February 13, 2023

Save everything!

One of the best pieces of advice I could give my peers is to save their work regularly. This includes every report, every design, every asset, every deliverable, everything!

(As long as you own the IP, of course)

Today, so much of our work is hosted in the cloud. Figma files and Miro boards are great for versioning and live collaboration, yet those artefacts can become incredibly hard to find after a while.

You may also lose them completely if you switch teams or move to another organisation. Without access to what you've contributed to in the past, you will likely need to recreate work unnecessarily in the future.

Downloading designs, exporting assets and archiving deliverables is an unglamorous task. Even so, the frustration and effort you can save yourself are well worth the time investment. Adapting an existing slide, report or mock-up can save you countless hours rather than starting from scratch.

Designers may also regret not having a neatly organised back catalogue of their work when the time comes to update their portfolios. Trust me, there is no worse feeling than to be left with a handful of low-fidelity illustrations to showcase otherwise great work.

Worse, your ability to reflect on past experiences and learn from them becomes limited by what you can accurately remember.

Most people prefer to learn by doing. Yet, different studies have shown that we learn more when we couple our experiences with times of reflection. Research participants who chose to reflect outperformed others who opted for additional experience.

So... what does your file system look like? Will you be well-equipped for your next trip down memory lane?

Screenshot of a file explorer window, illustrating how I organise my working files
Screenshot of a file explorer window, illustrating how I organise my working files