June 21, 2010 Off

How To Find A Design Job

By in Design, Job Finding Tips

You may have all the design skills and know how in the world, but all that is wasted if you don’t know how to put your skills to work. There are so many design programs that teach how to create ads and designs, but knowing how to find a job in design is just as important. So when you’re job-searching in this field, it’s important to keep some tips in mind.

Be persistent.

I honestly believe that if you try at anything long enough and hard enough, you will succeed eventually. Creative directors are busy people who you might have to harass a whole bunch just to wrangle a sit-down. While some might find your persistence to be an annoyance that interrupts their workday, some will definitely be impressed by your refusal to give up. It shows how badly you want the job, and that you’re passionate about the field (and their agency).


I am not a fan of schmoozing whatsoever. It seems like a pretentious and superficial part of the advertising world. But whether you like it or not, networking is important. Look into any design events, award shows and the like, and be sure to attend. Make some nice business cards that show off your design skills and bring them along. Get in touch with as many people as you can and learn how to successfully market yourself. Be sure to visit sites like designedgecanada.com to find events you can go to (and job listings too).

Be an intern.

I know the thought of working for free may seem impossible or just downright disagreeable. But for designers starting out, internships can be unavoidable. Employers want to see how you work and take you for a test drive before hiring you full time. Those without experience need experience, and internships can help you get it. For designers who are experienced, an internship might still be necessary when looking for a new job. And if you’re experienced you might get a paid internship. Let’s say you work at a direct mail agency and now your portfolio is full of brochure copy. If you want to work for a super creative agency, you’re going to have to prove yourself and an internship can help you do just that.

Perfect your portfolio.

I say perfect because your portfolio will never be perfect, and so you can keep working towards that impossible goal. An important thing I learned during my copywriting program is that your portfolio is never finished, ever. Never be satisfied with it. Never be content and sit back and marvel at all your genius work. You have to keep updating, keep improving, keep fine-tuning your skills. Also when you’re looking for jobs you should really research the agency you’re applying to. Look at their clients and their portfolio, and have similar work in yours. If they see that you can write good copy for a financial institution and one of their biggest clients is CIBC, you’re really showing how you can be an asset to the agency.

Keep all these things in mind when you’re job-searching and apply them with unwavering determination. Sooner or later, the right opportunity will present itself and you’ll be ready for it.

About: Ian:
Hi, I'm Ian T. I'm a York grad and a copywriter for Eden Advertising. I'm the master of procrastinating. I like to use parentheses (sometimes). I love the LCBO because wine makes me happy. I don't blog, I capture moments in time.

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