Startup stories: A junior designer’s perspective

Introduction

Hey fellow junior designers! Have you ever wondered what working at a startup is like? Having worked at a startup for 2 years myself, I have some stories to share with you. That’s why I’ll be creating monthly posts about my experiences!

Disclaimer: I’m still young and learning. My stories may not have any meaning for you, but I’m trying to spark a conversation!

Kicking off my little side project with the first chapter: So much work, so little time.

Actual representation of me. Thanks drawkit.io for the assets!

Chapter 1: So much work, so little time

Working at a startup as the only designer means that you’ll probably do a lot. I finished my bachelor with a specialisation in User Experience Design, but in the past years I found myself creating social posts/flyers/posters, copywriting, performing some HR specific tasks and managing interns. Next to that, I’ve had my fair share of meetings about product ownership, company growth and recruitment.

For a long time, my work life felt cluttered. There was little to no light at the end of the tunnel. Endless conversations that went “Hey can you quickly do this? I really need this. Oh and I need it today.”. We’ve all had these conversations at some point. Don’t get me wrong, even with the amount of stress I really loved what I was doing, but this way of working only made me more exhausted. So of course, that needed to change.

After consulting some people, it seemed like I needed to start planning my tasks ahead (no, not with the Fleks tool, but you can! Check out www.fleks.works for more info 😉) and put effort into creating a funnel structure that would work for me and my team. And that’s exactly what I did! I’ve been using a simple Trello board to keep up with my tasks. My team knows that every new design task goes into the Trello board, or it simply doesn’t exist. This method has been up and running for about 4 months now and having a birds eye view of all my tasks makes my work life much easier. It’s not just a task database, but also the backbone for my weekly planning. I know exactly what tasks I need to do, how much approximate time I’ll be spending on each task and with this in mind, I’m less scared of telling my superiors that I simply don’t. have. time.

So from a junior designer’s perspective, how is working at a startup like? Hectic! But only if you allow it to be hectic.

Enough about my perspective, what’s your story? Do you have similar experiences? Let’s help each other!

Thanks for reading!

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Monika Rutten

Monika Rutten

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Designer by day, gamer by night. Also new on Medium, hello!