If it’s important to know what makes a professional successful in his chosen field, it is equally important to understand what makes him fail. The word ‘fail’ does not refer only to financial failure. On the contrary, the obsessed pursuit of financial gains can make a web designer fall short in his commitment to his art. This article will explain how a designer can fail despite probably being a professional success.
1. The lure of the lucre: If you have given the nod to several projects just because it means more money, take a step back. You may have:
• Accepted work from an unethical client.
• Accepted more work than you can handle comfortably which means quality will necessarily take a back seat.
• Accepted work that does not interest you as a designer.
• Accepted work from a website whose content does not appeal to your sense of integrity.
When you are new, you cannot afford to be choosy about the work you get, but as you grow, you can pick the ones that appeal to your finances as well as to your principles.
2. Professional loner: You find you did not get to know of a new website launch that interested you, or a company that wanted good web designers on its payroll. This is probably because you have not bothered to foster and build some professional networks. These may be with web developers or other web-designers or simply colleagues whom you know through your workplace. Events, conferences and workshops make good places to meet other professional web designers. Regular interaction is the key.
3. Web designs are repetitive irrespective of the context of which they needed to be produced. Designs are not isolated projects; they need to work in tandem with the concept and content of the web site they are going to be featured in. You have to tailor your designs in accordance to the specifications of the website and not generate random designs which lack relevance to the website.
4. Ignorance of coding basics: You have only learnt to use quick fix software to integrate your designs into websites and do not know much XHTML or CSS basics. A strong base in coding helps a designer adapt his designs to different browsers or websites. As a designer, you must be able to display your skills in blending your design and especially in being to able to keep up with the technical jargon of the web building team.
5. Myopic designing techniques: Web designers tend to forget that their job is not restricted only to designing alone but also to strengthening accessibility to their site. The eventual aim of any web site is to draw in maximum viewership. This means designers have to learn to trouble-shoot website compatibility with old browsers, disabled capabilities etc in order to boost accessibility.
Your eventual focus should on ensuring that your work makes the internet a better place to work in.