18 -

Super8: Eight intriguing articles from February.

Fun fact: February is the only month of 2018 that can pass without a full moon. Never fear; I won’t leave you in the dark, even though there’s technically less lunar light than usual, with eight eclectic articles to phase into your reading orbit.

February may be short and sweet, but it still packs a punch when it comes to content. This month, explore a 99-day sprint, check out full-stack freelancers, and find out the best way to learn anything. It’s Super8 in February!

1. How to gain widespread adoption of your design system.

  • Read the full article here.
  • Written by Julie Nergararian .  
  • Contributor: Kurt Smith.

As Julie Nergararian shares in her article: redesigns only work when co-owned by designers and developers. With our designers and developers seated side by side—we enjoy reading up on how large (and small) companies undertake the mammoth effort involved.

Ensuring an awesome user experience is a shared responsibility, and partnership during this process is key. Covering everything from documentation to execution, Julie discusses how co-ownership has helped build better outcomes at HubSpot.

2. The best UX is no user interface at all.

  • Read the full article here.
  • Written by Burke Holland.  
  • Contributor: Lucas Mounsey. 

It’s hard to ignore that times are a changin’ in the tech world. With Voice services like Amazon Echo, Google Home and Apple’s HomePod becoming mainstream, we need to consider what these new tools mean for digital UI.

In this article by Burke Holland, he discusses why even ‘perfect’ UI is less than ideal. Any UI, no matter how well crafted, is a necessary evil between the user and action. Burke uses examples where Alexa trumps traditional UI, but explains why we’re not quite in Spike Jonze’s ‘Her‘ territory just yet.

3. A wombat, post-it notes, and a 16 million person survey.

  • Read the full article here.
  • Written by Jemma Wight.
  • Contributor: Vivi Chau. 

Regardless of your stance on how the Australian Marriage Equality Survey was conducted, the logistics behind it were nothing short of staggering. Jemma Wight shares her insight on the fast, accurate delivery of the vote’s results in just 99 days.

By applying an agile methodology, their team were able to overcome practical hurdles with a few stats: a 99 day sprint, a 50-person task force, 24 hour operation, 15 concurrent streams of activity, and one speedy wombat.

4. Warning: this is not your grandfather’s talent planning.

  • Read the full article here.
  • Written by First Round.
  • Contributor: Zoe Warne.

If you’re a manager or in HR, knowing the difference between a ‘superstar’ and a ‘rockstar’ can take you one step closer to building a better team. Looking past the novelty titles for a moment, every person within your organisation is fueled by different motivations and career goals.

As the team at First Round explain: there are people who want a world they can change, and those who seek a world they can stabilise. Here’s why high performing teams need both.

5. The rise of the full-stack freelancer.

  • Read the full article here.
  • Written by Tiago Forte. 
  • Contributor: Rowan Barnes.  

Freelancers may be known for their specialised skill sets, but the emergence of the ‘full-stack freelancer’ brings something new to the table. Full-stack freelancers boast a portfolio of skills within their wheelhouse. It gives them flexibility in their service offering—as well as a diversified revenue stream to draw upon.

So what can we learn? The idea is not limited to individuals; it can be applied to agencies too. Find out how to use this concept to diversify your team’s revenue streams for better business returns.

6. The Feynman technique: the best way to learn anything.

  • Read full article here.
  • Written by Shane Parrish. 
  • Contributor: Isabel Silvis.

Shane Parrish gets it: if you’re not learning, you’re standing still. It’s a simple statement that rings particularly true when it comes to the web. New frameworks and techniques continue to crop up daily, and keeping up with trends can be time-consuming.

This article teaches you a formula by Nobel-prize winning physicist Richard Feynman for how to learn faster, and with greater depth. It’s not magic, but process. Try these tips to uncover the unknowns within your own understanding.

7. This UX strategy guide helps designers make better decisions.

  • Read the full article here.
  • Written by Alex Souza .  
  • Contributor: John Broadfoot.

Taking a step back from design and thinking about the problem at hand can be notoriously difficult. The itch to jump into Sketch and start working on a mock-up might be strong, but deeper understanding is critical.

Alex Souza has taken the Lean UX Canvas and the UX Strategy Blueprint to form a new way to refine ideas, analyse risk, and make decisions so designers can solve bigger problems, better.

8. Why your success depends on the strength of your relationships.

  • Read the full article here.
  • Written by Gustavo Razzetti . 
  • Contributor: Mark Davis.

Our lives aren’t experienced in isolation—so it’s no surprise that our relationships form who we’ve been in the past, who we are and will become. As a parent of a toddler, this article by Gustavo really hit home—as you see them grow and influenced by every person they meet. While positive relationships drive fulfillment, and satisfy our quota as social animals, the flipside can be just as impactful.

As Gustavo Razzetti argues, disconnection has the potential to derail your trajectory. Forming meaningful relationships in your personal or work life can be the difference that helps drive your successes. And to Gustavo’s point on ‘finding your partner in crime’, I’m already on my quest to raise a female super villain #terribletwos.