Tarun Kohli

7 Simple Principles for Creating Better Designs

After countless tiring discussions, intense debates, exchange of verbal volleys and people yelling things in design standups like –

  • Huh…Whatya mean by the button should be smaller?
  • Have you heard of the word? hmm..whatyamacall it – hmm… consistency!
  • Step away from the design please…
  • What on the earth is wrong with using Lorem Ipsum…I love those profound Latin words

I exaggerate but our design standups highlighted the difference in our group’s design philosophies and what we valued. It’s not that designs were bad but they weren’t following our core design principles.

What led to a more frustrating experience was that the feedback sometimes even didn’t highlight the context and someone would blurt, “It just doesn’t feel right”.

Someone would ask – “What do you mean that it doesn’t feel right?”

Followed by silence, scratching of one’s beard, intense gazing at the ceiling and then silent shrugging of the shoulders.

They knew one of the things was wrong with the design in discussion – lack of consistency or complexity or any such thing but they weren’t able to verbalize it well.

It was turning out to be a big problem – how do you lead effective design feedback standups without having a common language?

That led to codification of our design principles to create a shared understanding of our design approach and what we value as a team. These principles enable us to have a common design philosophy and approach. It also facilitates in having meaningful conversations and giving each other valuable feedback about design.

Not that our intense discussions have subsided but they have become more meaningful now 🙂

Here are our design principles –


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