I love Steve Jobs, I hate Steve Jobs



Maybe because it’s Friday, but today I feel really polemical. After a tough week full of commitments, I was looking forward to joining a meeting about “UX and Developers”.

After a shy warm-up related to the aim of the meeting and the covered topics, my hopes went completely apart when I saw the umpteenth slide with a banal definition of UX and the photo of Steve Jobs.

Are we serious here? Is it possible that designers do not have a better idea to say what the hell is UX without showing a pic of Steve Jobs?

More often I think that executive people, managers and colleagues are struggling to understand the real value of our job because ourselves, as designers, are not committed to effectively communicate our values, our ideas, and our way of working.

What’s the point in showing a Steve Jobs pic every time you want to explain why a company should invest on UX?


Do you reckon it’s because Apple was the first to create a specific UX department?

That and it’s an example of how much UX contributes to a product?

Either way, I feel your pain.


thank you @Piper_Wilson I really appreciate


To be honest, I bring up Apple when explaining what I do all the time.
It is easy for people to relate to. They know that Apple did SOMETHING right in the design of the first iPhone,
so, it is a decent way to offer even footing. Apple is KNOWN for selling design. For many people, the iOS is a much more intuitive and easy-to-learn OS. With that being said, it is a little uncreative if you have had time to actually put a presentation together. There are so many clever ways to explain design.

That is the heart of the argument, right there. All companies are made up of people with different backgrounds. Every person in the company knows the value of their own skillset, but assumes the value of all skillsets that they haven’t had direct experience with. That is why most organizations go through stages of UX maturity. It IS part of our job as UX designers to help these stages along, by catching everyone up to “the know” of why UX is crucial. It doesn’t happen overnight.

Steve Krug, amongst many other authors, I am sure, promotes the usability tests a chance to get everyone in the same (observation) room. Everyone cares about the product, right? It suddenly becomes clear that the product is meant to be used by real people, as opposed to theoretical ones, and that designing for those people is crucial. I think that is one of the truly clever ways of showing people what we do. It becomes much clearer to everyone what UX design is all about, after that.


Maybe my point was not well explained.
I don’t have anything against showing Apple pictures to promote and to sell UX to your stakeholders.

I mean, feel free to do it, as a designer I would put more effort in finding visual components to better explain the advantage of the UX Design processes according to the audience background.

Last Friday I felt frustrated by the awful combo of the slide with the face of Jobs and the sentence glued on it on it to explain "what’s the UX about"
The workshop was organized to present a company that is developing a framework to spread UX deliverables in a frictionless way to the DEV people. The audience was done by managers, engineers and designers.
The people were just bored and without focusing on the topics.
The quality of the presentation in terms of “what you guys can do to boost our process?” was just poor and not engaging.

My point is more simple: it’s not enough to show a Jobs’ pic on your slide with a catchphrase to grab the audience focus. Maybe, instead of using such recurring scheme it would be better to spend more time in analysing the audience background to leverage the most interesting topics for them.


Ah, yea, I misunderstood you a bit.

Taking the same old approach didn’t stir anyone. It wasn’t being explained in an engaging or novel way. Because people almost expected the analogy, people weren’t paying much attention.

I understand your frustration.

Do you have any takes on how you would have done it differently? How would you have grabbed the attention of the audience?


as I said, I try to know as much as I can about the audience background (eg responsibilities, roles, levels, etc).
Then I list some KPIs able to grab their attention (eg numbers, quantitative data etc). At this point, I have the blueprint of what I should tell to them to create empathy about the topics.

Personally, I found very interesting in terms of presentation tips, the paradox effect of showing figures, charts or headlines regarding a specific topic (for instance how users are browsing the web for a specific task as the e-commerce).


What paradox effect? Enlighten me :slight_smile:


It would be great to have such “enlighting power” :slight_smile:

you can apply the paradox effect to the design topics to dismantle a hypothesis.
You have several examples to start with.
One of the most used is the paradox about how expensive is to build and to maintain a UX Team within a start-up company

I did I poster out of this image:

p.s. just stumbled on this: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/why-apples-products-so-confusing-ignore-design-don-norman


I love the cartoon!