FAQ – Frequently asked questions

Hi, I get a lot of emails and LinkedIn DMs on the same topic. So I summarize the answers in here, as an attempt to offload a little bit of my email response time.

You can jump directly to main topics: collaborating with me, design and content of this site, questions about my social media content, questions about posting on my blog (mostly no), starting a career in UX, and fun personal questions about me.

If you wonder things about my site, content, blog, feel free to ask by email, twitter or linkedin and I might add the question to the FAQ.

Collaborating with me: consulting, writing, teaching, speaking, mentoring, podcasts, etc.

All of the above can be done in English or French.

Can you work on my project?

I’m currently working for Maltem, for a single client. I’m booked until the end of 2023. I won’t be able to work on your project. But, you can always reach out and describe your project (budget, deadline, what is expected, is it more user research, ux design, ui design?, required languages)  and I can see if I know some other designer who is available.

Can you speak at my event?

I’m always happy discussing speaking opportunities. I have a list of the main talks I gave in the past if you are curious about what I usually speak about. I’m always adapting the talks to the audience.

A few details:

  • If your event has an entry ticket, I expect my time to be compensated. The compensation can be discussed and I usually adapt my fee based on the type of event and entry price, if you want a brand new talk that I have to build from scratch or if I will talk about a topic I already have content about, and other perks, etc.
  • If your meetup is for a non profit organisation,  free and online, I will leverage the fee for a topic I’ve already content for.
  • I expect travel and hotel support from the conference. If you are a devfest or event affiliated with the GDG program, those can be covered by my GDE status.
  • It’s often complicated, especially for long travel to get organised in less than 3 months. So I tend to refuse last minute speaking requests, if I have to travel, if it’s not 3 months in advance. I am more flexible for remote events, as I don’t need to travel.
  • I don’t want to be a diversity token. Please don’t ask me to speak if I am going to be the only woman in the event. And if only white people will speak at your event.
  • I am in Luxembourg but I can travel. I am lucky enough to not need a visa for most countries, but if I might need one, we need to discuss this early enough to have time to organise
  • Slides license: I retain all the rights for my slides. I will share the slides with the audience on demand, usually either a PDF or on speakerdeck.
  • Video rights:  to be discussed for details, but I’m usually okay with recording remote talks and meetups and having the video published online. If you plan on selling the recording or putting recordings behind a paywall, we need to specifically talk about the conditions and compensation upfront so that we can have a copyright transfer contract.

If we align on the details above, please reach out via the contact form to tell me more about your event.

Can you teach in my school / university

I’m always happy to share my knowledge with students! I live in Luxembourg, so it’s easier to teach remotely if it’s over a couple of weeks, 1 hour a week. But I’m also open to coming to your school / university and a full day, or multiple days of master class.

Topics I usually teach:

  • Mobile strategy, UX and responsive design
  • An Introduction to UX and Product Design
  • Accessibility for designers
  • User Research tools and methods
  • A User Centered Process applied to Product design
  • Other topics can be discussed of course.

Please reach out via the contact form to tell me more

Can you facilitate a workshop/ train my team?

I’m always happy to teach new things to people. Just like teaching for schools and universities, remote workshops work best for me. But I’m open to coming for a face to face workshop, if it’s not too complicated from Luxembourg.

Topics I have workshops on at the moment.

  • Introduction to Cognitive biases 
  • Mobile strategy, UX and responsive design
  • An introduction of accessibility for designers, using design documentation
  • Information Architecture: how to build reusable components for your design systems
  • How to test the miss-usability of your products and services ( and how to prevent it)
  • Other topics can be discussed of course.

Please reach out via the contact form to talk about the details.

Can you write for my blog / magazine

I can, but it will depend on how much previous engagement  I currently have. Please reach out via the contact form to tell me exactly where the content will be published, and how you compensate your authors. Then we can see how we can best collaborate.

Can you speak in my podcast / my live video?

