6 Excellent Places to Find Co-Designers (Co-founder designers) and we aren't on-line.
Having an idea is one thing. Understanding the in’s and out’s to execute a business is another. In today’s world your product and service needs to not only speak a strong story but have an edginess that differentiates itself from the rest. While your co-designer will be your next best friend in starting a company, they are also one of the more difficult people to work with. (Yes, I said it). The following outlines a quick 6 step recipe for where to look for finding a co-designer that meets your expectations, is friendly and bleeds the creative blood your company needs to sell itself.
Let us first define designers: A designer is generally the architect or visionary artist that assists in function definitions while making either a space or activity comfortable and attractive for the end user. While they perform simi-business related tasks, they generally cannot be levied in a way of standard organization. For example, most designers are said to be, “on their own time”, in “outerspace” or “Just doesn't get what we are trying to do here.” Well, they are not suppose to. That why you get them on board.
Creative individuals are understood by their audience’s perception, not yours.
So how do you find your co-designer to be in line with you and your mission within all of the cosmic dust? We take you through 6 key scenarios to find your perfect dreamer or find the creator you needed to make your company come true:
1) Edgy places to eat — yes it is true, designers like to eat at the dark Chinese places late at night. While I am actually not generalizing here, there is a point to this statement. Creatives seek originality and are not afraid to try new things. I know four founding companies have found their co-founders at MeDign, the Tattered Cover’s Indie Coffee house, and places that are usually under represented. Finding the girl with the dragon tattoo at the back of the coffee shop may not be your ideal outcome, but as a founder it is important to continue exploring your neighborhood (maybe once a week go somewhere different) and trying new things, only then can you meet new exciting people.
2) Talk to your Waiter, Retailer or Physical Trainer. Designer’s come in all shapes and sizes and many have a hobby or a second job. Asking people about what they like other than what they do may come as a surprise and invoke interest between the two parties. I have never found a Designer that doesn't have an intense interest for something else. Like everyone, duel interests and hobbies and even second jobs are healthy as they break up the day and creative blocks that all designers face. Finding someone that can bustle around in the service industry is a valuable trait in the business world.
3) Book Stores. Finding your key co-designer working on something in the corner of your local bookstore is something of common. Now, there is a difference between stalking a designer at work in the coffee shop and stirring up a conversation about the book they just purchased. Like any other situation, one need a bit of “suave” looking to provoke common interest between you and your future team mate.
4) Teaching events and Individual Meet Up events. There is nothing like going to an event that you find interesting and finding that talented soul standing right next to you. Spark up a conversation easily by asking why they are here (with a tone of humor). Chances are, is that they are here for a similar reasons you are.
5) School. Second largest yet. Finding that goof-ball that walked in with Google glass is the common scenario of them all. The cool thing about school is that talents are separated by majors. Need a business developer, head over to the business school. Need a designer, go take a studio course. Take electives that you know nothing about to find that special person that is essential to the team. Electives and intramural sports are vital to the success of finding your special founder.
6) Coworkers or Client offices. The best way to find your co-designer is to work with him or her in the past. Find a coworker that has more passion than you do in subjects different from your own. Enjoy office-swap days and company outreach events. And don’t be afraid to talk to people in the corner, many great relationships that I build are with those that are shy or soft-spoken. Generally they can be your best finds. Find a coworker that cares and is willing to learn new technologies along the way are traits that you can pick up on in the first 6 minutes of talking to someone.
In every change of schedule that you make or do something out of the ordinary, you will be more inclined to find new people. Some that are willing to take on the same dream as you. The more you create and explore the more chance you have to meet new people and build your product greater than you first thought. But also be patient and always remind yourself that when speaking with any new business partner, you have to listen and be open-minded. Chances are, your next co-designer will be there waiting, excited to jump on board.