Small talk + UX Designers = ? –

Small talk is not easy, but a necessity to survive events and meetups.

I’m not good at small talk. I would love to get better.

I have a certain aversion to ridicule and shame. Maybe you know this feeling 🙂 So, I came up with a plan.

So, I asked UX designers about their small talk questions, test them away from the keyboard (at least a little), and share the good ones with you.

So, I’ve come up with my own list of small talk questions. Some better, some worse. Some more and some less serious. I’m publishing them as inspiration, as an encouragement to talk… about this subject.

Please, share your opinion about it too! Which are okay? Which are not? I’ve numbered them to make it easier for you. Here is the list:

50 Small talk ideas a.k.a. conversation starters for UX designers

1. Have you listened to Working File?

2. Have you read Design is a job? What do you think of this book?

3. Do you use a tablet (like an iPad, not a Wacom tablet)? What for?

4. What notebook do you use and why did you choose that one?

5. What do you do in your spare time for fun?

6. When was the last time you wrote with a pen and paper?

7. Do you read ebooks or paper books?

8. What have you learned in the last year?

9. Mouse, trackpad, Wacom tablet, or a combination of them?

10. Have you convinced yourself to use apps in a web browser, or do you still prefer native software?

11. Do you listen to music while you work?

12. What’s something you’ve tried to learn without success?

13. What would you do if money didn’t exist?

14. What tools do you use at work?

15. What are the hardest parts of your job?

16. What do you think about Sketch? Does anyone even use Sketch anymore?

17. What has surprised you lately?

18. Have you seen Helvetica? Or Objectified or Urbanized? What do you think of them? Which of these movies did you like the most?

19. What’s your process?

20. How often do you explain to people what “user experience” is?

21. Have you ever had a chance to read Offscreen Magazine?

22. What’s something you are obsessed with?

23. Do you agree that everything is just a remix?

24. What do you do to destress?

25. What’s the best thing about your job as a designer?

26. How do you make backups?

27. Have you ever had a side project?

28. What kind of thing would you like to design in the future?

29. What single website about design do you visit every day?

30. What are you best at?

31. What’s your Design Kryptonite? (Hi, Jason from User Defenders!)

32. When was the last time you visited a library?

33. What is your favorite piece of technology that you own?

34. Do you design your own food?

35. How many projects are you involved in throughout a year?

36. What would make a project ideal for your portfolio?

37. Which not–so–big company with great design do you admire?

38. Have you ever tried to design something for an open source project?

39. When was the last time you thought, “Whoa, that’s clever!”?

40. What’s something that you find a lot people don’t know about design?

41. What are some of the biggest design challenges you’ve faced?

42. Do you feel like a part of design community? Locally or globally?

43. What personality traits make for a good designer?

44. What are the best criteria to measure success of design work?

45. Have you ever tried to design something different from what you design nowadays for a living?

46. What do you do to be the designer you want to be?

47. Are you a freelancer of some sort or an employee?

48. What do you think about Material Design?

49. Do you participate in contests?

50. Who would you like to attend a workshop by?

51. What do you usually use as a conversation starter in a UX event?

Leave a comment below 🙂

Author: Gregory Wolanski

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