This article was originally published on the Foundry on September 21, 2015.
I’m extremely excited by the influx of practitioners of all roles becoming interested in performance. There has been a large change in the conversation, thanks in no small part to Lara Hogan’s book (available for free—you have no excuse not to read it!) discussing the real performance issue being company culture and process.
I’m a firm believer that good performance requires education—not only for our own teammates of all disciplines but education for our clients from the first day of our engagement about how and why performance benefits our project. Only after we are all on the same page can performance truly shine throughout the entire process. One of my favorite performance conversations that has been picking up steam has been centered around what other roles outside of development can do to prioritize performance in our work, specifically designers. There are many things that a designer has to balance to craft a thoughtful and useful design, and aesthetic is a wildly important piece of that. Many people think that a fast site means boring design, but it is a balancing act to ensure that a site looks beautiful while delivering the content fast. Through trial and error the past year or so, I have found and tested various processes that help me keep performance as a priority in my work.