Challenges faced by junior Designers or interns in huge creative companies
Working in a creative industry or firm has very many great opportunities and advantages that can barely be found in other industries. This is due to the environment, strategies, and models used in these companies as a way of ensuring that all the workers remain creative, full of new ideas and innovative at all times, to produce great results that will meet and even surpass the expectations of the customers. However, there are also various challenges which are faced by workers who settle in this field of creative design (Dass, Goodwin, Wood, & Ni Luanaigh, 2015). Many of the challenges are associated with the process of design, convincing the clients about various design aspects, dealing with nagging customers who like to take up the role of the designers, issues with payment of jobs on time and conflicts within designers on the best end designs to present to the clients, among many other challenges.
After conducting a thorough study and also through conducting interviews on two major creative agencies’ in the UK, it is apparent there is also another major challenge in many creative firms which is the issue of receiving attention or having your ideas accepted or listened to if in apposition of a junior designer or even an internship at some of these major creative firms. Therefore the major issue to be addressed in the report is on the issue of being a junior designer or an intern in a huge creative industry, with two firms in the UK providing the appropriate case study.
Overview of the firms
The two firms identified for this report are Ogilvy & Mather and McCann Erickson, where both are creative agencies where both are based in the United Kingdom. Both firms are arguably every creatives and designer’s dream working place, due to their great working environment, great brand and also the types of companies that they associate with. The creative process of a company like Ogilvy and Mather is top notch and is one of the nest in the world more on the creative industry. The two firms rank have constantly ranked among the top ten best creative agencies in the UK, due to the quality of their operations, prowess by their creatives, great HR practices and their overall results with regards to revenue realization, profit margins, and continuous growth.
Both have been constantly praised by the clients on their design process, where they have a well laid out process from the inception of a design idea to its execution.
They constantly create ads that reflect their customers’ requirements and also make designs that show the respective brand presence. They have also been applauded for their product and social campaigns strategies, where in most cases they have positive reviews from their customers who are always making repeat visits for more designs and creatives for boosting of their brands. This success can be attributed to the team of expert designers, who have a great experience, have good educational backgrounds and the teamwork among the workers.
Challenges faced by the junior designers and interns
The prowess by the senior and more experienced designers in the two firms clearly show that they would be very insignificant input from the interns or even the junior designers in the respective companies. This may be a negative side of the great work which is executed by the designers since it is evident there is no collaboration or inclusion f the new young designers or the interns who before joining a given firm has a thought that they would get to grow and improve in their prowess in the creative process. A review by an Ogilvy and Matter intern is a first example that shows the failure to include everyone in the design process, hence disadvantaging the young individuals from growing and thereby limiting them from getting to the level in which the senior creatives are at.
From the review by one of the former Interns, the culture, people and the overall experience of Ogilvy was great and enjoyable. However, the intern argues that there is a huge disconnect between the HR coordinators and actual supervisors at the organization. This made it very tough for the new members, more so the interns, since the supervisors are not conversant with what to give the interns. According to this particular intern, this challenge did not just affect him, but rather is a challenge faced by the majority of the interns who are there to get conversant with the design process but end up playing online games and gazing at the sky instead of helping with the creative process. This means that despite the motivation and hard work by an intern, his/her input would not mean much to the end design and creative process and the success could only be attributed to the senior designers.
As much as this may be a personal feeling by one of the interns in the company, it gives an overall reflection of the challenge faced by many interns and junior designers in the creative industry, who were barely involved in the process of design, and their creative ideas may be left unused despite the type of impact they may behave on the end design process to the company. Failure to join the young team in the design process means that fresh ideas from the young people may fail to be incorporated into a design project and hence limit the innovation and required creativity that may enhance the end design. It may also poise as a challenge to the young teams, who Amy fail to maximize their full potential in the creative world and leave the company without exploring their maximum capability, and talents in the design and creativity.
As for McCann Erickson, there have not been any review by an intern on how he/she feels about inclusion and working together with the senior team for mentorship and improvement in the design practices. However, it is evident that the firm’s senior design team is greatly skilled, making the company rank among the best in the UK and arguably in the world. The challenge likely to be faced by the juniors and interns are likely to be similar to the one mentioned by the former intern at Ogilvy where it is very common that the unskilled and the fresh persons in the creative department are not included in the design making process, a factor that denies them a chance to grow or improve on their skills.
Another challenge identified for most interns and junior developers is the fact that their contribution to a given design is not incorporated or even acknowledged in the end report on the project. This hence does not improve their portfolios, for the future career and engagements to show the creativity. However, this is a minor challenge in that in most cases as compared to the rest, the contribution towards the achievements made by the company can be noted down in the recommendation which can be very crucial for the growth of the minor designer on an intern in his/her future endeavors.
From the interviews conducted on persons who have been able to intern at either Ogilvy or McCann Erickson, the lack of full freedom to exercise on a design concept is also a major issue faced by not just interns and junior employees in these two companies but in most creative firms. For one to develop best design concepts, and have an interesting creative process, freedom of expression and to try out new concepts is very vital. This is a point known by the senor designers, who have space, can make mistakes and can come up as many mistakes as possible before settling on final creative design work. This freedom gives one the space to make as many mistakes as possible t, to play around with the creative [process, and also involve every stakeholder within the company.
