Design recruiters look for quick ways to classify potential hires. Very few CV’s or portfolio’s show the key characteristic that will get you the job or project. The best way to get your next job in design, is by having a clear vision for yourself and your work.
The first topic in a job or project interview
If you’ve ever been interviewed for a job, you know this: the first questions are about why you do the work you do. Recruiters, team leads and even project owners: they want to find out if you will deliver standout work. A vision helps you go further where others stop. Because.
What a vision is and why it’s important
A simple definition: a vision is a desirable situation made concrete and tangible.
Having an inspiring picture of something awesome in the future is great. You can work towards it. It’s a source of energy. In terms of your design career: having a vision focuses your scope, makes choices easier and helps people understand you and your work.
At DESIGNLADDER, we like it if visions are expressed in the form of goals, because goals are either reached or not yet reached: they’re clear.
A goal about impacting peoples’ lives: I want to cure obesity by building a social eating experience where people eat good food together, on- and offline.
If you want to influence the direction of a company or group: I want to make Southpaw the world’s most customer-centered martial arts company in the world. So I want to become VP of Design.
Or many designers are really after purely creation. I want to freely design graphics that I sell as prints on clothing and house items in my own online shop.
Let visionaries inspire you
A great way of finding out how people you admire have gotten to where they are, is simply browsing their portfolios or LinkedIn profiles. You will get a very good hunch of what they’re after and how they’re getting there. Someone who’s worked at Patagonia, WWF and The Ocean Cleanup – they’re obviously after solving environmental problems. Or if you know someone who runs their own studio: what jobs did they have before that, and what might they have learned there? Let others inspire you to have a vision for your own design career.
How to create your vision
A quick way to create a solid vision by using a design tool called ‘A day in the life’. Designers use A day in the life to describe how a finished design will influence its users. A day in the life is an awesome tool to apply to your own future too.
Things might turn out a bit different than you envisioned and that’s fine. A detailed vision is aspirational and has self-fullfilling powers. So describe the WHAT of your goal in full detail to increase your chance of realising it.
Your vision inspires others too
If you can communicate your vision clearly, people will want to be part of it. Give it a significant spot on your CV, portfolio or elevator pitch. If you put it out there, you will iterate it based on how people react.
Good luck creating your vision. Make something beautiful to look forward to!
Need help creating your vision? There’s an app that helps you do this and much more within 1 day.