I’ve been looking at a lot of articles about what employers are looking for when hiring a graphic designer. Many of them list the common items like software skills, a good book, good with type, being a team player, and flexibility. These are all important attributes, but the one skill set I saw the most was the ability to communicate, verbally and written.

ad

 

That’s right, employers are looking for creatives that are equally creative when it comes to talking and writing, »Good communication skills, both verbal and written, are essential for a graphic designer to do the best job possible« (allgraphicdesign.com). Gone are the days of a designer just sitting at their desks and tolling away at concepting and production. More and more, employers are looking for designers with multiple skills: design, concept, critical thinking, webdesign, front end coding, multiple coding languages, software knowledge, production, and now more than ever, communication and people skills. The Houston Chronicle reports »[Graphic designers] should also have good written and verbal communication skills for communicating with clients, colleagues and employers.«


 »You need to connect with your client on a personal level. The better you are at presentations the better you will be at gaining your client’s trust.«


How else do we expect our clients to understand how we research and develop concepts and ideas? A good designer should be able to clearly explain the thought process behind that big idea she thinks is so great. »Pitches, by their very nature, force you to elevate your game and do your best thinking. By the end of the process you should know exactly what you stand for as an agency and, consequently, what makes you different from the folks that you are competing against« says Noelle Weaver, Chief Growth Officer at Contagious Magazine (adage.com). Clients are won and lost every day because of the designer’s ability—or inability—to pitch a concept.

 

If you want to sit at a desk and simply toil away at the computer screen, you don’t want to be a designer; you want to be a coder or production artist. Designers are required to interact with people not just as a client-to-designer relationship but on a person-to-person relationship level. The client has to feel as you and she are partners that help grow her company, extends it, expands the company’s reach. You need to connect with your client on a personal level. The better you are at presentations the better you will be at gaining your client’s trust. We are communication designers visually, verbally, and written.