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Forward motion

2 minutes read

One thing I've witnessed first-hand that unproductive teams do is mistake motion for action.

It might feel like you're always in motion when you:

  • research the best automated test tools without ever implementing any of them
  • debate the accessibility guidelines without deciding on how to implement them
  • create extensive accessibility documentation that nobody uses
  • compile endless lists of accessibility tasks without prioritising them
  • spend too much time dissecting automated tool accessibility reports
  • write accessibility policies and guidelines and fail to enforce them
  • run awareness campaigns without following up with actionable steps
  • have meetings that call for more meetings

You'll get the illusion of progress and a false sense of accomplishment. They keep you busy, but they don't necessarily lead to tangible improvements in accessibility.

The key is to transition from these motions to actions that result in real, measurable changes, like when you:

  • implement changes based on user feedback
  • build and integrate accessible UI components, like forms or buttons
  • train your teams and ensure they apply this knowledge in their daily work
  • embed accessibility checks into your CI/CD pipeline so that issues are caught early on
  • combine automated tools with manual testing to catch a wider range of issues
  • capture and share successful accessibility improvements within your organisation
  • set leading indicators and track them early and often

These actions lead to concrete improvements in accessibility.

Here's the thing.

You can be on a hamster wheel and never move forward. It will feel like you're always moving, always doing something, always staying busy, without ever advancing a step.

And the way to get off the hamster wheel is not to run faster, but to stop, understand you're on a wheel, get off and re-assess the situation so you don't immediately jump on the next hamster wheel.

Did you enjoy this bite-sized message?

I send out short emails like this every day to help you gain a fresh perspective on accessibility and understand it without the jargon, so you can build more robust products that everyone can use, including people with disabilities.

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