In this instalment of the Meet the Legl Team series, we chatted with Lindsay McDougall, who has been at Legl for over a year and works on the Design team as Product Designer.
Tell us a bit about yourself!
I’m from Scotland. I studied Interactive Media Design at university in Edinburgh. I initially started my design career as a communications designer at an accounting software company. This involved designing illustrations, landing pages and social media assets. I soon became more interested in designing software so left to pursue product design.
Why did you choose to join Legl?
I joined Legl after working at a software agency. After 3 years and working on many projects I felt ready to become an in-house product designer. I wanted to move to a product company where I’d be working on a feature-level rather than churning through multiple web apps at once. I like a faster paced environment and as a start-up Legl was perfect.
What does a typical day look like for you?
My first “meeting” of the day is morning check-in. This is an optional meeting at 10am just to say hello before getting properly stuck into work for the day. It’s an opportunity to have a casual chat with the rest of the team, the kind of chat you’d probably have while making your morning coffee in an office.
My next meeting in the morning is stand-up. This is a more formal check-in. We gather in our sub-teams to give updates on our current workload. We’ve recently shaken this up so everyone answers the same four questions:
- Any blockers?
- Priorities of the day?
- Needs from others?
- Is anything at risk?
At the end of stand-up, we give an update on goals for the current iteration.
Depending on the stage of the current project I’m working on I’ll either be in the discovery phase or the design phase. Currently I’m in the discovery phase. Right now that involves understanding the problem by talking to the product manager on the project and reading any materials I can find online. Once I understand the problem I’ll do some competitor research, I’ll find out how our competitors are marketing similar features and, if I’m lucky, I might even find screenshots/videos.
If I’m working on improvements to an existing feature I’ll take an audit of what we have today. Most of this discovery work ends up spread between Miro and Notion.
When it’s time to start producing designs, depending on the project, we might start with “low-fi” designs. The aim here is to get the general flow down without worrying too much about the small details. I’ll get these ready then, either using Figma comments or by having a quick meeting, will go through them with the product manager on the project.
Throughout the design phase we’ll be frequently sharing designs. Rather than hosting large meetings for feedback we’ll use Loom to share the latest designs. A Loom is a video and screen recording tool, ideal for a quick rundown of a design. People can look at a Loom in their own time and leave comments on the Loom or in Slack or Figma.
On Wednesdays the design team meets for a “design power hour.” This is a weekly meeting where we all run through something we’re working on and get feedback. It doesn’t matter at what stage we’re at, the aim is to get more eyes on our work. This session is great for idea generation.
What’s the most interesting project you’ve had at Legl?
Our ongoing monitoring feature. Ongoing monitoring is a way for law firms to continuously monitor their clients’ anti-money laundering risk.
Ongoing monitoring is the first full feature I worked on. We had plenty of time for discovery so I was able to get my head around anti-money laundering processes, risk and why it’s important for law firms to continuously monitor their clients. The work was interesting and involved a lot of scope refinement and a few different prototypes. Now that I have a grasp on anti-money laundering, it’s helping me with current projects.
What’s your favourite part of the job?
The team! It really feels like everything is a team effort and there’s not a single person from whom I would hesitate to ask for help. There’s a real culture of growth and improvement. We hold regular retrospective meetings, both in our teams and for bigger projects. The way we work together regularly changes and improves. It really feels like we’re all in it together.
One exercise we’ll often do at the beginning of a project is a “Crazy 8’s” ideation session where a designer will gather people from different functions within the company to tackle a problem. We’ve had great ideas from these sessions that have made it into the platform.
What’s it really like to work at Legl?
Working at Legl is great! We’re all remote – in engineering, product and design we have people from all over the UK and even Spain. Being remote, it’s important that we still carve out a bit of time to socialise with the team – we have regular “fun times”where we’ll all play an online game, and there’s an engineering, product and design Friday check-in to round off the week.
The company culture is great and there’s a real culture of learning and collaboration. The Legl I work at now is so different from the Legl at which I started. Teams have changed, reformed, and introduced new and better processes. Ideas have come from all across the team and people are always happy to embrace change and try new things out.
What changes have you seen since starting to work at Legl?
The team has more than doubled! We hired so much into engineering, product and design that we split into two different teams – named Ada and Val. We’re now working on multiple features at a time. When I started the whole team was working on the same feature.
How have you grown personally and professionally since joining Legl?
Professionally I feel like I’ve become better at viewing software features in the context of a much bigger application. With a platform like Legl, there are so many moving parts of which you need to be mindful when changing or implementing another feature.
What advice would you give someone who wanted to become a Product Designer?
I’d suggest if you’re wanting to become a product designer to really take notice of your interactions with different products. Understand why they’re easy, or even joyful, to use. If you have a terrible time booking a flight, think about why it was terrible and how it could be improved. Sign up for trials of software that you don’t need, just to have a look around. Use these interactions as inspiration in your own designs.
Seek feedback early and often, before you’ve even launched Figma or other design project software. It’s amazing what a different set of eyes on a project can highlight.
What do you like to do outside of work?
I just bought a house so I’m sinking my time into making it perfect at the moment! When I have downtime I love reading – we’re all given a “health and wellbeing” budget, so I used mine on a book subscription. Now I have no excuse not to read!
Legl is hiring! Visit our Careers page to see open positions, or simply submit your CV to us – we’re always on the hunt for great talent as we scale.careersemployee profiles