Get Worked Up: Leading Creative Teams, Eleazar Hernandez

Following is a brief summary of the presentations from Get Worked Up conference, September 22.
Part 6

Leading Creative Teams
— Eleazar Hernández

It is never too soon to think about your future. Early in your career is the best time to understand how a design studio works.

Creative directors often fail when they begin running design teams because they are unable to make the transition from being a design producer to being a designer leader.

Designers make stuff and creative directors lead.

Understanding the role(s) each member of a design team plays, will help you be a successful designer now and an effective creative director in the future. Also, working for an intuitive, effective creative leader, especially when getting your career started, will help you be a better designer.

These are some of the essential skills that a creative director needs to have:

  • Approachable and accessible
  • Encourage a creative culture of honesty
  • Talk to your team — solicit & give advice (not redesign)
  • Be specific and constructive
  • Give everyone a chance(s)
  • Take the blame when things don’t turn out so well, and share the credit
  • Inspire your team, do not change the solution if it meets the client’s needs

Being familiar with the role a creative director plays in a studio will strengthen your current design skills, widen your current understanding of studio management, and provide a foundation for perhaps a future position as a creative director.

Take Away: It is never too early to think about what comes next. Understanding the differences between roles will help you be a better designer now and set you up for success as a creative director down the road.

Eleazer has written the book on how to be a creative director. Literally. Leading Creative Teams: Management Career Paths for Designers, Developers, and Copywriters is available as a paperback or as an ebook from Amazon.

Eleazar Hernández
Site: Creative Culture Design and Digital – Success by Design
Twitter: @ourcreativcultr
Instagram: @wearecreativeculture
Behance: @creativeculture
Linkedin: Creative Culture Design & Digital

More Get Worked Up Presentations:

Mitch Goldstein, Start at the Start

Do It Anyway: Finding Opportunity in Unusual Places, Nicole Cooke

Do what you love, and you’ll still feel like you are working (sometimes), Sam Fuller

Vote Oswego Design strategy, Danielle Benincasa

#TruthTella: Lessons Learned, Curtis Canham
Present Yourself, Milo Axelrod

Holy Sh*t! I got my degree, Casey Kelly
Closing Remarks, Co-President Shauna Keating

More information about the AIGA Emerge program:  https://www.aiga.org/emerge

Upstate New York Twitter: @upstatenewyork
AIGA Emerge Twitter: #aigaemerge

By Andrea Duquette
Published September 25, 2018