How can an MFA,MBA with Project Managment exp. get into ID

I am a Canadian with an MBA from McGill U. (Montreal) and am finishing off an MFA. Also, I have project management experience gleaned from junior-middle-senior positions in various private sector corps, federal gov’t and international and domestic NGOs. A PhD is a possibility, but have had enough time away from the working world and want to get back into the game. This round would be working with private corp over the long-term designing products around the sustainable energy sector on the pacific coast.

My unique skills and experience across sectors and cultures are a little hard to place in a box so most job descriptions don’t work for me.

At this point I would like to just get some work experience (and cashflow - am a new Dad :slight_smile: ) before doing any more formal education in ID. I have no ID experience at this but am able to work to manage creative teams that include engineers and scientists.

Any thoughts on how to go about developing the network/experience in ID needed to open up a few opportunities

That’s a pretty tough question, expect to see a lot of people here tell you not to bother and to continue down the PM path, especially if you’re a new Dad :slight_smile:. My advice would be to compromise, pursue a PM position where you get very involved with the ID process and learn as much as you possibly can from your designers. It’s a good way to find out if you REALLY want to jump into ID, but you’ll also have access to design tools and techniques that many schools won’t offer you. Don’t forget that artistic/creative talent account for alot of being successful in ID, if you don’t innately possess those things and aren’t willing/able to hone them from what you learn from such a position, then you’re looking at a 4 year degree, possibly a 2 year masters instead. Without a design degree it will be tough for a hiring manager to take you seriously unless you have an amazing portfolio/resume, and that would be for an entry to mid level design position if you have no experience, which doesn’t sound like it could compare salary-wise to your past experience.

listen to Greenman.

I deal with various types of NPI project managers as a senior designer and i basically have anywhere from two to six bosses depending on how many projects i have on my plate. (and that’s besides my group director, in a core team system) all the PM’s i work with think they are designers or design directors and most are oblivious that they are micro managers.

That’s what project managers are supposed to do. that means that by default they will have a hand in the design process if they are to ensure the success of the project. Every PM uses a certain style of management and every PM ends up infusing a little of that personal style in to the project. It’s how things get done in my company.

Unless there is a design director or a very involved marketing component, and/or the design team is separate from the core team with it’s own objectives, the PM will eventually have an effect on the final design direction.

PM is a higher pay bracket, and with a focus on ID you could look towards studio management or group management.