Unnecessary Qualifiers

posted on

Present without apologies Most people struggle with confidence at times, especially in the workplace and I’m no exception. I often find myself presenting my design work and my opinions with a variety of qualifiers, as if pointing out my perceived flaws before someone else can will negate them. This is just as much a reminder… keep reading

Ditch the elevator pitch

posted on

If there’s true interest, there’s no rush — take your time to listen first and explain second There’s no shortage of lore about the importance of the elevator pitch. There’s the 1850s version, in which inventor Elisha Otis’s dramatic demonstration of his innovation — a safety brake that keeps elevators from falling during a cable failure — set a new bar for… keep reading

New in Basecamp 3: Message Types

posted on

One of the best ways to improve a product is to look at hacks and workarounds your customers have come up with, understand the why behind the how, and then figure out how to turn those little innovations into full-blown features so everyone can benefit from them. That’s exactly what we’ve done with a brand… keep reading

Are you making customers too happy?

posted on

I graduated from the University of Illinois (Champaign-Urbana). Marc Andreessen was an alum. That’s where he created the Mosaic web browser which in turn led to creating Netscape. As you can imagine, I had a loyalty to Netscape coming out of school. But everyone knows how that story turns out. Microsoft won. We were stuck… keep reading

The Unnecessary Fragmentation of Design Jobs

posted on

Photo by Sanwal Deen Hey there, tech designer person. Have you noticed the increasing number of vague specializations we’ve invented for ourselves? Here are a few I grabbed from a job board 10 minutes ago. UX DesignerUX/UI DesignerUI DesignerGraphic Designer (UX & UI focus)Visual DesignerDigital DesignerProduct DesignerPresentation DesignerFront End DesignerWeb Designer Bleh. What’s the difference between UX… keep reading

Jungle Jim, I Presume?

posted on

Illustration by Nate Otto In an industry known for selling commodities at low margins, Jungle Jim’s International Market in suburban Cincinnati, Ohio is something else entirely. It’s a super-sized grocery store that’s also a tourist attraction with animatronic characters, a dedicated events center, and a working monorail. At the center of this unexpected food empire is… keep reading

Planning is Guessing

posted on

A plan is simply a guess you wrote down Busting your ass planning something important? Feel like you can’t proceed until you have a bulletproof plan in place? Replace “plan” with “guess” and take it easy. That’s all plans really are anyway: guesses. So next time you’re working on a business plan, call it a business… keep reading

Dare to be remarkable? You need to piss some people off

posted on

Art from Kuma’s Corner Since taking over Highrise in 2014, we’ve heard a lot of feedback. A lot. It was pent up. Highrise launched in 2007. There was a mostly aesthetic redesign in 2011 and then very little development afterwards. That was the reason to spin it off as its own company — so it could get the… keep reading

A static business is a healthy business

posted on

Is that the sun? No, it’s our business. Read on… Aim for many nondescript dots, not a few obvious ones Last year I wrote an article suggesting that you shouldn’t let any one (or small group) of customers overpay you. If you have a small handful of customers paying you significantly more than most of your customers,… keep reading

There’s such a thing as “too helpful”

posted on

Not too long ago Jason Fried wrote about his experience shopping at Apple Stores, in which he described the common occurrence of walking into a store and being immediately set upon by a too helpful Apple rep (the “bouncer”). In trying to be as attentive, helpful, and friendly AS HUMANLY POSSIBLE, this bouncer ended up… keep reading