Skip to main content

Stop Using the Word Delight in Enterprise UX

Last week I participated in on UXPin’s Enterprise Summit (2017). On the last day there was a panel discussion by UX gurus on the state of enterprise UX with Jeff Veen of True Ventures, Lou Rosenfeld, and Marcin Treder of UXPin and Sunita Redd of UXPin. Over and over and over I kept hearing them use the word delight. So here’s what I want to say:




Dear Enterprise UX Gurus:

STOP! Please stop using the word “delight” in the context of enterprise UX. Just stop. I’m not the only one who wants this.

Delight is creating an emotional bond with a user through pleasurable experiences IN ORDER TO SELL THEM SOMETHING. This is wholly a consumer-side idea. Enterprise users have absolutely no choice in whether they get to use our product. It’s already been decided by management.

I’m up for a replacement. I personally say I want to give the user a good day, but more importantly I’m trying to make users more efficient. I’m trying to create human capacity for the company. Yeah, it’s still using people to get what the company wants out of them, but we aren’t trying to use psychology to trick them <eh hem> to convince them to buy something.

Do I want my user’s to have a pleasurable experience to the point of joy or rapture? Not really. What I want is for my tools to be so seamless in their task process to them that they don’t realize they’re working with them. It should feel like a hammer that has worn to fit to their hand, that has perfect balance and is almost effortless to use. It should feel satisfying, pleasing, effortless and trusted. Wrap that into one word.

Why does this bug me so much? Have you ever sat face to face with someone in business management who really doesn’t understand what you do and tried to talk to them about creating delightful experiences in a work tool with a straight face? It totally undermines what we’re trying to do for the business and feeds the stereotype that we’re just artistes trying to create a visual masterpiece out of the application project we’ve been assigned. We need to be able to speak with business in a language they understand and support our work in a more professional manner by talking about our craftsmanship.

Your immediate attention to this matter would sincerely be appreciated,
Jeanne Hallock



Comments

Popular posts from this blog

How UX Creates Business Value in the Enterprise

My company is a bottom-up UX company. We don’t have an upper UX manager, so we ourselves have to evangelize UX up to the top. In my group, I was the only UX designer for several years. And then there was two. As the lead I wanted to give our small but growing team some goals. As we talked, we realized that part of the problem we have is that we don’t know how to talk about ourselves to business in a language they understand. We wanted to create an elevator sales pitch for talking to executives. But really we hadn’t really ever listed out what UX can do for the business. I started by researching. We do know what we do from a business perspective, but how often do you sit down and really think about it or name it. I had most of them on my list, but have you ever thought part of your work limits company liability?  (Research is good.) So here is the statement that I came up with about how UX or good design creates business value as a starting place. Why good design? Because that is our…

Evaluating Your User's English-as-a-Second-Language Ability

At my company we've been dreaming of being able to localize our UIs since I started working there. While we have localized here and there for the most part it just doesn't happen. There simply aren't the resources or knowledge.Instead our employees in all branches are required to speak English. I have no idea how branches determine whether a person's ability is up to standard to be hired. I've never seen any guidelines for branch management to follow and admittedly our industry is one where you have to learn a lot of jargon, too. I imagine that may other global enterprises are the same way. This means that your users may struggle to understand your UI, especially those newly hired employees. So part of your user research should be pointed at determining at what level your users can understand written English. Here are guidelines you can use based on the European Framework of Reference for Languages. (See Chapter 9 for more information.) I assigned the reading leve…

Font Sizes for Dense Applications

Recently one of our UX designers floated the idea of going with a font size smaller than our standard because they needed the extra space. Being the avid researcher I am I went out and started hunting for information on best practice font size on the web or in applications. I mean it's been years. Someone must have done a study. I came across someone else on Stackflow asking the same question, but none of the answers were anything supported. Just unsupported tribal knowledge. To make a long story short I managed to find a great study, The Uncrowded Window of Object Recognition, done by Denis G Pellli and Katharine A. Tillman, 2008. It comes down to this. Letters in a word are an object and must be recognizable by the brain. As you reduce a font, you need to add a little space around the letters so they can be recognized. It really doesn't have anything to do with size. Here's an example in the standard Verdana/Helvetica at 13 pixels:
"You saved my life," he repli…