A Day in the Life of UX Designer Sabrine Tizaoui and What It’s Like to Work Remotely

by Sheena Lyonnais

posted on 01-11-2018

Sabrine Tizaoui is a user experience and user interface designer based out of Montpellier in the South of France. She enjoys working with clients remotely and writing about design on her personal blog, UX/UI Talk.

In her own words, she walks us through a day in her life as a UX designer and shares the bounty of ways she continually seeks inspiration and play throughout her day:

“Every day as a UX designer is a different adventure with its own tasks and goals. I tend to focus on my two life values: flexibility and wellbeing, and revolve my work and decision-making around them.

I wake up around 6:30 a.m. Ever since I realized that the healthier the body feels, the better the creative output is, I make sure my daily morning routine is all about body and mind: exercise, stretching, five minutes of meditation and a healthy breakfast. Early mornings are also when my brain is most receptive, so I like to kick my days off with a TED Talk or an interesting podcast. My current go-to podcast is The Accidental Creative by Todd Henry. This sets the tone for the day and gives me a big boost of physical and mental energy.

I usually start work around 9 a.m. I keep a list on my desk with my week’s main goal, put first in bold, then followed by the small steps leading to it, organized by priority. I keep my list simple and flexible to leave room for creativity. After a quick check, I dive straight into the first urgent step. At this time of the day, my ideas flow most abundantly and I am highly focused, so I try to make the most out of this state of mind by getting a big chunk of the day’s work done. Today, I am adding the final touches to the high-fidelity interactive prototypes I have created for a usability testing.

I schedule my meetings, when I can, around 11 a.m. Today, I am exchanging with the developer team to make sure the newly designed features will actually work from a technical perspective. Part of my job is to regularly interact with stakeholders and team members to ensure that the user’s needs, the business’ needs, and the technical requirements are all met. If no meetings are planned, I play ukulele, daydream, have a cup of tea, and then get back to work.

I usually have my lunch break around 1 p.m. After feeding the body, I like to feed the brain as well. I spend most of my early afternoons browsing on Twitter, Medium, and other platforms and favourite blogs on the hunt for interesting ideas and articles to read. If something grabs my attention, I take notes, so I can come back to it later in the day. I also spend a lot of time checking other UX/UI designers’ works for inspiration, especially the use cases. Keeping up with what’s new out there and gathering tips and tricks on a daily basis really helps broadening my own approaches to solving a specific user problem.

Later in the afternoon, I often bike to my favorite coffee shop to get some more work done. Today, I am scheduling usability testing sessions with clients. I am also preparing interview documents for the new prototypes. The focus of these interviews will be ensuring that the app’s new features clearly communicate their purposes and that the real user flow matches the one I have laid out for the product.

Since I work remotely for the moment, I tend to go often on Slack groups by the end of the day to connect with other UX professionals around the world. We talk about our work processes, tools and best practices. It’s also a good place to share design works for suggestions and feedback.

Three important questions to ask yourself at the end of each day

Finally, I take a few minutes to review what I have accomplished in the day. I must answer, on paper, these three questions:

-What did I do today?

-What am I going to do tomorrow?

-Is everything going on the right track for the desired outcome?

If not, then some changes need to be made as soon as possible. Ending my work with these questions helps me get an easier start the next morning.

I often finish work around 7 p.m. and head off to meet friends for dinner and drinks. I try to make it back home around 10 p.m. to work on personal projects. This is the time of the day when I am open to random inspiration. It can be anything from drawing, reading, or learning something new online. Right now, I am taking an online course about Generative Art on Skillshare: using programming to generate art patterns. This can also be a good time to catch up with some front-end coding or just review the notes I’ve taken earlier in the day.

Then, off to bed!”

Response has been lightly edited and condensed.

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Topics: Creativity, Design

Products: Creative Cloud