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The Dash: Your astrology sign as a designer

This week's Dash includes your 2021 design astrology predictions thanks to Pablo Stanley.

This is the published edition of our weekly UX writer and UX writing newsletter, The Dash. Sign up to The Dash to have these updates sent straight to your inbox!

What’s in store for your work this year? Pablito Planeta, your design astrologist, has some interesting predictions. This week, we’ve got a great new blog on putting together a pitch portfolio, plenty of podcast episodes to tide you over until next time, plus some exciting events you won’t want to miss.

Creating a pitch portfolio. You can’t wait for the ideal job to find you. Sometimes, you have to make it yourself. Uzoma Ibekwe shares tips for advocating for a UX writing role where positions are scarce or don’t even exist yet. Some great pointers for being proactive in your job search and proving your unique value to new teams. 

Your 2021 design astrology predictions. What’s in store for you this year? Travel through the pixel galaxy to take a look into the future of your sign as a designer. Thanks to Pablo Stanley, the gradient cosmos is all yours.

Course preview: UX Writing for Technical Writers. Who should enroll in our new course? What will you learn? We’re so glad you asked. Explore the course preview to decide if it’s right for you. Sample the first three lessons now.

How to “steal like a designer” and boost creativity. Great ideas aren’t born out of thin air… they’re stolen. It’s not your fault—it’s science! It turns out humans can’t ideate without prior sensory input. This great read from Daria Vorontsova, product designer at Intercom, shows how you can tap into “stealing” to produce your next designs with ease.

How does your org align around customer empathy? If at all? This post from UserTesting reminds us to get at the heart of customer empathy by stepping into customers’ shoes.

16 best user research podcasts. Whether you’re a frequent listener or occasionally tune in, there’s a podcast for everyone. And User Interviews rounded up some of the best to help you level up your UX research knowledge and get inspired by leaders in design, research, and business. You’re welcome.

How to do customer research. First of all, what is it? Why is it important? What are the best methods? How can you measure success? You should absolutely keep reading this post. Thanks to Laura Luck for these helpful techniques to better understand your customers.

Creating, building, and nurturing relationships with stakeholders. How can you build effective relationships with cross-functional teams? That’s the age-old question, isn’t it? For starters, listen to this great episode of the Content Rookie podcast featuring Mario Ferrer. 

Design communication is a critical skill. Good designing = good communicating. Kazden Cattapan, product designer at Shopify, highlights how you can build trust by explaining your designs effectively and understanding the needs of your stakeholders. Great frameworks to follow, folks.

Process vs. practice at Dropbox. The pandemic has, for better or worse, afforded us the opportunity to rethink the way we work, and rethink it again. In this piece, Michelle Morrison chronicles how this sparked new processes vs. practices at Dropbox.

See you at Confab? What’re you doing May 5-7? Confab is coming to a computer near you. Join in the virtual content fun and hang with fellow word nerds—including us! Our very own Patrick Stafford will give a talk on content research and testing. Guaranteed to be a fabulous time.

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