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[Draft] Yes, UX is Political

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As long as you are working in Product Design, or just as simple as proceeding your career to the next level, you will find yourself trapped into what we often call, the Politics of a company.

But why?

Can't we just simply avoid it? — We can't.

Not long ago I saw a job description posted by Mr. Hiếu – Group CPO of Seedcom – for a position called Product Operation Manager. You can see the JD on his Facebook.

I heard a lot of questions raised about what really does this person do in the organization? Some would say:

  • Seems like a CPO assistant – you report and help CPO execute stuff because the CPO (Mr. Hiếu himself) might be too busy.
  • Seems like Scrum Master in Agile
  • and more...

I have realized from the beginning what Mr. Hiếu meant was a ProductOps person. ProductOps such as DevOps, DesignOps and ResearchOps. I bet that you must be at least familiar with DevOps.

What is ProductOps?

And what is the relationship with my statement "UX is political"?

If you read the JD in the link above, there will be one thing worth all of the attention. Pay close attention to the small * he wrote at the end:

Do all the necessary things to make sure all the activities in the product team happen in the most optimized and effective way.

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This sentence explains everything. As a [prefix]Ops person, your task is to make sure all processes are executed in the right way, all the activities are carried out, all people are happy with the team. You create a positive work culture, you encourage people to communicate, mentor and help each other grow.

And to do that, you involve yourself into Politics. Because now your tasks involve other people, affect other people, sometimes conflict with other's benefits.

This could not be more accurate as in UX, or design in general.