How To Be a Successful Web Designer
Recently a college student asked me for an interview for a school assignment. I felt like it would also make for a good blog post titled, How To Be a Successful Web Designer. If there is anything that you’d like to add, feel free in the comments below.
- What is your job title and what is the name of the company/organization?
I am a self-employed web designer. My legal business name is Garry Conn Sales.
- What are your responsibilities?
I am responsible for listening to and understanding what customers want their future or current website to look like and then executing what they vision onto the web.
- How long have you been doing this job?
I have been web designer for ten years.
- Briefly, can you let me know how you got to where you are today?
Ten years ago, my father had an idea for a web based business selling aircraft. He needed someone to help him build the website and asked me if I had an interest in learning how. I was interested in learning and taught myself how to do it by reading book and various tutorials on the web.
- What is a typical day like?
A typical day consists of me spending about half an hour checking email. I reply to any new clients or leads generated via the web. From there I spend three and a half hours working on client websites. I then break for lunch and return to check email for about half an hour. The next two hours I work on marketing and promoting my business, in addition to soliciting new business on social networking sites such as FaceBook and Twitter. The end of the day typically includes writing and publishing a helpful article on my company blog. My company blog draws in business from search engines and by the readers who refer their friends and family.
- What skills are required for your job?
In order to be a successful self-employed web designer, you need to be an excellent listener and interpreter of what customers need. From there you need to have the skills to take the customers vision and develop it into a website. The programming skills necessary to be a web designer include: HTML, CSS, PHP, MySql, and Perl. As the web continues to develop, understanding additional programming languages are recommended. Many social networks and search engines have open source API, which allow anyone access into their system architectural backbone. Quite honestly, the more you know, the more you’re able to help your customer.
- What activities do you enjoy doing the most? What are 3 things that you enjoy most about working at your company/organization?
The three things I enjoy most about my career are being able to convert ideas into something live on the web. I enjoy the personal reward. I enjoy the compensation.
- What is the greatest challenge of this job? What are the 3 most challenging aspects of working at your company/organization?
The three greatest challenges of my career are keeping up with the speed of the web and other online companies, keeping up with my continued programming education, and managing my time and keeping customers happy by delivering on time.
- What skills are the most important for you to learn to be successful in this career?
Anyone can be a programmer. Anyone can learn the programming languages needed to be a web designer. The most important element that allows me to be a successful web designer is creativity.
- If I wanted to start in this career area, how would you recommend that I go about it?
The best thing to do is to go to college. However, many people can not afford to go to school. In fact, many people seek web design careers because they need to work from home. If college isn’t an option then I recommend purchasing books at the store. Also, if you can’t afford books, endless information is available on the web. Once you have learned the programming languages, you need to work on promoting your business. Once again, I use the web for this. I use social networks, my blog, and the people who read my blog to gain business.
- What advice would you give to me in regard to my career direction? Or, if you had a chance to do it all over again, what would you have done differently?
I am unsure of what your career direction is. I can say that if I had the chance to start over with my career, the only thing I would do would be to invest more time learning in advanced rather than learning on the spot.