Here’s what we learned / thought was cool at the recent Denver Startup Week, courtesy of our development team (but applied to all of us).
Don’t be Passive
Learning shouldn’t be relegated to after work, on the weekends (or let’s face it, never). Work it into your daily schedule and just start making things, knowing at first they’ll be unimpressive or even awful. We might have different learning styles, but one thing is true of all learning: you’ve got to try it for yourself.
We Can’t Actually Multitask
How long is the to-do list for today? How many projects are marked urgent? Of the in-progress projects, how many can you actually get done today? Regardless of the workflow methodology, it’s important to allow time and energy for review and a closed feedback loop — before the end user or client sees the work. Stop trying to clear out the backlog, and only focus on what can be done correctly and completely in any given day.
Follow Around Real Users
You can’t really see how your deliverable will perform unless it’s in front of real users, empowered to give real-time feedback. Using the scientific method (hypothesis, test, conclusion), and by observing users instead of asking them how they like or don’t like it, you’ll get the best feedback for real-world solutions.
As mobile phones reach more remote parts of the world and continue to be the main way we connect to each other, what happens when there’s no internet and no cell signal? By thinking “offline first,” you’ll ensure that users can continue to operate like normal even without the invisible tether we’re so used to in daily life.