Delia Rusu writes for uxmatters.com about why you don't need a title to be a UX professional. While some of her examples are tied to her profession as a technical writer, there are some useful points for anyone trying to prioritise the user experience within their work.
In many ways, Steve Krug's call-to-arms for usability testing - "it's not Rocket Surgery" - is essentially all you need to keep in mind. But I liked Delia's self reflection which prompted me to do the same.
For me, I think having a teaching background helps. I was trained to reflect on my work, to appraise how well something went, and to look at my actions when things went wrong rather than blaming the user (in my case, the school kids). And though I've long left school teaching behind, these principles have stayed with me.
I instinctively have empathy with recipients of my training, visitors to my website, readers of my communications. And I want to know how effective my work has been. I want to measure and improve next time. Or at least not keep repeating ineffective things over and over...
While most of us probably don't want to be UX professionals, I think we should all aspire to have UX techniques within our skills set. And this article has some worthwhile suggestions to develop ourselves in this direction.
You Don’t Need a Title to Be a UX Professional - article by Delia Rusu for uxmatters.com