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How to overcome impostor syndrome being a UI/UX designer

If you've thought that you don't deserve the job you have or your achievements are just a matter of luck, you're likely to have impostor syndrome. Unfortunately, it's a common issue in web design since this job implies lots of subjective sayings and criticism that don't help cure impostor syndrome.

What's impostor syndrome anyway?

Even though imposter syndrome isn't yet recognized in international classifications, the problem exists and is studied by psychologists. Today, specialists define impostor syndrome as a persistent condition that won't allow a person to recognize their achievements and connect their hard work with positive results. People with impostor syndrome usually repeat the same phrases:

"I'm a fraud."

"People soon will find out that I'm not competent."

"My achievements are results of luck."

As a rule, people suffering from impostor syndrome have low self-esteem and don't assess their competence adequately. As a result, they don't enjoy their well-deserved praise and devalue their professional achievements and skills.

Here are the common reasons for impostor syndrome

•           Lots of criticism and comparison with the others in childhood

•           Lack of praise and support

•           Too much credit in childhood leads to inadequate self-esteem in adulthood.

•           The discrepancy between achievement send feedback ("Why have you got an A instead of A+ in the test?")

•           Not allowing oneself to make mistakes

Typical indicators of impostor syndrome

Now let's review some typical "red flags" that help you go through a quick self-test.

•           You're afraid of failing, so you procrastinate before each new task or project.

•           You feel you deceive people, making them think you're a professional and a competent person.

•           You never connect your achievements with your hard work. Instead, you think you've been lucky this time.

•           You never accept compliments or appraisals from colleagues.

•           You would like to be better than others, but a gnawing feeling constantly tells you that you're not unique or better than your pers.

•           You're angry when someone criticizes your work and can't accept adequate feedback because deep inside, you realize you have talent and professional skills.

How to overcome your impostor syndrome: 5 tips

The most working approach to overcoming your impostor syndrome is to speak facts and highlight tangible achievements, not just give compliments.

1. Enhance your competencies

First things first, you need to assess your professional skills to figure out your top skills and find room for improvement. For example, mobile UI/UX design could be your strong suit, while web design skills might require significant improvement. Ask your team leader or a mentor to provide feedback or use a skills matrix to get a comprehensive overview.

2. Find a purpose

When you don't see a final goal you're working towards, you can't evaluate the things you've achieved so far. That's why a clear professional goal like getting a promotion or starting a mentorship can get you to realize your strong sides.

3. Allow yourself to make mistakes

When equilibrists learn to walk on the rope, they learn to fall first. This practice helps them accept failures and don't be afraid of falling. Think about life as walking on a rope. Consider mistakes as an opportunity to learn and become a better person. Also, it's important to distinguish your personal mistakes from mistakes made because of external factors you can't control.

4. Control your emotions

Think about an impostor inside you and don't allow it to control you. Whenever you start feeling like you're not worth anything, allow yourself to live through negative emotions like anger and disappointment. Keeping a journal and writing down your emotions helps you keep track of your emotional state, get to know yourself better, and get rid of your negative thoughts.

5. Change your mindset

Most people with impostor syndrome have a typical mindset of a constant achiever. It's important to realize that life isn't all about winning and getting praise. Once you learn to appreciate the life journey, not a final result, you'll get much relief.

Conflicts in teams: rules that will help to manage them

Different team members bring diverse perspectives and knowledge to our #codebridgeteam, improving problem-solving and performance. But sometimes, a difference can lead to conflict. And we know how to deal with it!

Let's get it straight first, why do the conflicts appear? The reason can be either objective and social-psychological or based on organizational-management factors. In most cases, the catalysts of conflict are always communicative conflict generators. It happens when one says what he/she thinks, and the other perceives it in his/her way. Among key conflict generators in relationships is non-acceptance of the behavioral moments, violation of ethics, and direct negative passages.

Who are usually the participants of conflict at the workplace? Undoubtedly, these are the primary opponents and the so-called supporting group (colleagues who can indirectly be involved in the conflict).

It is doubtful that the conflicting parties will not resolve their issue without involving a third party. As proven by practice, it is worth having a mediator to effectively manage and solve the conflict.

