How to Approach Senior Designers?

Thauhid Hussain Chowdhury
5 min readJun 22, 2022

The atmosphere in Bangladesh’s design community right now is more exciting than ever. As designers, we look for senior-level assistance to advance in this profession.

However, due to their busy schedules, it is seldom easy to communicate with the senior designers. Due to the wrong approach, junior designers who reach out to seniors either don’t hear back from them or are disregarded. Both parties become irritated by this, which has an impact on the community as a whole.

I spoke with a number of senior and seasoned designers in our community to learn what kinds of approaches junior designers should follow when they are contacted. And as a result of my research, I came up with a guideline that I will share with you in this article. I hope this will help you in communication with senior designers.

এই আর্টকেলের বাংলা ভার্সনটি পড়ুন এখানে

Before Asking a Question

Start with Google before asking (very important!)

Always research a subject thoroughly before asking a senior for advice. Don’t ask a question before doing some Google search. Online materials and tutorials are widely available, including on Medium, YouTube, and other platforms. If none of those sources provide you with appropriate answers, you should consult a senior individual. This will demonstrate that you did some research before approaching them.

Learn about the person

Before approaching a senior with a query, it is important to do some research on his background. You can learn more about this by checking out his profiles on social media platforms, such as LinkedIn.

Select the proper channel

LinkedIn is regarded as an appropriate communication channel for professional use. However, you can communicate with them via other social media platforms, such as Telegram, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, etc. ADPList is also popular for mentoring programmes in our community.

Send messages in your spare time.

Seniors may respond immediately to your communications. It would be wise to allow some time for a response and for the conversation to continue after the question is posed. Seniors may request a quick phone call. So you should be available to join the call. Therefore, send a message when you are free and be available for at least 30 minutes.

Verify the time zone

These days, many designers reside abroad in various time zones. Therefore, please check their time zones before approaching them. Never send them a message while they are asleep. They may find receiving messages at midnight unpleasant.

While asking the question

Ask question in the first message

When I talked to senior designers for this article, almost all of them said that questions should be asked in the first message. Seniors are always busy, so it makes sense that they won’t be able to answer right away. And it’s possible that you won’t be there when they answer. But if you ask the question in your first message, a senior will probably answer it right away if he has time.

Introduce yourself

When you ask a question, tell them a little bit about yourself. So, seniors will learn more about you, which will help them give the best answer. It’s also a sign of professionalism to tell someone about yourself when you first meet them.

Ask with the context

While asking your question, you should provide enough context. Describe the problem you are solving, as appropriate responses differ based on the context.

Ask relevant questions

Before you ask a question to a senior, think about where they came from. Make sure your queries are focused on their particular area of knowledge. The UI designer is not the right person to consult about Product Management. Maybe he knows the answer, but he probably won’t be comfortable to answer that.

Be humble and grounded

The experienced designers know more than you do. So, they should be respected. If you don’t agree with one of the senior’s points, say so in a humble way or, better yet, don’t say it at all. Don’t compete with them. You will have a good relationship with him if you stay humble. Thus, he will be more willing to help you.

Show commitment and a desire to learn

When you ask a senior a question, always appear serious because you are there to learn from him. Don’t try to overwhelm too much, and don’t pretend to know everything. Instead, show your commitment to learning new things via your actions. Respect what the person says.

Asking for a job

When you approach a person for a job, please consider below points —

  • Give reference (from where have you learned about the job)
  • Tell a little bit about you
  • Attach your resume or LinkedIn profile

Directly asking for a job is disrespectful. Try to be professional and kind to the seniors. Show them you’re job-ready by how you communicate. They’ll give you a chance if there’s a vacancy and they like you.

After asking the question

Don’t rush

Most of the time, senior designers can’t answer right away. So, don’t rush to answer. Give them the freedom to choose how to answer. Don’t get mad if they don’t answer quickly. If they don’t answer after two or three days, remind them in a nice way. But don’t send messages all day and night and keep asking the same question.

Don’t send friend requests to his colleague and relatives

A lot of junior designers send friend requests to the family members and coworkers of senior designers on Facebook. It’s quite unprofessional. There are no benefits of being a Facebook friend of a senior’s family member. So, don’t do it. It’s clear that this is getting in the way of his private life.

Conclusion

In my opinion, getting responses from the seniors will be easier if we adhere to the above guidelines. I’m hoping we’ll be able to keep in touch with them and work together to make the community even better.

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