1. Picture a Happy African Family
2. Picture an Award-Winning Doctor
3. Picture an African in the Kitchen
4. Picture a Wealthy African
5. Picture Wealthy Africans at a Bar
That’s enough “picturing” for now. lol… We’ll come back to that.
Over the past few years, I’ve come to find my career more interesting with each passing day. From creating designs and marketing concepts that shape consumer behaviour to creating UI/UX designs for apps, websites, and enterprise software. A quick pause, just so I don’t sound like cognoscenti, I grow from daily feedback no matter how small — and I’m still open to learning new stuff.
Now, back to the story, in your mental picture of
1. Did you imagine a single dad/mum with his/her kids? Did you picture anyone with any kind of “disability”? How many children did you picture in the family? What was their gender? Please hold on, we’re getting somewhere.
2. What gender was the Dr.? Was he/she wearing a lab coat? Did you picture the office? Okay… we’re close
3. Who was in the kitchen? A man/boy woman/lady?
4. What was the African wearing? Need I ask the gender?
Before I forget….
5. The Africans at the bar…… of what gender were they?
Honestly, you are not wrong not to think of an Albino in 1, neither are you wrong not to picture someone in the family in a wheelchair. Yeah, I’d answer that, of course, I mean your question — I can hear it too. Why this post?
The above questions lay the premise for how I love to explain an important design topic; Inclusion.
As designers, we often let our mental image leave out specific groups because we have been conditioned to certain mental pictures. The idea is to make room for possible user groups that might be excluded from our thought process. We should never forget that inclusive design aims to satisfy the needs of the broad audience -considering human diversity and focusing on creating multiple ways for each and every person to have a feeling of belonging.
With an increased sense of belonging, we reach out to more users, with more users, we increase market share and pool of potential customers.
Moral of the Story: “Design for Inclusion”