Speaking at Refresh Boston tonight about designing in a recession

The economy is affecting web designers…let’s talk about what to do about it.

Having recently returned from An Event Apart Boston, I have lots of new design ideas to think about and explore. But one idea kept rearing its ugly head in conversation after conversation I had there: the economy.

The economy has reached those of us working on the Web. I think we were insulated for a while, since building software is so important for business these days, even when your business isn’t doing that well. Many people even see building a great interface to their product as a way out of the downturn…if they can provide a fantastic user experience then they can increase market share during the recession and be stronger coming out of it.

Refresh Boston in June, with Joshua Porter at Microsoft Startup Labs (Thursday June 25, 2009) - Upcoming

So over the past few days I’ve been thinking about this a lot, and I started counting all of the conversations I had about how to deal with these tough times. There were a lot! Even well-known web designers with large audiences are feeling a slowdown…and so everyone must be.

In response to this, I’ve changed the topic of the talk I’m giving tonight at Refresh Boston. I was originally going to talk about Designing for Virality, but instead I’m going to talk about ways to cope with the recession if you’re a practicing web designer or someone in a related field. I think this is a very important topic, and while I won’t have all the answers I’m hoping that we can start a discussion in which we can all share what’s been working and what hasn’t so that those who are truly passionate about web design won’t have to worry as much going forward.

Here is my talk description:

Designing in a Recession: How to stand out when many are falling down.

Times are not easy for web designers. Great projects are rare, clients are slower with payments, and project sizes are shrinking. Yes, indeed, the down economy has reached the Web and the professionals who work there.

In this talk Joshua Porter will share tips & hints on how can you stand out when most are falling down. He will talk about his own experiences getting bokardo.com off the ground as well as stories about those who have both had great success and suffered more than they should. You’ll learn tips like how to network even if you’re shy and how to design a solid portfolio. You’ll come away with real-world tactics to get more design work in these trying times.

Here is the upcoming page for tonight’s event. Hope to see you there!

Published: June 25th, 2009