Keeping Step with The World of UX
In recent years, digital nomads, freelancers, and remote workers are becoming the modern workforce. Having managed to escape the rat-race that office life had shoved people into for decades, they are the ones redefining how people work. They conquered the ultimate freedom of living and working on their own terms. But with freedom come both responsibility and challenges.
Meet the Team of One
A designer’s work will hardly thrive in isolation. They want to stay relevant, keep step with the industry, and continually improve their work and the ways they work. Luckily, we live in a golden age of self-education.
Higher education is still an exceptional basis, but the rise of online platforms has brought easy access to comprehensive knowledge on the latest tools and methodologies. And a designer is not limited to learning about design. They can explore anything they need for a successful business, from accounting to soft skills.
Furthermore, knowledge is easily and happily shared by many nowadays. Facebook and Slack groups for designers create a great sense of community. Many people also share their experience in the form of blog posts, case studies, and podcasts.
Every corner of the internet offers a learning or a knowledge-sharing opportunity.
Away From Being Away
Trying out a new thing is mostly a trial and error process, and it’s nice to have some feedback from team members or peers. However, if you’re a team of one, it’s hard to find relevant opinions or feedback, and it can get one stuck. It’s good to come out into the world once in a while and share experiences with fellow designers.
Sometimes, it’s nice to meet all these real live people in flesh and blood, get together with other creatives, and exchange ideas and knowledge, receive or provide feedback, even start a collaboration. Co-working spaces can provide the feeling of a workday-like structure and an opportunity to connect with new people, usually backed up by a creative space and good coffee.
Cruising the World of UX Design
And there’s another excellent way to get away from the daily routine of the team of one. Organized digital nomad retreats or cruises are a rising trend. The fees get quite pricey, but they certainly get your back for a certain period.
You become a part of the group, and what’s important, they understand you’re not a student backpacker. You get comfortable accommodation and work conditions, and everything from paperwork, transportation, to walkaround tours arranged. You show up, live, work, and enjoy being part of a community for several months.
Then there’s a quick way - finding a meetup or a conference will cover the need to hear something new quickly, get up to date with the latest thing in the industry, and gather a few contacts. Both are usually very fast-paced and packed with information.
You have to work quickly to establish some meaningful connections and gather a few contacts.
Meet the Designers; Live, Work and Learn Together
For all these reasons the idea of UX Designers Camp was born, inspired by the US version, Epicurrence. We felt European designers needed something similar since traveling to the US is quite expensive. We wanted to create a community that would be connected by knowledge and shared experiences.
It’s based on a concept of an unconference, or it’s semi-structured. Participants are free to design their own experience that will unfold in the ways that will best suit them. In-depth workshops with senior UX designers, and carefully chosen places to live and co-work make this a unique (learning) experience.
One week of camp gives you enough time to acquire new knowledge and create deeper more meaningful connections, possibly start some collaborations, get to know a new place and meet locals, and do your work without the need to take the days off your vacation.
So, how great it would be never to have a fear of staying in touch with the industry? All these things connect UX professionals and bring something new and great to the players at the table. Being a team of one only works if while traveling the world, you can create a circle of people who are a support system for exchanging some great ideas and experiences. So make sure there’s always someone or something keeping you on your toes.