I’m a big fan of podcasts and live videos because I get to have fun conversations with other people in the industry. I’m usually trying to make time for those, but please don’t take it personally if you ask me at a time of my life where my plate is so full that I will have to refuse. Please reach out via the contact form to discuss the details and when we could schedule something.

Can you mentor me?

I do offer some mentoring sessions via 1-on-1.com

  • For mentoring regarding career advice and public speaking, use this form.
  • If you need some more technical answer, this falls under “consulting” and you need to use this form

Mentoring is usually a “help me help you” exchange, so I will need you to be specific about what you need help with. This is why there’s a few questions in this form, so that I can prepare this to make the most out of those 30 minutes.

If you are on a low budget, I have a blog with a lot of resources and content available for free: https://stephaniewalter.design/blog/. I also recommend you take a look at Debbie Levitt’s YouTube Channel. She has a lot of interesting content to help people transition into UX. And if you have a specific question, she does some Office Hours/Ask Me Anything streams, typically Tuesdays at 6:30pm Central Europe Time and you can a question via this link

Can I interview you  / ask you questions about your work?

I’m always happy to talk about my work. You can reach out and I’ll see what I can do. I’m nevertheless solicited a lot. So, I can’t promise to say yes. It will depend on how much time I currently have. If I don’t have time for individual request,  I published some content about my work, maybe you could take a look:

Can I pick your brain about something?

If it’s a project that you get paid for, it’s called consulting and you can check my 1to1 consulting sessions.

If you don’t make money with the project, you can always ask. If the question is generic enough and might be interesting for other people, I might answer you and publish the answer on the blog. So that other people can benefit from it. But I might not have the time. In this case, you could check on my blog, there is a lot of content there (and a search engine). If you don’t find what you are looking for on my blog, maybe you could try to look at some of those: 80+ UX blogs (with RSS feed) to follow.

Design and content of my site

Do you have a newsletter?

Yes, I publish a newsletter that will automatically send you the new articles published on the blog.  Every week, I share the “Pixels of the Week”, a selection of weekly tech and design links not to miss under the category “weekly useful links”.  you can subscribe here to get notified about new articles: https://stephaniewalter.design/subscribe-to-the-blog-updates/

Who writes and maintains this content (and social media)?

Well, it’s mostly a one woman operation for the daily things. I, Stéphanie, am the one writing the articles and sharing on social media.

Credits where due, I got help building this site:

  • A big part of the backend, and base for the front-end code of this site was created by Geoffrey Crofte. He still helps me with some new WordPress development when needed (and CSS debug when I’m stuck).
  • I collaborated with Myriam Jessier from Pragm for the copy of the homepage, the structure and she occasionally reviews some parts of some articles.
  • I created the whole design of the site and blog and all the illustrations. Except the mini me, on the left of my homepage, that was designed by Ank Von Anika. And the logo that was designed by Francis Chouquet.

How did you create the illustration on your site?

The 4 illustrations on the homepage and the plants you see everywhere were built using a paper and pen to Procreate to Illustrator (iPad then Desktop) process. I have a twitter thread with a few pictures here if you are curious.

The” little me” on the homepage was created by Ank Von Anika. She drew it based on a photo of me, using procreate.

Can I re-use your design?

No. I put a lot of time and effort into this design. I would appreciate it if you didn’t copy my identity. Thanks. (to be clear, this is my polite way to say “don’t commit copyright infringement by copying my design)

Can I re-use your content?

Short answer: No, not without my permission.

Long answer: the copy of the portfolio is written with the collaboration of Myriam Jessier at Pragm. No, you can’t re-use my content and copy. Even if you think it is nicely written. Even if English is not your native language (for the record, it’s not mine either)

All the content of the blog was written by me. Again, no, you can’t re-use my articles for your blog, site, slides or anything.

There are a few exceptions

  • You can quote a sentence or two from the blog if you want in your content (slides, blog, etc.) as long as you credit me as author.
  • I publish some PDF, docs and image resources. Some are published under creative common licence. For those, you can re-use them, as long as you don’t make a commercial usage (so, you don’t make money, in any sort of ways) and you credit me, as author. Check the licence individually as it might change for each content.

