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Industrial Design Lead

What Matters Most

  • Outstanding in your field and a degree in Industrial Design
  • 6-7 years minimum of professional experience in Industrial Design
  • Excellent storytelling and narrative skills especially around your craft as well as outstanding communication, presentation, and design team collaboration skills
  • Comfort with guiding clients and teams through a range of projects
  • Comfort with and interest in leading other project team members and representing the Industrial Design discipline within the studio.
  • Experience in designing products or experiences that have both physical and digital components
  • Experience delivering successful projects within the constraints of time, resources, and budget.
  • Ability to generate ideas quickly without a lot of background information or parameters
  • Ability to translate user needs, technical realities, brand attributes and business needs into compelling products
  • Well-developed skills in sketching, quick prototyping, 3D CAD, rendering and presentation software  (Rhino/SolidWorks/Keyshot/Adobe suite or other similar programs)
  • Comfort with advising clients while engaging with key internal stakeholders

You will guide, inspire and move both teams and clients using the craft of Industrial Design. Your creative leadership will be required to help multidisciplinary teams navigate through projects of diverse industries, scale and medium. You will be an advocate of exceptional design across the studio and be a champion for craft in your discipline. You are experienced and passionate about working at the intersection of hardware and software, the tangible and intangible.

Your New Role

An Industrial Design Lead at IDEO Chicago makes the biggest impact by strengthening the Industrial Design point of view at IDEO by guiding and leading multidisciplinary teams through a range of projects. Your skillset is critical to our business because you are able to balance the aspiration of creative teams with the realities of business environments. We count on you to effectively engage teams and activate the best in team members. You will support and lead the creation of intelligent, immersive solutions that may range from products and product ecosystems in the medical field, to opportunities defining the future of transportation. Your original mind, strategic thinking paired with great technical skills and lots of energy, help us push our craft forward. In this role you get exposure to and involvement with many parts of the design process: user research, brainstorm, concept development, prototyping, and design stewardship.

Once here you will

  • Join an interdisciplinary passionate group of people who LOVE what they do
  • Be challenged to think more holistically and expand your view on design
  • Lead multidisciplinary teams
  • Create product strategies rooted in user insights
  • Tinker, explore, make and validate
  • Collaborate with people from different backgrounds such as interaction designers, mechanical engineers, data scientists, business designers, brand specialists, environments designers and design researchers to create comprehensive solutions for our clients
  • Become part of a culture that lets you both learn and teach while working with people outside of your immediate area of expertise

Your New Organization

IDEO is a place unlike any other. It’s a place where you can solve diverse, complex challenges for our clients or the organization, alongside thoughtful, intelligent individuals who lead with curiosity, empathy, and optimism. Sure we work hard, but we also intentionally craft moments that allow our community to pause, create, and connect. We encourage our community to bring their true selves to work, respect the need for work-life balance, and allow for autonomy in the design process and their career.

Commitment to Diversity

At IDEO, we are committed to the work of advancing diversity, equity and inclusion within our organization and in the world. Our purpose of having disproportionate, world-changing impact through design is directly connected to our ability to bring many different perspectives to the table. This applies to our candidates, the people we hire, the clients and customers we serve, and the communities we learn from in our research.

As a human-centered organization, we are committed to working with and designing for people of every race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, socio-economic status, physical ability or attribute, religion, national origin, or political belief. We recognize that this commitment requires ongoing work and sustained attention, as well as adaptation to new insights and best practices.

Application instructions:

To apply, please submit your resume, cover letter, and sample portfolio.

In your portfolio, please show:

  • Strong projects - new products, interesting challenges with unique solutions
  • Design process - research, strategy, concept generation, iterations, etc
  • Experimental work and explorations (we’d love to see what ended on the cutting room floor)
  • Sharing ability to balance client expectations along with design intent


Equal Opportunity Employer

IDEO is an equal opportunity employer; applicants are considered for all roles without regard to race, color, religious creed, sex, national origin, citizenship status, age, physical or mental disability, sexual orientation, marital, parental, veteran or military status, unfavorable military discharge, or any other status protected by applicable federal, state or local law.

Apply now
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