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At Sword & Sharpie, I believe that user experience is about more than wireframes and pixels, fonts and layouts, personas and one-way mirrors. All of those things are important, beautiful, wonderful things. But how well you can craft a user interface or customer experience doesn’t matter if you can’t get anyone to build it.

I believe excellence at soft skills trumps brilliance at hard skills 90% of the time. Soft skills are really hard, because how do you know if you’re any good at them? By definition, they are hard to define and measure. And yet, I argue they’re more important.

Designers choose this profession because they want to make the world a better place. How much impact you can have to improve lives depends directly on how well you can influence, collaborate with, and learn from those around you. How much time do we spend working on those parts of our jobs, rather than getting better at the technical?

There are many blogs out there dedicated to advancing our field technically, and frankly, I’m not worried about that. You’ll figure it out. You’ll iterate your way to an awesome design. What so many designers seem to struggle with is the part after that—everything between designing and the user signing up, and beyond. I think as a field we can do better.

Sword & Sharpie is here to inspire you to define your job as something bigger and broader. To make your mission something larger. To believe more in the people around you, and to enjoy working with them more.

And most of all, I hope to inspire you to get more shit done, get better software out there, and make a bigger difference in the world. If you’re with me, I’d love to consider you a regular reader.

I’ll be sharing tips on presenting, productivity, software process, personal development, writing, collaboration, lean, agile, and other topics to sharpen your saw. There will also be expert interviews, how-to articles, and more.

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