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Podcast

Colton Schweitzer & Ludovic Delmas - Become a Kickass UX Designer in 24 weeks

Highlights

Are you confident you are heading in the right direction for your transition into UX? If not, Colton and Ludovic share the tips they teach their students as they transition into a UX career path. Read the article below and listen to more of Colton and Ludovic’s great advice in the full episode!

💭 Get ahead quickly by setting your strategy early!

When making an efficient transition into UX, it is essential to think through the path you want to take. What will your learning path look like, what areas are you confident in and passionate about, how will you get the experience you need to create an impactful portfolio, and how will you be able to land a job at the company you want? Think it through, and build the plan with the end goal in mind to set you up for success!

🎯 Seek out the help you need to fill in your experience gaps!

Colton and Ludovic figured out how to help others fill their experience gaps through Kickass UX. You can work with them to fill in the gaps or find your own way, but without practical experience to share in your case studies, it will take a long time to land that job you want!

💡 Hiring managers need to know you understand the why!

Building an impactful portfolio includes diving deep into the “why” in your case studies. Show the hiring manager you are ready to hit the ground running with the experience you collected and shared in your case studies!

Become a Kickass UX Designer in 24 weeks

In episode 34 of The Product Design Podcast, Seth Coelen interviews Colton Schweitzer & Ludovic Delmas, Co-Founders of Kickass UX, an online training platform to help transition designers into a career in UX design. During their individual journeys into UX, they identified the need to help designers get the experience they need to move into UX design.

They decided to work together and create Kickass UX, an opportunity for designers to build their skillset and learn how to create research-based products for businesses and users. Seth, Colton & Ludovic discuss the varied paths into UX so you can determine what would work best for you!

Colton Schweitzer, Seth Coelen & Ludovic Delmas

How Ludovic & Colton got their start in UX

Ludovic went to business school to get his Master’s degree, but he knew he wanted a creative career. Returning to school was not an option when he came across UX, so he started his UX career path with DIY learning.

There was so much to learn on his own, but Ludovic repeatedly encountered the same problem with wanting to get a job in UX without prior experience or education. He created his own experience based on his passion for travel, completed two case studies to demonstrate he understood the methodology, and was able to land a job!

Colton originally went to college to become an aerospace engineer but changed course and graduated with a communications and political science degree. He realized he was not interested in pursuing a career in either of those areas, but while developing a board game, he came across the UX process and quickly realized that this could finally be the right path.

At the time, Colton did not want to go back to college but believed he needed a degree or certificate to get into the field, so he took a Bootcamp where he had a good experience. After finishing up the program, Colton found that the portfolio he created during the Bootcamp was not helping, so he added the creation of his board game to his case studies to demonstrate a real-world example and landed his first UX job!

Where Kickass UX came from

Ludovic and Colton met when they worked together at Smartsheet as Senior UX Designers. At that time, dozens of designers had been approaching Colton and Ludovic when they were trying to figure out how to get into UX themselves.

They decided to join forces and create Kickass UX to solve this significant problem they both experienced while starting their career path in UX. Kickass UX helps graphic and visual designers transition to UX with a community that provides mentorship and relevant experience to feed into case studies and portfolios so their students can land their first UX job!

Advice straight from the Co-Founders of Kickass UX!

Regardless if you get a formal education, participate in a Bootcamp or go the DIY route, it is essential to think about your path early on. Colton and Ludovic advised on thinking through and establishing your direction early to get that first UX job!

🧭 Figure out your direction in UX.

Once you understand the UX design process and methodologies, determine what areas you are the strongest in and where you are most passionate about. Rate your confidence and passion in information architecture and wireframing, prototyping, usability testing, and visual design. Although you may be working towards a generalist path initially, knowing where you are most confident and passionate will allow you to speak to this during the hiring process.

🤔 Project yourself into the future.

Think about the industries or companies you would like to work for and what specialty you may have a passion for when you begin your career in UX. By thinking this through early in your learning path, you can build the path that will set you up for success. You can then gain the right experience to build impactful case studies, which will grab the hiring manager's attention for the right role at the right company!

👀 Build impactful case studies that grab the right attention!

Focus on what you did and dig even deeper into why you did it. Let the "why" shape the story for your case study, so the hiring manager sees the reasoning behind what you did and your ability to think critically through the process. Make sure your case studies represent the type of work you want so the hiring manager can see you moving in that direction!

Ludovic Delmas
“It's all about the passion you have for the field. If UX is a calling, try it and see if it works out for you because the passion factor is huge.”

How to become a Kickass UX Designer

Colton and Ludovic pride themselves on helping designers transition into UX in a way that will best set them up for getting a job. They have taken everything they learned along their journeys into UX and created a program that can help. Here are some of the details Colton shared during our chat!

📌 Who is this program for?

Designers who want to build their skillsets and learn how to create research-based products for businesses and users. You may be a graphic, visual, web, or UI designer wanting to make a transition to UX.

What is the time commitment?

Kickass UX offers a 24-week, part-time program where you work directly with Colton and Ludovic.

🗓 What can I expect?

During the 24 weeks, you will follow the UX process two times, from research all the way through visual design and handoff. The first project takes 3.5-4 months, and the second project is six weeks since you will already understand the process. You can work on client-related or conceptual projects, but Colton and Ludovic will help you pick projects where there are actual business problems to solve. You will also receive 42+ hours of mentorship from Colton and Ludovic!

For more information, visit: https://www.kickassux.com/ux-ui-expert

Colton Schweitzer
“You don’t do something because you want to do it. You do it because that’s what the user is asking for, and that’s what needs to happen. There’s a problem, and you’re solving a problem for both a user and a business problem.”

Thank you so much, Colton & Ludovic!

This episode was jam-packed with excellent advice from the Co-Founders of Kickass UX. Colton and Ludovic are passionate about helping designers transition into UX, and it is incredible they are solving a problem they both encountered along their learning path. We are grateful they joined us on the show to share so many of the tips they teach their students.

Listen to the complete episode on The Product Design Podcast, which includes a deeper dive into the pros and cons of the different UX learning paths and the red flags to watch out for during your job search and hiring process. Follow Colton, Ludovic, and Kickass UX at the links below!

Where to find Colton & Ludovic

Colton:

Ludovic:

Kickass UX:

Additional mentioned links:

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