You’re reading an excerpt of Land Your Dream Design Job, a book by Dan Shilov. Filled with hard-won, personal insights, it is a comprehensive guide to landing a product design role in a startup, agency, or tech company, and covers the entire design interview process from beginning to end, for experienced and aspriring designers. Purchase the book to support the author and the ad-free Holloway reading experience. You get instant digital access, commentary and future updates, and a high-quality PDF download.

Remote Work and Location

In the times of COVID-19 many companies are now going remote. Some, like Facebook, Twitter, and Coinbase allow employees to permanently work from home. While not all companies are following this trend yet, it’s highly likely that in the future more opportunities will be geographically distributed.

If you are interviewing for a remote role, it’s important to dig into the details of the remote arrangement. Has the company done remote work before, or is this a first-time experiment? It’s not necessarily a red flag if you’re the first remote employee. That said, you should learn more about how the company will support you if you are the sole remote pioneer. Holloway’s guide on Remote Work is a good resource for anyone figuring out how to navigate the remote work experience.

Considering Industry Specialization as a Designer

One decision to consider when you’re looking for your next job is whether you want to specialize in a particular industry or domain. For example, you may want to specialize in the healthcare sector because you think that’s an area where you’ll make the most impact and you may already have some prior industry knowledge that can put you at an advantage. As an industry specialist, you’ll be able to get up to speed quickly on new projects and command a premium for your salary. Typically designers choose to specialize later in their careers, but there is no right approach as it’s largely a personal choice.

You can also consider remaining an industry generalist. This may be a good choice when you’re not yet sure if there’s a particular industry you want to focus on and if you still want to double down on your design skills. Your lack of context sometimes may also be an advantage as it may lead to breakthrough solutions that a specialist may have missed.

Specializing in an Industry

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