Sole designer at a startup? How do you grow in your role? What are the challenges of being a sole designer?

jlsigadel's profile thumbnail
I had a very brief experience being the sole designer of a startup which ended up not being the right opportunity for me for a number of reasons.. It's something I've briefly considered again as I look for jobs but feels like a lot to take on, especially with everything currently going on in the world. I actually recently spoke to someone who was a sole designer for a startup right out of college and they mirrored some of the same concerns. It's a lot of responsibility for one person, especially if there's no other design-y people in the company. They mentioned that if anything went "wrong" it felt like they were blamed and that mistakes were not tolerated.. It came off to me as a shared misunderstanding of how design works and that it's an iterative process. I feel like it would be better for startups in general to hire two designers to start.. Like a senior designer and a junior designer, to balance things out. To me, that shows an investment in design and not simply checking off a box. Unrelated: I contracted for Firebase earlier this year and wanted to say hello!