The best UX training builds a long-term UX mindset

Ward Andrews
By Ward Andrews
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There’s one thing above all that you need to get out of a great UX training program - the right UX mindset.

User experience isn’t rocket science, but it does require a shift in thinking. You need three things to be a great design leader. First, you need to be well-versed in the 12 Competencies of UX Design. Second, you need to know how to balance your technical skills with your soft skills. And third, you need to cultivate a breadth of knowledge about a lot of UX design concepts while developing deep expertise in a few core disciplines.

No matter where your organization sits on the UX Maturity Scale, there's always room for improvement. But it can be frustrating trying to find the right UX training to address your biggest weaknesses.

It's difficult to choose among the many UX certification and training programs out there. Free resources are often limited to surface-level how-to guides. Paid options can stretch budgets, especially for solo designers or organizations that are still not convinced of the ROI of UX.

Through a series of blog posts, we’ll be covering many different aspects of UX training. But there are four key elements that the best UX training programs all seem to have. These are the keys to look for in choosing a program that you can be confident will install the right UX mindset for long-term success.

The 4 Elements of a Great UX Training Program

We know you want to be a great design leader and to build your own talented and competent design team. These are the things to look for from any UX training or certification program that will help you do that.

1. Design Thinking Evangelism

Good UX design is not optional. It's critical to the success of your products and services. But if your company has never invested in good UX design practices, you're missing a lot of the tools you need to be successful.

The iterative process of design thinking gives you a way to tackle the problems you don't even know you have. It pushes you to challenge assumptions, take the time to understand users and create innovative solutions.

A great UX training program gives you a strong foundation in design thinking principles. It gives you the chance to practice those principles so they become second nature. It gives you the confidence to become an evangelist for design thinking in your day-to-day work.

2. Consistent Design Direction

One of the best ways to take your UX design work from good to great is to set a strong design direction and stick with it. Design systems allow your organization to establish that direction. They help create a consistent user experience by leveraging reusable components.

A great UX training program helps you understand how to create and manage a design system. It gives you tools to maintain the right balance of business objectives, user needs, and employee goals. And it helps you better manage projects and prioritize your resources all in service of creating a seamless user experience.

3. Design Mentorships

It’s one thing to learn what to do and how to think, and it’s another thing to put that thought into action. The best UX training programs involve some type of mentorship. Mentorships allow you to get feedback and critiques from experienced designers. They give you the chance to practice what you’ve learned under the guidance of someone who's been in your shoes.

Designers of all levels need feedback to grow, and they need to learn how to request and deliver that feedback. Mentorships give you practice in how to have those conversations. A good mentorship program teaches you how to accept constructive criticism, and helps you get rid of bad habits before they can take hold.

4. UX Audits and Design Reviews

A great product needs great execution all the way from the design to the code. That's why a great UX training program needs to ensure you’re using best practices.

You want mentors to engage with your practice. You want mentors who will review and audit your work to point out areas for improvement. You want mentors who will help you find the path to a product both you and your users will love.

Looking for a UX Training Program? We Can Help

Our senior design leaders have trained and mentored individuals and teams. We first establish a foundation by assessing where you are right now, then we focus on areas you want to improve. Finally, we build a custom curriculum and mentorship program around your needs.

Read more about our UX training and mentorship approach. Then start a conversation to see how we can work together to take your UX design skills to the next level.