So, what can all conflict participants do to make the "way out safer"? The effective step-by-step plan for any person involved prescribes the following:

- determine your role

- if you are not a party to the conflict, listen to both sides

- try to understand the motives of the parties directly involved in a conflict

- reduce the degree of emotions (they usually increase the problem and distract from the actual subject of conflict)

- always keep in focus the actual subject of the conflict

It is essential also to keep in mind specific behavioral rules that may be applied during the conflict:

1. Resolving the conflict immediately means avoiding the temptation to ignore it and drive the situation deeper.

2. Be honest: if a problem arises, it must be exposed.

3. Practice straightforward communication - express thoughts and ideas.

4. Practice active listening – by applying paraphrasing, clarification, and the ability to ask questions.

5. Do not allow the conflict to become personal - explain that there should be no characters.

6. Focus on effective solutions - do not waste time and energy on things that cannot be changed.

7. Don't blame – encourage collaboration, feedback, and indirect criticism.

8. Do not tolerate conflict - no team members should know about possible problems. And primarily, no issue arises in social networks.

Hopefully, these approaches to identifying and resolving conflicts will help your teams to be more effective and keep the working relationships healthy and productive.

How to collaborate remotely if you're in the creative industry: 6 simple tips

After two years of remote work, some people consider it salvation, while others experience significant issues with keeping up with their teammates. If you're in the second team, it's time to change your relations with remote work. Consider our tips for remote collaboration in creative teams.

Set clear rules

Different people have different ideas of a quality result or a proper communication workflow. To avoid miscommunication, invest some time in creating guidelines and policies that describe collaboration rules and set working standards, like:

- A knowledge database with tutorials, videos, and other materials that help new team members quickly go through onboarding.

- A single database with workflow files and guides with all aspects of your workflows: project information, contacts of all team members, job descriptions, and so on.

- A communication strategy like rules for maintaining the work calendar, correspondence with clients, and conflict resolution.

Create communication channels

Most corporate messengers provide you with the opportunity to set up separate channels for different topics like work tasks, company updates, celebrations, and flood chats. Separate channels solve several goals:

- You can communicate transparently and keep everyone posted on the latest news.

- Separate chats are convenient and allow you to find the necessary information quickly.

- You don't need to distract the whole team whenever you need to clarify a question with another group of colleagues.

Communicate frequently

Keeping a golden middle between frequent and short conversations is essential for working remotely. For example, keep your daily standups limited in time and allocate no more than three minutes for each person. If you want to support an element of a casual, relaxed conversation, introduce an extra couple of minutes before the call to chat about non-related work.

Here's what you can do to keep your communication frequent and efficient:

- Don't spend time writing emails. Communicate on chats and messengers to get instant feedback.

- Encourage virtual coffee breaks and happy hours to keep up informal communication.

- Prefer video over audio to convey your non-verbal language and emotions.

Arrange virtual tours

Your colleagues may want to work from their homes, coworkings, coffee shops, parks, and other places they find comfortable. To step in their shoes and build empathy, arrange a virtual tour. Such a tour will help you understand your colleague's work context and consider their circumstances when you plan group meetings or mutual work. For example, working moms might need extra time in the morning to prepare their children for school, and the afternoon could be their most productive time.

Block all the distracting factors

Draw the bottom line between being aware of the leading news and constantly scrolling the feed on social media to absorb as much information as possible.

Indeed, it's hard to resist checking non-work-related web pages now and then. Time management methods like Pomodoro could help you balance work and rest without missing deadlines. Setting simple goals and deadlines every day also prevent you from procrastination. Imagine how satisfying it is to cross your tasks off the list at the end of the day!

Track the results

It's a myth that remote employees aren't as efficient as office workers. You can achieve the same or even better performance working remotely with the right metrics at hand.

However, it doesn't mean you have to micromanage your colleagues or install time trackers on their computers. Make commitments and set deadlines that'll help you see a final goal. Project management boards like Trello help you visualize all your tasks and avoid mess.

How to overcome impostor syndrome being a UI/UX designer

If you've thought that you don't deserve the job you have or your achievements are just a matter of luck, you're likely to have impostor syndrome. Unfortunately, it's a common issue in web design since this job implies lots of subjective sayings and criticism that don't help cure impostor syndrome.

What's impostor syndrome anyway?

Even though imposter syndrome isn't yet recognized in international classifications, the problem exists and is studied by psychologists. Today, specialists define impostor syndrome as a persistent condition that won't allow a person to recognize their achievements and connect their hard work with positive results. People with impostor syndrome usually repeat the same phrases:

"I'm a fraud."

