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Why design for experience? Because designing isn’t the only thing that designers do

20/10/2017

Why design for experience? Because designing isn’t the only thing that designers do

Experience Design has become one of those annoying business terms that is grossly overused and widely misunderstood.

As luck would have it, I won the buzzword bingo jackpot with my job title. If I had a dollar for every time I’ve been asked what Experience Design is, I’d crack the Forbes list faster than Conor McGregor. And I’ll be the first to admit it’s difficult to explain what it is and why it’s valuable. So, let’s break it down.

What is Experience?

Experience is at the core of human existence. Our individual opinions and views of the world are shaped by events, incidents, occurrences and interactions we share with people, things, places, services, rules, work and anything else we encounter in the world around us. Without diving too deeply into existentialism, if we are not here to experience, why are we here at all?

And what a time it is to be here! We’ve never had so much access to knowledge, time and resources. Our world is changing at a cracking pace, accelerated by the digitisation of everything. Our interactions shape us, and we shape them. As a result, our expectations shift, and we look for new ways to satisfy our needs and desires. Intentionally or unintentionally, the outcome is our experience.

Experience is the new black when it comes to how we define ourselves. A quick scan of Instagram or Facebook is more likely to highlight trips to Bali or Barbados over the latest Louis Vuitton bag. We have become more engaged in doing stuff than having stuff, and when it comes to stuff, we demand more than the fancified features and basic benefits we’re handed - we want it our way, or we won’t buy it.

Read the full piece from Isobar Hong Kong's Head of Experience Design, Chirryl-Lee Ryan, on The Drum here.

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