Constructive is a leading social impact strategy and design agency that partners with ambitious organizations to help build a more fair, equitable, and sustainable world. Our culture is built on core values—deeply held beliefs about the importance of integrity, empathy, accountability, trust, teamwork, and respect that add purpose to our lives and can be seen and felt in everything we do.
We’re looking for a seasoned Director of Design to lead our design practice, continue its growth and excellence, and produce astonishing work that creates value for our clients and stands out amongst our peers. And in time, it’s our expectation that our Design Director will grow into being a vital member of our Leadership Team—working closely with our other discipline Directors and company Founder as we shape company direction, practices, and culture. Given this leadership track and the critical nature of this role, it’s vitally important that our new Design Director be someone who is looking to invest long-term in their new role—and be equally invested in by Constructive.
If you’re a passionate and driven design leader who pushes the boundaries of innovation, has a discerning eye for visual fundamentals and details, know how to help other designers achieve new heights, and are eager to grow your business acumen and influence, then please read on.
About the Role
Constructive is a design-forward company, and our Design Director is the strategic and creative leader of our design practice who ensures that we produce work for our clients that’s strategically sound and creatively inspired.
Within Constructive, you’ll shape design ethos and process; inspire, mentor, and support designers to create stand-out work that deliver results; collaborate with our strategy, content, and engineering teams to create purpose-driven brand experiences; and work hands-on designing for select projects that offer significant opportunities for impact.
With our clients, you’ll provide strategic facilitation to align design solutions with their brand priorities; expand their thinking and inspire them with what’s possible; collaboratively design new ways forward; provide consultative guidance and reassurance; and identify new opportunities for us to create value.
Your Core Responsibilities
Here are the primary activities and outcomes that our Design Director is accountable for and by which your success and contributions will be measured.
The Design Director is accountable for the quality of design that our team and contractors produce. You make sure the design we create is polished and fundamentally strong, meets our standards of quality before it is shared with clients—and continuously sets that bar higher.
The Design Director cultivates our design culture. You set the tone for our design practice and build team camaraderie. You’re a mentor who encourages exploration, teaches, and clearly demonstrates what our standard of excellence looks like so that our team knows how to achieve it and is consistently inspired to.
The Design Director leads the strategic design process. You advance best practices, ensure that our work is aligned with strategic goals from the start, ensure that design concepts translate faithfully into cohesive design systems that are efficiently produced, and that design intent carries through in interactive digital products as they’re built.
The Design Director establishes design strategy. You facilitate design strategy dialogues and workshops with clients to verbalize and visualize ideas that are aligned with brand priorities. You carry this strategy through to your team’s execution. And level up your team to provide this same leadership for client projects, as appropriate (while remaining accountable for the client experience).
The Design Director is responsible for leading presentations to persuasively articulate to clients how our work delivers on their strategic goals, encourage feedback, and make them feel listened to when providing it. You identify right-fit opportunities for your team to present their work so that our best ideas advance and the client has a great experience (while remaining accountable).
The Design Director is responsible for our visual brand. You’ll work closely with our Founder to create a vision for our brand that’s aligned with our identity, then ensure that all of our materials, from marketing communications to the documents we produce for clients, are polished and cohesive as different members of our team.
Management & Business Development
The Design Director manages and mentors their team. You conduct regular 1-1s to establish professional development goals, support achieving them, and chart growth paths. You conduct formal reviews for your direct reports and make recommendations to ownership on salary and bonuses.
The Design Director builds our design talent and capacity. You identify design team needs, evaluate and make recommendations for new hires, and cultivate a bench of vetted, trusted design consultants who add capacity and specialized skills as needed.
The Design Director supports design resourcing. You participate in weekly resourcing meetings to help assign your team to projects that are well-suited to their expertise, provide project/team health updates, and ensure that your team is well-utilized.
The Design Director supports Project Managers by understanding project scope and budget, providing feedback as project needs exceed these so that clients can be informed, and communicating on design team performance and progress so that PMs can effectively manage the projects for which they are accountable.
The Design Director helps evaluate and estimate new business. You’ll review RFPs with our Founder, who leads business development, provide clarifying questions, develop estimates with other Directors, and participate in new business meetings and presentations.
The Design Director produces thought leadership. You are the lead voice for our design practice, and we want you to shine. You’ll work with our Lead Content Marketer to produce occasional articles, webinars, and workshops, and, ideally give webinars and presentations.
Skills & Experience You’ll Need
Strong alignment with our core values.
At least 7 years of design experience, ideally in agency settings, working with teams to develop exceptional branding systems and large-scale websites.
An extensive portfolio of exceptional strategic design work spanning branding/design systems and website design (at a minimum).
At least 2 years experience in design leadership and managing the work of other designers, with a consistent track record of successful team delivery.
Strong strategic vision, collaborative leadership capabilities, and the ability to articulate how design solutions execute on a strategy to designers and non-designers alike.
A great sense of what it means to design brands that embody an organization’s positioning and personality and that are effective in delivering on their priorities and KPIs.
An exceptionally strong eye for design that’s both creatively inspired and rooted in the fundamentals of great typography, color systems, grid theory, etc.
The ability to build relationships and grow a strong team, characterized by a collaborative mindset, clear communication and expectation-setting, and the ability to lift up your people—especially when the sledding is tough.
Great presentation and speaking skills—the ability to persuasively articulate ideas without being pushy and solicit/steer client feedback.
An allergic reaction to mediocre work, an unrelenting eye for detail, and an insistence that any work that ships meets our highest ambitions while creating exceptional value for our clients.
Willingness to do whatever’s needed to meet our client commitments and deliver work that we’re proud to put our name on.
Fluency with Creative Suite and Figma.
Nice-to-Haves That Make a Difference
Experience in or a strong desire to do social impact design work.
Expertise with animation and a great sense of how to use animation to create engagement and express emotion.
Experience with UX Design, either in producing yourself or working closely with UX teams who produce complex websites.
An understanding of how digital products get built—specifically, how to design for digital efficiently and in ways that balance innovation and practicality so that engineering teams can execute what we design.
What We Offer
We do our best to make sure everyone at Constructive is taken care of with a great mix of salary, benefits and perks, opportunities for professional growth, and significant time off. We expect this position to have a base salary between $110,000 - $130,000 based on experience and value-added skills. In addition to this salary, we offer defined profit sharing, 401K matching, and discretionary performance-based bonuses.
Compensation & PTO
Defined Annual Profit Sharing Plan
401K With Up to 4% Company Match
Company Sponsored Medical, Dental, and Vision Insurance
Discretionary Performance Bonuses
3 Weeks Paid Vacation (15 days)
Paid Vacation From Christmas Eve through New Year's
Paid 1/2-day Summer Fridays (Approx 16/year)
Unlimited Wellness/Sick Days
New Client Bonuses (3% of First 12 Months of New Work You Proactively Bring In)
Professional Development & Culture
A Values-Aligned Team That Loves Showing Up for Each Other
Leadership Coaching and Mentoring with Constructive’s Leadership Coach
Monthly Virtual Happy Hours & Games
Feeling Great About Your Work Making the World a Better Place
Our Commitment to Diversity & Inclusion
We believe strongly that diversity is one of our greatest strengths—that the more perspectives we bring to the mix, the better we are as people and the better partner we are for our clients. So, in considering if Constructive is a good fit for you, know that all we care about is that you’re qualified to do the job, share our values, and want to be here. These are the things we’ll be evaluating for every applicant. If you meet those and add to our team’s diversity, all the better.