If you like the idea of pursuing a career in web design, but you’re still not sure if it’s a good fit, it’s important to learn a much as you can before making any costly decisions.
Web design requires technical knowledge of several programs, which, if you’re not already familiar with them, will likely involve a major investment of time and money. But before you fork over the cash for education or software, be sure you have the soft skills needed to be a successful web designer.
While the main productivity of your job will depend on your technical skills, soft skills play an important role in day-to-day operations. These are behavioral traits that are inherent to you, making them much more difficult to teach.
So once you know you possess the appropriate characteristics to succeed in web design, you should feel much more comfortable in pursuing the technical education needed.
We spoke with Jacob Gube, a 10-year veteran of web design and development, to get his opinion on some of the basic characteristics needed to be a successful web designer.
In order to determine if you’ve got the natural qualities to shine in the world of web design, let’s examine three simple insights Gube shared with us about what it takes to be a successful web designer beyond the technical know-how.
1. You must be adaptable
In web design, the technical skills required by the market change drastically as the industry evolves, Gube says. Knowing that, he considers it crucial to be able to learn new techniques and adapt them quickly.
“Things in the industry are constantly in flux,” he says. “You’ve got to be comfortable doing things you’ve never done before. I learn something new every day.”
As an answer to the ever-changing nature of the field, Gube founded Six Revisions, a website that uses articles and tutorials to feature cutting-edge trends and current information on the industry of web design and development.
2. You must show passion and perseverance
It seems obvious, but it’s important to enjoy what you’re doing. Gube believes passion and perseverance are essential qualities every web designer should possess.
“If you’re truly passionate,” he says, “the latter will come naturally.”
While it helps to have a natural knack for innovation, Gube says creating good designs can be learned. He believes a bad designer can eventually produce great work as long as they are passionate about improving his or her skills and knowledge.
3. You must be a good all-around communicator
Communication can take different forms, and a web designer should master them all. Verbal communication skills are essential in order to effectively correspond with users, colleagues, bosses, clients and so on.
Not only that, but your design must be able to communicate with its audience as well. In Gube’s opinion, design is fundamentally about communicating a message to people. He says that a successful designer is measured by his or her ability to do exactly that.
“It’s not just about your ability to make things pretty to look at,” Gube says. “It’s about your ability to communicate the message to your audience.”
Hopefully this has given you a better understanding of some of the essential characteristics of a successful web designer. If you see these behaviors in yourself and want to acquire some of the technical skills needed for a career in this field, begin your journey by earning a degree in web design.