Born in Turkey and educated in the UK, Irmak Nur Sunal Lutkin is currently based in London, serving as Director of Digital Design at Reuters. She looks after a design team that contributes across Reuters News products and services.
Previously she has worked with Atlantic Records, Sony Music, Puma, Adidas, CNN International, The Wall Street Journal, and XOXO Magazine. She cultivated more than 10 years of experience and insights in the design industry across the worlds of branded content, editorial publishing, news, and high-end digital, UX, UI, and print design.
We talked about her journey – from struggling to find internships to being a design director at one of the largest media companies in the world. We spoke about how her work has evolved at a hands-on level, as she progressed from junior to director level, with the the methodologies and know-how that she’s been deploying. For the benefit of our student audience, we talked about how to get hired as a designer, as well as her approach to hiring and team-buildling.
This has been a rare and insightful look inside the head of a senior design leader, bringing value to all of us navigating design careers.
:: Related Links
+ ADPList: https://www.adplist.org/
+ Atlantic Records: https://www.atlanticrecords.com/
+ CNN International: https://edition.cnn.com/
+ Loughborough University School of Design and Creative Arts: https://www.lboro.ac.uk/schools/design-creative-arts/
+ Parallax Scrolling on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parallax_scrolling
+ Reuters: https://reuters.com/
+ Sony Music: https://www.sonymusic.com/
+ Sprint by Jake Knapp: https://geni.us/sprint-dd
+ Strategy and Tactics in Design on Design Disciplin: https://www.designdisciplin.com/strategy-and-tactics-in-design/
+ The Story of Design Thinking on Design Disciplin: https://www.designdisciplin.com/the-story-of-design-thinking/
+ The Wall Street Journal: https://www.wsj.com/
:: Connect with Design Disciplin
+ Website: http://designdisciplin.com
+ Podcast: http://podcast.designdisciplin.com
+ Instagram: http://instagram.com/designdisciplin/
+ Twitter: http://twitter.com/designdisciplin/
+ YouTube: http://youtube.com/designdisciplin
+ Bookstore: http://designdisciplin.com/bookstore
:: Connect with Irmak
+ LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/irmaknursunal/
:: Episode Bookmarks
04:10 Irmak's story: from struggling intern to director of design
13:32 What does a design director do?
19:16 Irmak's design approach, working with developers
22:22 Should designers code HTML?
24:49 Irmak's approach to hiring
28:10 Irmak's advice to herself in the past: "Find mentors"
30:51 Freelancing vs. employment
32:47 What do UX designers and researchers contribute?
34:42 How to procure UX insights: research vs. best practices
36:36 Individuals' responsibilities and divisions of labor in design teams
39:53 The power of being nice and finding the right culture
44:52 Self-promotion and finding role models as a woman