Can I re-use your code (HTML/CSS)?

Again, short answer: no. The HTML and CSS of this site was created with the collaboration of Geoffrey Crofte. If you are curious, he wrote about how he created my menu. You can get inspired if you want. Take a peek under the hood to see how the CSS is done. But don’t just copy a whole chunk of my code. This is not very ethical. Also, it would copy part of my design, which is, again, stealing my design.

You forgot to credit me / you credited the wrong person

I usually try to credit people when I use images they created on my blog and / or social media. If I forgot to credit you on my blog for something I use, or I credited the wrong person (sometimes if might happen, sorry about that), please reach out and I will correct this.

Questions about my social media content

A small introduction: I’m a human being. I know it’s shitty that I  even have to remind some of you about that. But seriously. The way some people interact with me on social media became very disrespectful over the years. Tanya DePass, in her article “how to interact with me on twitter”  says it better than I could ever, so I will quote her: “ I’m a person not a resource. So if you followed to be educated, or just learn. Tread lightly. I tired of people treating me as a teaching font with no feelings.”. So, yes, please remember, I am a person, not a robot sharing resources. Thanks.

Also, I mostly post and share content in English, but some posts might be in French (and very rarely German / Luxembourgish). Welcome to my “lost in translation” life.

How do you share so much content on social media on a daily basis?

I usually read a lot of articles during the weekend (or sometimes the evening). I don’t want to overwhelm people. This is why I schedule posts about the articles and tools I found interesting all week long. It means my social media presence is asynchronous. Just because you just saw me post something on Twitter or LinkedIn, it doesn’t mean I’m actually behind my computer and available to reply.

You published this resource X days ago, can you find it for me?

All the resources and articles I shared are manually added to a “Pixels of the week” article every Sunday. There is a good chance you will find that resource on my blog, via the “Weekly Curated Links” category. The search on my blog is also not that bad. If it doesn’t bring results, I recommend you try the following command in Google: site:https://stephaniewalter.design/ + your request. Something like: site:https://stephaniewalter.design/ e-commerce. This will help you find everything that I have written on any topic you may wish to read up on.

Why didn’t you answer my Twitter / LinkedIn DM?

I get a lot of requests from different channels. So, either it ended up in the filtered messages (and as a woman on the internetz I am afraid to open those). Or, there is a good chance I saw it my brain went “oh I need to answer that” and then, I forgot, and your message is now lost in the sea of other messages. This is why I prefer it when people send me an email. I can tag it, have reminders and all the things I need to not forget. So, if this was important, please reach out by email. There a higher chance I will get back to you.

Why didn’t you answer my email yet?

First, note that I do NOT accept guest blogs and artificial link building. Don’t expect an answer for those.

My email policy is the following: if it takes less than 2min to answer, I usually try to do it right away.  I check my emails in the morning, during lunch break and after 6pm on week days. If it requires a longer answer, I often come back to people in Friday. Since I don’t work on Friday for my clients, I have more time to do this. If you haven’t heard from me within 2 weeks, maybe the email got caught by my spam filter. Feel free to reach out for a follow up.

I had an issue with my contact form from August 22 to Sept 29, anything sent between those dates was lost.

There is a problem with a resource / article you shared on social media / your blog and  it doesn’t work for me.

I usually open the content I share, either in Firefox desktop, or Android. But I do not test the content on all the browsers. If something doesn’t work properly, or some content doesn’t display properly, if it’s not my site, there is very little I can do about it. You can answer to the tweet or the post if I tagged the author to let them know there’s an issue. If the author is not tagged, telling me it doesn’t work won’t help. Please tag the author and explain to them you issue. They might be able to help.

Why did you block me?

