Designers, we have a “Figmaism” problem by Artiom Dashinsky

Artiom Dashinsky discusses an important issue he sees emerging in the design community – an overemphasis on digital design tools at the expense of more impactful skills. While tools like Figma are certainly useful for designers, Artiom notes that companies evaluate designers based much more on their soft skills, collaboration abilities, and business acumen rather than just technical proficiency. 

He dives into research from top companies that shows “hard skills” often account for less than 25% of a designer’s total evaluation. Yet online, designers spend the vast majority of time discussing tools. Artiom proposes this stems from a need to stay comfortable as well as a lack of clarity on career growth. 

Most helpfully, he provides tangible suggestions for where designers can focus their energy instead, such as presenting work, mentoring others, improving processes, and understanding business needs. The takeaway is that while tools are part of the job, designers will serve themselves and their employers best by broadening their skills into areas with more direct impact on business outcomes.