“I have been preparing for the Product Manager’s role for quite some time, but I always lack some aspects in the interview. I am interested in working in a design company, but I do not have basic knowledge of how to use design to make the user experience better. I have gone through Palarino’s product manager interview questions, which have helped me greatly improve my communication skills and answering ability. Still, I would like to know what are key design principles every product manager should know.”
Let’s Start With Basics!
As a product person, you know you are working at the interface of different core teams. The burden to stay flexible and yet the best in your field often clouds your vision to look out for unique possibilities in front of you. Before you devote your precious time to pondering how to deliver the best products; first understand your job profile. A company hires you to build valuable things users want to use. In that process, you must know a few juggling skills to effectively jump from one role and skills to another without compromising on deadlines and quality.
Product people are expected to naturally gravitate to one of the three holy trinity skills– Technology, Business, and Design. Some may be well versed in these skills, while others are good at many skills. And that’s completely OK.
If you are good at technology and have minimum relation to design, you may need to know a few basic design principles. Below is a summary of the five most helpful design principles that every product manager needs to know. A short snippet of design principles will help you brush up your design sense and deliver the products users need.
Five Design Principles Every PM must Know.
These principles include basic design know-how such as color, hierarchy, contrast, etc. Read on carefully!
Product design includes UX and UI designers, who perform the primary function of giving essence to any idea. It involves deciding the shape, color, size, font, and much more. And that’s pretty much the reason why they are mocked for filling in the colors. Clearly, that’s nonsense because filling colors makes a lot of difference in any product design. A design team requires a lot of effort and skills to relay the message and function the product will deliver.
Here’s how color choice impacts the product development:
Branding: A color strategy helps you uniquely tell your company’s story. It is more than just a logo and offers a true reflection of the value your company believes.
Accessibility: Around 8-9 percent of people suffer from color blindness, where red or green color blindness is the most common form. Here, allowing your users to choose the color themes can help the product become accessible to all.
These are only two examples of how color enhances users’ overall experience. Besides this, the color scheme of your product must align and satisfy the cultural differences to suit the needs of one specific area effectively.
Consider the design of a shampoo bottle. It includes information about composition, date of manufacture and expiry, brand logo, brand information, and a few other things. Did you ever notice how the content is arranged on the product’s label? If not, you must now know it falls under the category of product design and visual communication. Product companies follow a specific design pattern to arrange content according to relevance. Similarly, if you go on a website, the content is set in a hierarchical order where font size varies from place to place. That is another essential design principle–knowing which part holds more importance.
It is used to shed light on specific elements. For instance, the CTA buttons are always more precise and stand out on a web page. It simply lets the visitor know how to engage more comprehensively with the web page.
Have you come across any product or application that is good but pretty hideous to look at? Do you wonder how a legitimate website, despite having good products, cannot grow? The main reason for that infamous result is ignorance of proximity while designing. You can avoid this in your product design by grouping similar items together and allowing white space in your design. It makes user navigation easier and increases the chances of product growth. In simple words, present the dish in a presentable manner!
The last and most crucial principle in product design– Balance, stands true to its meaning and is used to bring all the different elements on a page in Balance with each other. It sounds easier but forms the most complex part of product design. It involves arranging, resizing, and a few other things of the elements.
The above five design principles are a must-know for every PM. Though your company does not expect you to produce the next iteration of upcoming product design, still, to become a product-market fit PM, you must ace up your design knowledge. It will help your teams get a better direction and understanding of what the product company expects. If you need more information regarding product management, feel free to contact us!