📬 Substack, UX, and Designpreneurship
I had a mini identity crisis a few weeks ago and had to do some thinking 🍷😂
I have a couple of major updates this week.
🛸 The other part of my life
Some of you may know that besides my career in UX design, I also love entrepreneurship (perhaps even more than UX design itself 🙊). Working on side hustles and trying to build a business has been a major part of my life for a very long time. I made my very first attempt to make money when I was 7 years old. Every weekend, I was taking a bus to the central train station (20-ish minutes ride), setting up my “booth” out of the cardboard boxes, and selling the toys that I’d overgrown.
Sometimes I have flashbacks to that time. I can recall my “inventory” and making price tags using stencils, customers’ faces, and grandmas selling woollen socks and sunflower seeds next to me. But most importantly, I remember how this “side hustle” made me feel — like a grown-up. It was magical 🦸♂️
Until one day, one customer snitched on me and told my school I was doing business, which was a no-go zone in the USSR. I was publicly shamed by my teacher, and I clearly remember how I was standing and listening to her yelling in front of my classmates. I genuinely did not understand what her problem was, and I didn’t think I did something wrong 😆. To be honest, I felt proud of myself 👏
Since then, I have tried launching many businesses. Some were somewhat successful, but most of them failed. I’ve learned a lot, but not enough 😎
Trying to build a business takes a lot of time and effort. It’s a sacrifice. So, what’s been my motivation?
I have a dream that one day I will have the freedom to choose what I work on, where I work from, and how much time I work on it.
My goal is to build (and/or acquire) multiple lifestyle businesses to provide several diverse income streams providing enough to live comfortably. I am not interested in building bullion-dollar scale startups with venture funding and many employees. I am more of a fan of the independent solopreneurship self-funded model. I’m going to be sharing more of that part of my life.
💌 My Newsletter
🧭 UX Career
I’ve been writing (mostly) about UX career advice for a few years now, and I enjoy it. I am still an active practitioner who is learning and who wants to help fellow designers who are earlier in their careers. So, I’ll keep doing this.
Starting and growing a career in UX
Collaborating with others
Getting hired in UX
UX resources and tools
Also, I’ve been interviewing Design leaders and other tech professionals on topics of portfolios, resumes, job search advice, and tips on being a good project partner - all with the goal of helping UX and Product designers get a job, and become better professionals and human beings. Listen/watch →
I’m starting to publish more about my entrepreneurial journey. More of a real journal documenting this part of my life. I’ve realized I try a lot and learn a lot, and writing it all down should help me remember my lessons learned better.
The main focus is online businesses for entrepreneurs who can’t code 🤖 and what “designpreneurs” can do to diversify their income and reduce dependency on their day job.
Coming up with business ideas
Identifying and interviewing customers
Testing ideas and assumptions
Experimenting with methods and tools
Sharing progress reports on my projects
Basically, I am always working on some side projects, and I will be documenting what I am doing, why, and what the results are. As usual, this is a work-in-progress section and I will definitely be experimenting with the content.
For the last few months, I’ve been using a newsletter platform called Ghost. It’s more powerful, flexible, and fair. However, I made a decision to move back to substack as my main tool to write content and send newsletters. The important benefit of substack for me is that they support multi-channel newsletters.
So, from now on, you will be receiving emails from this address: email@example.com. Add it to the address book, so my emails don’t end up in Spam or Promotions folders.
As a subscriber, you can now choose which of my “channels” you want to be subscribed to. Customize your settings →
Free vs Paid
Most of my content published within the last 18 months is free to access. Access to the full archive and my UX Career Resource Library is paid. If you want to support my work, you can do it by upgrading to paid. If you have an active paid membership, it will keep going unchanged. Choose a subscription plan →
That’s all for the updates this week. Reply back if you have any questions, comments, or concerns.
Till next time! 🤙