9 Tips for Landing Your Dream Design Job

9 Tips for Landing Your Dream Design Job

Both full-time employees and freelance designers dream about getting great jobs that help them evolve professionally and pay the monthly bills at the same time. Unfortunately, more often than not, there seems to be a huge gap between our job and our dreams. We often accept jobs that we don’t particularly like just because we need the money and then we refuse interesting jobs because they are not so well paid. How can we find the right jobs, that can ensure professional satisfaction, recognition and money?

Connect With People

Even if you think your social skills are not excellent, keep in mind that networking always opens the right doors. Try to connect with people from the companies you admire, learn about them and support them. Participate in your local design community, volunteer for important organizations and demonstrate your capacity to accomplish tasks as a team player.  Also, check if someone from your network already has some personal connection to one of the firms you are interested in and ask them to introduce you.

Once they’ve found out about your skills, HR people might be interested in your services and invite you to interviews. You are so close to your dream job. Just mingle with the right guys and it will happen.

Designing is Team Work

It’s alright to demonstrate your unique talent and amazing skills during the interviews, but also bare in mind that designing is a collaborative process that involves an entire team. Therefore, don’t forget to mention the contribution of the other team members along with your role in the projects you were involved in. This way, you will demonstrate your ability to fit in the team you join and your desire to bring added value to its projects.  

Build An Amazing Website

What better way of showing your great web designing skills than building yourself a stellar personal website? Just like your résumé, the website is a good way to demonstrate your web design skills and showcase your work. Think about including interesting details about your, interests and hobbies that would inspire people to want to meet you. If you aren’t an experienced programmer or designer, you can create a website from blank using a popular website builder like Squarespace and choose a logo from Designhill’s logo templates.

The Résumé Isn’t Everything

Although it is essential to have a good résumé that gets the attention of potential employers, having a nice résumé is not enough to land your dream job; also post on all social platforms (LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook ) a complete portfolio that represents you as a designer. This is where hiring professionals will go to check you out.

If you decide to contact certain companies yourself, crafting a good cover letter/inquiry email is also important for making a good first impression. To avoid making mistakes, do some research about the company/person you are sending it to.

If you are good, money will come to you

If you want to find real, complete satisfaction in your work, don’t focus primarily on the money. Just find the jobs that bring you satisfaction and focus on them without thinking about the material compensation. The money will find you if you are really good and passionate about your work.  

Personal development

Developing a personal brand is similar to product branding. The overall goal with branding is to differentiate yourself (the product) in the market so you can attain your objectives, be those landing your dream job or becoming a famous singer. The process includes defining your brand and brand attributes, positioning your brand in a different way than your competitors and then managing all aspects of your personal brand.

Personal development can be intimidating but if you have a solid plan you should see results within months. Start by choosing a recognizable domain name. Weird TLDS are starting to get more popular. A lot of people are starting to embrace .IO, .ly or even .nz domain names

Your game plan also needs to include the specific social media aspects you’ll use to convey your new personal brand (such as LinkedIn, Facebook FB +%, Twitter, blogs, etc.) and how you will use each of those aspects to build your brand.

Minimize Your Social Media Activity

We all know how addictive social media can be. But if you want to get closer to your dream job, it is very important not to waste your precious time in activities that don’t bring you anything positive. Time is more important than money  because you can’t get it back or replace it.

So, just try to limit your time on social media to a few minutes a day, focus on your work and try to learn something new each day. Keep a journal of new acquired skills, make a list of books to read and designer portfolios to study.

Don’t Be Modest

Being modest is good, but not when you write your résumé. For all the jobs that you list, stress your role in the process and the difference you’ve made for every particular project. Illustrate how your work helped the company reach its goals.

Always Keep It Real

When presenting your skills and your work, focus on your core skills. Talk about your passion for sketching, drawing, modeling. You can even bring your sketchbook with you at the interview. Anything goes, as long as it genuinely tells a consistent, compelling story.

This post is part of our contributor series. It is written and published independently of TNW.

This post is part of our contributor series. The views expressed are the author's own and not necessarily shared by TNW.

Read next: Top Tech Skills You Need to Have on Your Resume in 2017