We introduce Ana Trandafir, a Bucharest-based designer with expertise in Information Architecture, Interaction Design, Interface Prototyping, and Usability Evaluation. Meet Ana as our instructor at UX/UI Design Instructor at Brainster Bootcamp.
We asked her a couple of questions before our upcoming UX/UI Design Bootcamp, where she’ll teach Brainster Students some tricks of the trade.
Brainster: Tell us your UX/UI design background story!
Ana: I have been creating experiences for other people since childhood. From being a professional dancer to being part of the school theatre play. I always try to make my own surprises for parents or friends. While growing up, I’ve engaged in activities like organizing events for students and being part of a startup. Creating products for people who want to live a healthier life.
All these experiences led me to the fact that I wanted to create something with and for people. I’m always trying to improve something around me.
Brainster: Tell us more about your job position at the moment and about the UX/UI projects you work on?
Ana: I have been a UX/UI Designer at BearingPoint in Romania for the last 2 years. I was lucky enough to work on projects from various industries, meant to digitize different processes, from training platforms to applications for managing products.
Currently, I am transitioning to another job as a UX/UI Designer at 2Checkout and I’m excited about the journey which is about to begin.
Brainster: How will your working experience help you in the new role of teaching UX/UI to students?
Ana: Until now, my experience helped me grow a user-centric mindset and a high-level overview that I’m inclined to have in any project. These ‘muscles’ can be used to create learning experiences for people. Just as someone would use those to design a product or an application.
I also think that working on various projects and in different teams is something that gives you a lot of perspective and adaptability for the challenges to come. Therefore I wish to share my experience and learnings with others, to learn from them as well, and to encourage them to be open to this kind of learning.
Find out more about our UX/UI Design Bootcamp.
Brainster: What makes a good UX/UI Designer? What makes a good UX/UI Design?
Ana: Simply, I think that a good UX/UI Designer wants his/her users to reach their goals and gives them the best possibility to do so. And that means knowing who the people are and understanding their needs and expectations.
If the end product is solving those needs in the best possible way, you can say that the UX/UI Design part was done right.
Of course, getting to that point requires many important traits and skills that one should be practising — empathy, problem-solving, communication, self-awareness…and many more.
Brainster: What will the students learn from your experience and your style of teaching?
Ana: I hope I will help them develop a user-centric mindset and the drive to solve the right problems in the best way possible.
Sharing good and bad examples can save up time. This can provide inspiration for improving solutions and coming up with new ideas. I’m looking forward to sharing my hands-on experience and learning together with them. Being there for them in finding the best solutions they need.
Brainster: What are the things that bothered you most in the teaching styles at university that you want to change now that you will be an instructor at the UX/UI Bootcamps?
Ana: The main problem that I’ve noticed is that the focus is not on the students. The teaching ways are not adapted to the times we are living. They are not flexible enough to cover the different ways in which the students learn.
There is another aspect that I want to mention. It is a sense of competition with others that at one point can become toxic. This can drive people away from collaboration and self-awareness.
In my lectures, I will place the students at the centre of their learning experience, understand their feedback, and adjust accordingly.
In the end, if we can design delightful and great products why not also create peak moments in a student’s educational experience?
Brainster: The students at the Bootcamps will be also learning from their peers. As a UX/UI designer how important in your opinion is teamwork?
Ana: I believe that UX/UI Designers are similar to translators, so teamwork is very important. They need to know how to listen and how to communicate with people and the team they are working with.
What links everything together is the capacity to collaborate, how to be open to suggestions based on different contexts of use, perspectives, or cultural differences. You should be self-aware to accept that sometimes your ideas might not be the best solutions.
Admissions are open for the Fall UX/UI Design Brainster Bootcamp. Join us and future-proof your career by learning from the best professionals around the globe.
Brainster: From your UX/UI experience and your learnings and projects, what do you think is your expertise in UX/UI design?
Ana: My experience is mostly related to Information Architecture, Interaction Design, Interface Prototyping, and Usability Evaluation.
Brainster: To be enrolled in our Bootcamps no UX/UI experience and knowledge are needed, but in your opinion what personal characteristics should one student own to have the potential to become a Great UX/UI Designer?
Ana: I believe that the most important traits that a UX/UI Designer should strive to grow. This is are quite general and would help anyone in their life, as well. It’s not a matter of ‘you have this or you don’t’. It’s a matter of working for what you want and trying to become better day by day.
Firstly, to go on this path, one should be a continuous learner and be able to easily and often say ‘I don’t know and go find the answer.
Afterwards, empathy plays a very important role to really listen to your users and self-awareness makes you aware of your biases to define problems that are real for your users.
Problem-solving and critical thinking go hand in hand and should be nurtured at any time because these are the main muscles for creating the right solutions for the right problems.
And last but not least, communication is key for people to be on the same page and end up with a great product.
Watch the recording of our webinar “UX Design in everyday life”, with Ana Trandafir, as a guest lecturer.