Just seven sleeps until Christmas. Where did 2019 go!?
This year I shared 40 stories on design, freelancing, entrepreneurship, and creativity. Not quite matching my one-article-per-week goal, but not bad either for a designer very busy with client work, plus a family with two rambunxious boys.
Professionally, I had a rewarding year working on many large and meaningful design projects from a handful of wonderful clients. I hope your business went well this year too.
Here’s a recap of some of the favourite pieces that sprang out of my head this year. Which was your favourite?
How to give and receive great design feedback
A comprehensive guide for designers and their clients to provide frustration-free feedback and create better design…
Is Responsive Design Dead?
It’s no longer a selling point when everyone is doing it. And it‘s not impressive if you’re doing a lazy job.
You’re probably calculating freelance rates all wrong — so follow this strategy instead
Even when you charge by the hour, you should be thinking in terms of value, not time. Follow this pricing strategy to…
Performance = Talent x Effort²
My life experience tells me hard work is more important than innate ability. My professional design experience…
How I earned $150K last year from freelance design
Let’s talk about earning more money as a freelancer. I go in-depth into everything I’ve learned from nearly two decades…
The pros and cons of Big Design Up Front — and what I do instead
Can a waterfall sprint? Can a greyhound slow down?
No, not “everyone is a designer”
Everyone can participate in design, but professional designers show their value as expert facilitators who drive the…
How to fend off bad client ideas
Trust, clear project goals, and objective feedback creates an environment that repels stupid suggestions.
Data-Driven Design is Killing Our Instincts
Valuing data over design instinct puts metrics over users
Why Designers Need to Be ‘Specialized Generalists’
Being ‘T-shaped’ will make you more effective and more valuable
The Best Designers Are Both Creators and Curators
How to find the perfect balance of new and old, according to your strengths
How I Grew My Freelance Business from $0 to Six Figures
Lessons learned from the ups and downs of building a design business for 18 years.
The Business Marketing Pyramid That’ll Make Freelance Clients Come to You
Use this 4-part system to generate qualified inbound leads and never have to chase freelance work again
Great stories from other authors in 2019
Some things that caught my attention this year and inspired me to improve my own business.
The Challenge of Defining Success as a Freelancer
What does it mean to do well in your career when you can’t be promoted?
Introducing Mercury OS
A speculative vision of the operating system, driven by humane design principles.
The Enigma of the Designer’s Calendar
Striking a balance between meetings and actual design work is an art to be perfected
The Case for Being a Multi-Hyphenate
Throughout history, and today, the most successful people are good at more than just one thing
How to Become the Best in the World at Something
With skill stacking, you don’t need to be at the top to be extraordinary
Why Don’t We Know How to Protect Our Time?
The cognitive errors that make us waste our most valuable resource
How to Build an Audience of 1000 True Fans in a Noisy World
Building an audience for your work is easier and harder than it’s ever been. It’s easier because we have the tools and…
7 Reasons Why Smart, Hardworking People Don’t Become Successful
For the longest time, I believed that if smart people worked hard and grew up in a reasonably nurturing environment…
A few articles to look forward to in 2020
I just finished up two pieces that I’m really proud of and will be published early next year. Keep your eye out for these:
- Design Is Compromise, Not Perfection
The more important your work, the more trade-offs you have to make. Expert designers make the most clever compromises.
Coming January 2020
- You’re an Artist, Not an Entrepreneur
Entrepreneurship may be sabotaging your ambitions if you’re a creative at heart. Explained: the conflicting mindsets of the Artist vs. Entrepreneur.
Coming January 2020
Have a happy holidays and a great new year.
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