There’s 99% chances that you said something sexist, racist, ableist, homophobic, transphobic to me, or someone I know. I am not a big fan of people insulting marginalised folks on social media. I also use some tools that automatically block lists of people. Because, let’s face it, twitter is a toxic platform. Maybe you ended up on one of those lists.. One of those tools also blocked a conference I was speaking at once, because the conference created the twitter account and mass followed a lot of people very fast so that tool considered it was bot behaviour. Accidents happen, tools are not perfect. If we never interacted, you got blocked and you think it was a false positive, please reach out.

I am not happy about something you posted on social media and need you to know it.

If you don’t like my content, you can always unfollow me, or mute me. No hard feelings here. I will not change who I am nor what I share and how I share it to accommodate someone’s personal taste.

Posting content on my blog

Do you accept guest blog posts?

No, I don’t accept guest blog posts. Now that you are warned, if you still reach out to ask about that, you officially owe me some sushis!

Short answer: no, you can’t. 99.9% of the demands I get for those are SEO people, trying to sneak a random link, that barely related to my content, into one of my articles. I hate that. And I don’t participate in the artificial link building spiel. I even wrote a blog post with Myriam about that: Linkbuilding: The Citizen’s Field Guide.

Now, if you have really amazing content, preferably non commercial one, that will add value for my users, you can always send me a message. But, remember, there’s a 99.9% chance you won’t get an answer.

Can you share my content with your audience?

Maybe. Depends on the content. You can always send me the link. I often prefer to share open source content and blog posts that are from people, than from companies. But it will depend on the quality of the content.

I won’t share a tool I didn’t test. So, if there is a paywall on your content or tool and I need to pay for it to test, I simply won’t (unless you provide me an account to test)

Starting a career in UX Research and UX Design

A few questions I get often about starting a career as a UX researcher or designer, so I put together a few ressources

What books should I read?

Of course, ​​here is a  list of selected books I personally recommend about design and more. There are even more books list at the bottom of the article

What blog and resources should I follow?

I curate a list of 80+ blogs and podcasts you can follow to get you UX career started

How do I find my first job?

Please check my “ask me anything how can I find my first UX job

Can you help me with user interviews?

Maybe my user interview and follow up questions cheat sheet could help?

What design tools to you use / should I use?

Another great “it depends” answer. For my current client, I used Sketch for UI and Axure to build prototypes for user research. I work in a bank where tool access is limited, so all those tools are on my consultant laptop. More about that in my The Pragmatic Designer: Local and Self Hosted Design Tools article. For teaching class and remote workshops, I use Figma and Miro.

As to you, I would say, use the tools that work for you, your client, and your budget. Honestly, once you learn a design tool, the learning curve for the other ones is quite slow. Figma is the hot one at the moment, but if you work in a place where they don’t allow cloud tools, you might have to adapt.

Fun personal questions you might not care about but I will answer anyway

What is your favorite pizza?

I was asked this question during a conference because I had a full 45 min of pizza recipe examples. So, my favorite pizza is usually the vegetarian one, because it often comes with eggplants or artichokes. Then I ask them to add some bacon or ham. And watch the waiter, trying to figure out what the hell they just heard.

What champions do you play in video games?

In League of Legends, mostly support enchanter: Karma, Lux, Seraphine. I also like Senna a lot. I’m a big fan of Soraka and Yuumi, but, in Wild Rift, if you don’t know the whole team, not playing a support that has enough DPS to clear a lane is complicated. Most people don’t know how to keep the tower, will chase in the jungle and you end up with a zero dps Soraka watching minions under a tower that will, inevitably, fall. I also enjoy mid Oriana and Ahri. And Xayah adc (and Rakan support). I don’t play melee champions, I hate it in most games.

In Borderlands, I loved both Sirens of Borderlands I and II. In Borderlands III I played FL4K. Because he has a pet. I am a HUGE pet fan. Give me all the pets!!! In Diablo III I had a demon hunter, with the ring to get all the companion pets, some items to get skeletons, some PNC following me, etc. Yup, I like to build my own small army of friends and pets!

So, yeah obviously, I play a Spore Warden, second class Graveborn with tons of Tediore weapons that bring even moooooar pets on the map!