"People soon will find out that I'm not competent."

"My achievements are results of luck."

As a rule, people suffering from impostor syndrome have low self-esteem and don't assess their competence adequately. As a result, they don't enjoy their well-deserved praise and devalue their professional achievements and skills.

Here are the common reasons for impostor syndrome

•           Lots of criticism and comparison with the others in childhood

•           Lack of praise and support

•           Too much credit in childhood leads to inadequate self-esteem in adulthood.

•           The discrepancy between achievement send feedback ("Why have you got an A instead of A+ in the test?")

•           Not allowing oneself to make mistakes

Typical indicators of impostor syndrome

Now let's review some typical "red flags" that help you go through a quick self-test.

•           You're afraid of failing, so you procrastinate before each new task or project.

•           You feel you deceive people, making them think you're a professional and a competent person.

•           You never connect your achievements with your hard work. Instead, you think you've been lucky this time.

•           You never accept compliments or appraisals from colleagues.

•           You would like to be better than others, but a gnawing feeling constantly tells you that you're not unique or better than your pers.

•           You're angry when someone criticizes your work and can't accept adequate feedback because deep inside, you realize you have talent and professional skills.

How to overcome your impostor syndrome: 5 tips

The most working approach to overcoming your impostor syndrome is to speak facts and highlight tangible achievements, not just give compliments.

1. Enhance your competencies

First things first, you need to assess your professional skills to figure out your top skills and find room for improvement. For example, mobile UI/UX design could be your strong suit, while web design skills might require significant improvement. Ask your team leader or a mentor to provide feedback or use a skills matrix to get a comprehensive overview.

2. Find a purpose

When you don't see a final goal you're working towards, you can't evaluate the things you've achieved so far. That's why a clear professional goal like getting a promotion or starting a mentorship can get you to realize your strong sides.

3. Allow yourself to make mistakes

When equilibrists learn to walk on the rope, they learn to fall first. This practice helps them accept failures and don't be afraid of falling. Think about life as walking on a rope. Consider mistakes as an opportunity to learn and become a better person. Also, it's important to distinguish your personal mistakes from mistakes made because of external factors you can't control.

4. Control your emotions

Think about an impostor inside you and don't allow it to control you. Whenever you start feeling like you're not worth anything, allow yourself to live through negative emotions like anger and disappointment. Keeping a journal and writing down your emotions helps you keep track of your emotional state, get to know yourself better, and get rid of your negative thoughts.

5. Change your mindset

Most people with impostor syndrome have a typical mindset of a constant achiever. It's important to realize that life isn't all about winning and getting praise. Once you learn to appreciate the life journey, not a final result, you'll get much relief.

Offshore mobile app development: not-so-obvious benefits you didn't know about

From Microsoft and Google to Uber and smaller tech startups, they all have been practicing or considering offshore mobile app development. If you can't make up your mind about this type of software development, you're not alone. Many businesses have doubts in the beginning, but most of them stay satisfied with their choice. In this blog, we'll spill all the details about offshore mobile app development: what it is, how it differs from nearshore and outsourced development, and its tangible business benefits. Let's dive in!

What is offshore mobile app development?

The concept of offshore app development is straightforward. It refers to moving software development operations to another country or a continent. That's how offshoring differs from nearshoring: in the first case, companies work with software developers from different time zones and countries, while nearshoring rarely involves specialists from another time zone.

A different time zone might sound like a disaster, but it's not a critical problem; in some cases, it could be a competitive advantage. If you're located in the US and your support team is in Ukraine, that means you can embrace more time zones and provide help for international clients.

Next, you might wonder about the difference between outsourcing and offshoring since both are buzzwords in the tech domain. Let's clarify: outsourcing means hiring contractors from other countries to complete a specific feature or a project, while offshoring means moving business operations overseas. So basically, you hire people abroad to complement your in-house team.

Offshore mobile app development is trendy due to its cost efficiency, flexibility in finding specific talents, and more. Below, you'll discover the benefits of offshore app development for your business.

Benefits of offshore app development

You can't go wrong with offshore app development if you implement Agile management and timely communication. By intelligent management of a remote offshore development team, you can reap the following benefits:

1. Access to a vast talent pool

Some projects require specialists with specific expertise and skills. But what if you can't find experienced Python developers or Data Scientists in your area? Go for offshore app development instead! In this case, the world is your oyster. You can expand your talent search and select professionals that can contribute to your project with their expertise and pass on the knowledge further.

