Grow As Product Designer

Vertical

As working experience grows, product designers will take more responsibility in the team and the company. The scope of work for designers will change from concrete deliverables to management and then to strategy and business.

Entry level: Analyze user/business requirements, wireframing, writing product design documents, etc. This stage focus more on execution tasks. Designers at this stage need to master quite a few design tools and understand basic design workflows.

Senior level: Coordinate resources, manage product deliverables, conduct user/market research. This stage requires more communication and negotiation skills. Project and team management is important at this stage as well. Designers at this stage need to master communication skills. It is also important to be able mentor junior designers.

Strategy level: Define product strategy, figure out growth planning, setting north star for the team, create product roadmap according to business and market situation. This stages focus more business acumen and market sensitivity. Designers at this stage are generally considered as entrepreneurs or business leaders.

Horizontal

Depends on the industry of a particular product serves, product designers need to focus on different skills.

A platform that matches supply and demands may require strong logical thinking in order to design rules and workflows that ensures fairness and efficiency.

A utility app may prefer designers who can come up with fancy interactive design to impress its users.

A news portal need designers good at information architecture to help users navigate and explore useful and interesting content.

Data analysis skill is important for ecommerces or marketplaces that rely on optimizing their conversion rates.

B2B products prefer designers with solid industry background whose experience can deliver solutions that covered various business concerns.

Products that rely on technology breakthroughs are well fitted for designers who understand its boundaries.