Tuesday, April 26, 2016

What does a design (association) leader do?

Guest Post by Laura Ward, Director, User Experience Design, PayPal

[Editor's Note: Laura Ward is the daughter of my late friend/boyhood neighbor Dan Reuwee.  When I read her leadership post on Facebook, it seemed to offer valuable advice for association and nonprofit leaders.  She gave me permission to post her notes here.]

I recently met a terrific young designer at a networking dinner. She had a straightforward question for me, "How did you become a design director?" I hadn't given it much thought since my route seemed roundabout. Upon consideration, I understood that she would simply like to know how to prepare to become a design leader, on a path to directing a team of her own.

After a short story about my journey, I realized that there was much more practical information to give. What does a design leader do? So, here is a list of the things I think about. I try to keep these questions in mind as I go to meetings, do design critiques, meet with team leads and designers, and plan the future.

What does a design leader think about?