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One of my cousins recently joined a creative agency as an entry-lever graphic designer. For the first couple of weeks, he was in complete disarray. Being relatively new in the professional field, he was unaccustomed to working in an office environment. As an experienced professional of graphic design, I helped him by providing some insightful tips that I picked up during my stint as a graphic designer.

The dilemma of not being able to adjust in a new working environment is what every newbie graphic designer faces. Newly joining designers constantly face issues in adjusting to the new set-up and fail to deliver their true potential. This happens especially when you don’t know what the tools of the trade are. Today I would like to assist my newbie graphic designer friends in adapting to the new environment with these valuable career advices:


1. Learn From Others:

Being new and relatively junior in practice, you must acknowledge the experience of your seniors and peers. Don’t be a know-it-all, instead learn from others. Make a note of all the insightful tips and pointers given by the people already working there. Bear in mind that the people who are more experienced that you will have learned from their mistakes. So being new, you can learn from them and avoid the mistakes that they made. Never feel ashamed in asking for help from others.


2. Remember Names:

Although I understand that some people are terrible at remembering names, it is crucial to grasp the names of all your colleagues and peers as soon as possible. Not only will this make a positive impression on your co-workers, they will treat you with respect and admiration. When you call people by their name and not just by their designation, it creates a long-term bond between the two of you which is vital in team work.


3. Ask Questions:

Many a times, young graphic designers who are hired at the entry-level feel shy in asking anything at all. Whenever you face an issue and you want an answer, never hesitate in asking questions from the relevant party. Asking questions creates a positive impression on your boss who will think of you as an eager-to-learn and enthusiastic worker. No matter how dumb your questions may sound, don’t feel shy in asking and clearing the confusion.


4. Be a Team Player:

It is a totally different scenario if you’re working as a freelancer or in a design agency. Working self-employed means that you’re the sole man in-charge, you call the shots. But in an employed scenario, it is a team based effort. Being a newbie designer, you must learn to be a team player and work in a group. Learn to coordinate with your team members and acknowledge each worker’s effort.

5. Keep Your Stuff Organized:

One of the most common dilemmas of junior/entry-level designers is the disorganization of work. Since the work load of a new designer is cumbersome, you must keep your stuff organized and arranged. Most of your work will be on Photoshop or Illustrator, which involves scores of layers in a single file. A useful tip to be a successful graphic designer is to name your layers accordingly so that it will be easier to find them when any changes arrive.

6. Improve Via Criticism:

The problem with young blood nowadays is that they are not comfortable in hearing any form of criticism. They are so restless that they are averse to any disagreements. So for all the junior graphic designers out there, they must realize that criticism helps in improving and enhancing your skills. Learn to hear out others opinions and analysis about you. Instead of reacting negatively, try to take out positive aspects of the censure and improve on them.

7. Don’t Make Enemies:

Another simple rule for adjusting in a new environment is to make your graphic designer personality likeable. Avoid making any enmities with any of the co-workers as it badly affects your appraisals. Make more friends rather than foes as you wouldn’t want someone to be backbiting behind your back all the time. Try to keep good terms and conditions with everyone irrespective of status and position. You never know when and where your acquaintance with someone might come in handy.

8. Speak Out Your Ideas:

Sometimes, when graphic designers join a new place, they feel shy in expressing their ideas and opinions. The biggest threat that they assume is that they will be humiliated or embarrassed. If you believe that a certain logo can be made better through your logo design ideas, don’t feel shy in letting your co-workers know about it. But there is a thin line between making your point and arguing for the sake of argument. Every idea or feedback that you give will help you in your appraisal.
I hope that my tips will help newbie and entry-level graphic designers in coping up with their work related issues. I wish all the newbie designers all the best in their future endeavors. :)


Author Charlie B. Johnson

has written Posts 388 .

  1. Archanth On May 24th, 2011 at 8:01 am

    Never feel ashamed in asking for help from others. This is the worst demerit of a newbie. If a newbie who become shy to ask from his senior, it will take more days or months to become export in his professional. This is a good friendly advice to all the workers who join in a new company and enter into the new environment. thank you very much for this great share.

  1. joe On May 24th, 2011 at 9:20 am

    One tip that can be added. LISTEN. Good tip for newbies… equally good for seasoned designers.