The senior designers have the advantage of moving within their own pace, consulting everyone within the organization on the opinion about the concept, developments in design and also mistakes or even opinions about the design work. A junior designer or even an intern has no much freedom as the senior and already established designer. First, is because there is no permission to undertake such a bold move or even permission to get to some office within the departments. The junior members are also not confident enough to engage everyone in the office, and will take more time before they can adapt to such a practice and consult widely without fear of anyone or limitations. This hence gives the senior designers and creatives a major advantage on the final pieces and boosts up to their confidence in executing a design plan.
From the two cases, it is apparent that interns and junior designers have a huge challenge in interacting and working together with senior designers due to several reasons such as the intensity and deadlines for some design jobs could be a factor resulting to the disunity between the two parties. Other factors may include failure for firms to have structures and models that allow for a collaborative first between the experienced and the new designers and creatives within a form (Hermann, Pentek, & Otto, 2016). This negatively affects the growth of the intern or the junior creative since he does not get space of interacting with the persons with the prowess and more experience in the design filled. This also denies the junior worker a chance to identify areas in which he is best at with relationships to creativity and could end up not learning as much as he could have, had there be more team work between both parties in the organization.
The companies which do not fully utilize the junior employees within the creative industry are also disadvantaged. This is since, they fail to tap the new and great ideas from the interns and young creatives, then they may lose an opportunity to have better ideas which may boost the company brand, and make it keep up with trendiest designs and creative ideas that could put it in top of the competition (Dass, Goodwin, Wood, & Ni Luanaigh, 2015). The young minds within the creative team could also be able to work effectively as a team with the senior designers, where they could learn about skills in design, whereas they contribute on areas they feel needs to be changed or improved, depending on the new trends in the market.
The findings from the research are very vital for a person wishing to pursue the career path of a designer or a creative. First, it is apparent that by opting for a design course there is an end to have the passion and willingness to hard work to excel at design skills, and be covenant with crucial elements and concepts of design such as rules and principles of design, the various processes of design and any other elements within the design (Porter, 2019). This is since, in the course of joining a company for an internship program it is less likely that anyone will be wiling with helping you in understanding the basic concepts, but will rather be very engaged in attending to clients’ needs and the deadlines that are always present within a design or creative agency. With such concepts in mind, and a little prowess and practice in software and sketching of certain ideas, then it will be relatively easier to convince the superiors within t your idea could assist in solving a given design problem which they may be experiencing.
It is also apparent that communication skills are very crucial before joining any firm or organization as a creative. It may be very difficult to engage an individual or attract his/her attention without key communication skills (Dass, Goodwin, Wood, & Ni Luanaigh, 2015). Through such skills, raising a point about elements of design which is wrong will be relatively easier for a young designer or intern, and soon the senior staff members may begin taking note of the efforts, and gradually asks for help or guidance in times of challenge. Failure to proof oneself may result in one getting ignored or rarely engaged in matters of design, since they have not been able to prove their abilities and levels of expertise in the creative world.
With regards to future further directions, it is apparent that just like in any other careers, the creative industry is relatively challenging, more so when one joins it as a junior. It takes more than just hard work and effort, but rather getting to prove to the senior persons within the creative company that a person’s ideas can help in improving given challenges, and help in boosting the image of the company and also lead to customer satisfaction (Hermann, Pentek, & Otto, 2016). From the conducted interviews and other research materials, mentorship from more experienced perfusions in the filed could greatly help one in becoming a better designer or creative in the future. The reason behind this is the fact that persons with more experience and expertise in a given mater can offer guidance on areas where one goes wrong, addresses mistakes in the design process and also establishes a person’s strengths in which he /she should continue pursuing in the design field. Persons with many years in the design expert area also able to foretell normal mistakes make, and advice on the best path one should use when dealing with a design challenge or dealing with specific customers who have handed in the design task.
Through mentorship, then there is more growth and improvement of one’s abilities and skills in the design career. There is hence a need for creative companies to give more attention to their junior and interns to ensure that they are offered mentorship programs by their superiors in their design field in order to better their knowledge and competence in the filed.
There are multiple challenges experienced by junior designers and interns in a creative firm or industry. Most of these challenges include failure to get challenged enough. Where the senior designers solve the company, design issues alone. Engaging these persons in such activities would be very vital in that it would help them improve their knowledge on matters of design. It can also boost their competence in understanding the design elements and concepts and coming up with solutions that can be of benefit to a company. Firms need to engage them in teams together with the senior designers as a way of helping them with mentorship and boosting their confidence in the design industry.
Dass, M., Goodwin, A., Wood, M., & Ni Luanaigh, A. (2015). Sector insights: skills and performance challenges in the digital and creative sector.
Hermann, M., Pentek, T., & Otto, B. (2016). Design principles for industrie 4.0 scenarios. In 2016 49th Hawaii international conference on system sciences. 3928-3937.
Homburg, C., Schwemmle, M., & Kuehnl, C. (2015). New product design: Concept, measurement, and consequences. Journal of Marketing, 79(3), 41-56.
Porter, J. (2019). Facing Your Challenges, Finding the Finish Line.