“Design is the solution to a problem.” When approaching hiring a designer there are certain factors Monteiro addresses considering.
Clearing out the things the designer doesn’t need to deal with so they can directly get to the meat of the project is essential as an employer. When a company has a lot of extra clutter it is difficult to immediately cut to the chase. Like when you try to clean a home but have to clean up before you start cleaning. Clutter wastes time and time is your money.
Make sure to address that the changing of normal habits is the exact reason for hiring a designer. Effectively communicating that to your team is important to lay a solid foundation and respect for the designing process.
Humans are creatures of habit and when you introduce change there can be a lot of discomfort and resistance to revamp tradition. Tradition can hold back progression in a constantly evolving field of design. Monteiro addresses the importance of always supporting the designer when others react negatively due to discomfort or favoritism for the “old ways”.
Decide and give designers the authority to make final decisions and support them when they do. Like in any business things can and will go wrong, but it is how you react to those situations that dictates if you succeed. When a creative does not have the time, space, or authority to excite and execute the design they fail and sacrifice the creative opportunity. The other members also devalue their role and assume they could do the same thing.
Include the designer during the beginning stages of a project and do not make them a responsive xerox machine that executes previously set designs. As designers, we cannot sit back and wait to be told what to do by people who have already set the design. Internships are a great way to have test runs on what works and does not when taking control of projects at companies. If you never speak up you will never be noticed or heard.
As a designer I find it valuable to put myself in the shoes of the position that could potentially hire me. When you know what a company is looking for you are able to tailor what you do to maximize your contributions to the team. The last issue addressed in this article is that of setting up expectations for your job. If you do not know if you are doing your job well that is a major problem and you should always know where you stand. Schedule performance evaluations and at the end of projects you need to bring up critiques of what you did well and what absolutely failed. Do not be afraid to evaluate the performance of yourself and your team members. Know your value as a designer and always communicate what you are doing along with the vision you have that is supported by solid research and data.
By Chris Stuart ADVE Web Advertising Winter 2015