    I’ve run into so many designers both newbie and seasoned that think they know EVERYTHING. Well guess what? You don’t. Listen to what a client wants before you tell them what they need.

  1. MONET On May 25th, 2011 at 5:47 am

    Nice. Thanks for the tips. Ive been afraid to go out in the graphic design corporate world. But this made the intimidation go down a bit.. thanks…

  1. Miroslav Svestka On May 25th, 2011 at 4:43 pm

    Very Very Good Points !
    But not only for Design Students … for any – one in business …

    Miroslav Svestka

  1. Multyshades On May 27th, 2011 at 12:52 pm

    This article would be more than helpful for newbies, very well written..

  1. Rosemarie On May 29th, 2011 at 4:52 pm

    Awesomenesstastic!! Very Helpfull!! Thank You!!

  1. shabnam On June 1st, 2011 at 3:37 am

    Col ideas!! I really like it because Coz i have gone through these situations and learned a lot. At my first job i faced lot of difficulties, but i coped up nicely. asking questions is my habit, never expressed i know all. I was very dedicated to my job, and my boss was really impressed with my performance that i got promotion very soon. Your writing really touched my heart. Of course you must have great experience in professional life, so that you could write such a great post. Hats off to you!!

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    [...] tratto da Graphic Design Blog – pubblicato il 24 Maggio 2011 – Versione Originale [...]

  1. April On June 6th, 2011 at 7:16 am

    Newbie Graphic designers really need help from others. Learning from other’s experiences can be really helpful and it can be beneficial to the newbie. Be curios and ask questions! It’s never wrong to double check to prove that you’re right or wrong. There is nothing wrong with trying. Speak out your ideas but be sure not to make any conflicts. Be friendly enough to entertain other ideas too. Thank you for the post! It was really informative!

  1. Graphic Zen On June 6th, 2011 at 6:12 pm

    Thanks for sharing your brilliant ideas..Yes i agree about The dilemma of not being able to adjust in a new working environment is what every newbie graphic designer faces. Newly joining designers constantly face issues in adjusting to the new set-up and fail to deliver their true potential…

  1. Luke watts On June 10th, 2011 at 5:53 am

    Wow…Million dollar words, I am wondering from where you get such wonderful headings and words for the same. Great job keep posting.

  1. Rongdhonu Graphics On June 18th, 2011 at 6:16 am

    Nice Tips……….

  1. Erica On June 23rd, 2011 at 9:20 am

    I am an entry level designer and had one other design job prior to the position I am at now. At my new position for a small company I am not only the graphic designer, but the marketing manager, creative director, photographer, [basic] web designer, advertising manager, ect. You name it, I do it. I have literally NO ONE else to refer to for help (in the office) or design questions except a few contacts via email. It can become very stressful to handle all of these responsibilities at once, all on my own. Luckily on slow days (very rare) I can watch a couple YouTube tutorials and learn a thing or two on my own.. I feel that in the long run I will be a very knowledgeable multi-talented young adult which can get me to an awesome position as my experience grows in the near future. Also at my age and experience level I feel that I am very lucky to have this job considering most people have to earn a position like this through a larger company, step by step. Anyone have advice for someone in my type of situation? P.S. I love this blog!!!

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    [...] The dilemma of not being able to adjust in a new working environment is what many new graphic designers face.  To help with the adjustment check out these 8 tips for new graphic designers courtesy of Graphic Design Blog. [...]

  1. Iriel On July 15th, 2011 at 11:33 am

    But what happens when who is teaching you in your new work, when you ask something important (TO YOU) in design topics, he tells you: “Don’t ask that, is silly and obvious”/ or when you try to give an advice about a logo or any other design work, the teacher say: “Don’t tell anything, you don’t know about this”…? Because is happening to me now, I can’t give any opinions or ask without a “ugly” faces and words.

  1. OnlinePrintingServices On August 14th, 2011 at 2:34 pm

    I think this is a solid list of tips for anybody starting out a new professional career. Learning from others, asking questions, and improving via criticism are all valuable tips. If these three things are done on a regular basis, you will quickly learn new skills and become very proficient. This curiosity and approach towards gaining knowledge will help you gain a deep skill set, thus making you a valuable asset to your team. Then, just be a reliable and personable individual, and you will be sure to be a success.

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