Open letter from James Archer

What designers need most in their early careers is also one of the hardest things to come by: advice. From networking to negotiation, from inspiration to innovation, from perseverance to project management, designers need to hear from those who have gone before them. Unfortunately, they often don’t know who to ask, or they don’t want to bother the designers they most admire, so instead they keep to themselves and wind up making the same mistakes over and over again.

Experienced designers, on the other hand, often find themselves so tangled in their daily work that even if they wanted to help less-experienced designers, they wouldn’t even know where to start. It seems so daunting to get started that they just stay in their office, staring at their monitors day after day.

It’s time to change all that. That’s why AIGA Arizona is undertaking a major mentorship initiative aimed at activating respected designers in the local community to serve as mentors for less-experienced designers, design students, and youth interested in design.

If you’ve been working in the design industry for some time, I hope you’ll take a few moments to learn more about this initiative and how you can help. And if you’re a design student, you’ve recently entered the design profession, or you’re simply interested in design as a career, I hope you’ll take advantage of our mentors’ generosity.

No matter your perspective on the design industry, there’s no denying that there’s a constant, vital need for designers with experience to share their lessons with those who are just coming into the field. It’s the most efficient, effective, and essential way for us to rapidly improve the state of our industry and build a better future.

Will you join us?

James Archer
Mentorship Director, AIGA Arizona
CEO, Forty

By communications
Published February 22, 2014