2. Cost efficiency

It's no surprise that certain countries have lower software development rates while maintaining an excellent quality of services, diligence, and communication. If you live in the USA, Australia, Great Britain, or an EU country, offshore app development could be a lifesaver for cost optimization. For example, Codebridge offers rates from $22 to $30 per hour, which is 4-5 times cheaper than in Northern America.

Low development rates don't necessarily mean the low quality of code you get. Because factors like the cost of living influence the rates of offshore app developers, they can play into your hand and help you improve app development costs.

3. Team scalability

It takes time and money to hire in-house employees, onboard them, provide necessary training, and constantly develop them. Moreover, dismissing an employee also involves compliance with local regulations and laws.

With an offshore team, contract work makes hiring and firing easier. An offshore team can take over subsidiary management, cost control, accommodation, insurance, and more. They're in control of hiring, firing, project management, and control of the final product quality.

4. Lack of personal issues

The in-house team has shortcomings like the need to invest in their professional development, team building, personal well-being, and so on. With offshore development, you can talk business. As a rule, offshore teams handle many energy-draining tasks like project management, interpersonal communication, conflict management, etc.

5. Time for your projects

Offshore app development helps you focus on high-level business tasks and strategies instead of managing projects and teams. Since you don't have to worry about organizational moments like social benefits packages, employee development, or search for a viable technical solution, you can concentrate on matters the most.

In conclusion

Indeed, offshore app development isn't a silver bullet. Risks like poor communication and failure to embrace remote team management are always present. Luckily, you can prevent pitiful situations with a proactive approach to selecting a perfect offshore mobile app development company. Consider these tips:

Work with trusted platforms like Clutch and Upwork that guarantee money refunds and provide reviews from real clients;

Do your research and check an offshore team on social media, Google, and other resources.

Conduct interviews to evaluate developers' hard and soft skills, involvement level, and business-oriented mindset.

Contact us for more details if you're interested in offshore mobile app development with a team of experts.

Design and Development: how to make your life easier?

While developing sites and applications, you often see that the design is drawn beautifully. Still, when it comes to implementation, the developer has to puzzle over how to bring the design into reality.

We sum up here key difficulties in working with design from the developer's view, as well as those tricks that make the life of a developer easier.

What frustrates the most?

Changing the order of components in the mobile version

We create an HTML skeleton and change it upon style properties. If there is one block in the design on the mobile version and another on the browser, both elements are in the HTML skeleton, and styles are hidden for different versions. For example, if in the browser there is a picture, and under it, there is a text, and in the mobile version it is a picture under the text, then this is not a problem; there are properties in the style that can change the order. But when the structure changes are too complicated, such as a picture appearing in the middle of the text, you need to devise a solution to build the ability to display it this way. Therefore, it would be great to avoid it incase it is not very critical for UX.

Different spacing between identical items in a list

Any sequential elements usually have the same properties (for example, menu items), and the style is typical for all to have less code. And when you see, for example, three buttons in a row, and between them, there is one indent of 20 pixels, and the second is30, then we spend time clarifying whether this is so or wrong.

The same is with the sizes of icons, which are also in the list; if 1-2 icons are knocked out in size, then you need to spend extra time processing them.

All design components are arranged according to logic and not scattered around the space

It's good when the finished design is somehow structured in columns or horizontally. When they are randomly scattered across the canvas, it seems that the design is still in progress. This makes it difficult to view the application logic, making it difficult for a Project manager and the customer to find the desired screen.

But in addition to all of the above, there is something that makes our life easier and brighter: the UI kit

This is the most beautiful and helpful thing a developer can take when bringing a design to life.

The block with inputs, buttons, and dropdowns helps a lot

If these elements are separately drawn in different states, regardless of size, it significantly reduces the development time and further testing.

Fonts and colors

It is handy to indicate all the headings of a specific style in the project and text in blocks of another. This will help when one person starts the design but his colleague has to replace him and finish the project. A block with all the project colors is not required, but it can be helpful. This will protect against the appearance of 2 or 3 shades of red, with validation errors, for example.

Based on our experience, we are sure that these points will help with the optimization of work among both developers and designers and reduce the time for clarification during development. And designers will not be pulled with clarifications and will continue to create beautiful things.