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Design Director

Animal Adventure k

Saint Paul, MN

Nov 1
Job Description

Responsibilities:

Research, Trend & Insights
• Gather & synthesize market, trend, and consumer data to develop clear and actionable creative direction for project and brand specific initiatives
• Develop and conduct direct-to-consumer surveys for strategic design initiatives & product feedback leveraging 1Q’s consumer market research platform
• Assist VP of Design & Marketing on conducting market shops and creation of bi-annual trend report
Innovation & New Product Development
• Leverage research, trend, and insights to determine innovation opportunities in material, construction, technique, and format
• Assist VP of Design & Marketing on innovation & defining whitespace opportunities
• Partner with Product Development on innovation sourcing requests in relation to construction, material, technique, etc.
• Champion innovation process on the design team
Creative Process
• Oversee the creation of products by the internal design team and external freelance partners
• Review work, troubleshoot and provide feedback to design team members
• Manage creative workflow & ensure deliverables meet assigned timelines and strategic creative vision
Cross Functional Collaboration
• Partner with Director of Marketing and VP of Design & Marketing to align on creative outlook for key projects and brands; oversee partnership between Marketing and Design teams during development process to ensure execution of a cohesive creative vision
• Partner with Asst. Director of Product Development on high level development process feedback, including sampling, factory feedback, new sourcing requests, revisions, etc.
• Report progress of projects at major stages of their conception, creation, and execution
• Ensure internal presentations of art concepts & supporting trends are prepared and delivered to key internal stakeholders on time
Team Development
• Mentor and encourage Design team members to foster a dynamic and positive work environment
• Mentor and coach Design team to understand Creative Strategy and Merchandising Vision
• Coach effective communication across the creative cross functional team; prepare team members to effectively present a creative vision for their designs for internal stakeholder reviews; Designers should be coached to communicate their trend research, creative brainstorming & ideation
• Successfully grow the proficiency and accountability of the Design team to independently manage design projects

About You:
• 8+ years experience in product design, creative direction; minimum 4-year college degree
• Proven track record of a strong ability to conceptualize design across multiple product categories
• Deep understanding of the Kids market, competitive landscape, and design trends; Home market experience is a plus
• A strong eye for aesthetic; demonstrates ability to recognize trends, understand the consumer and act as a design visionary
• Proven creative problem solver with the ability to drive and manage large-scale product design & development programs
• Intense curiosity and passion to explore new formats, techniques and approaches to product development and brand aesthetics
• Experience presenting creative direction and design concepts to clients and team members in a compelling and energetic way
• You have a positive energy and “can-do” attitude
• You enjoy working with people & they enjoy working with you. You’re empathetic in your approach to people and problems
• Adobe Creative Suite, Microsoft Office

Animal Adventure

At Animal Adventure, we believe there are no compromises when it comes to kids and the soft goods they cherish. This is why each plush piece we create is stitched and stuffed with care, assuring the utmost softness, safety and quality.

We Believe In
Curiosity
Constantly curious, our team delights in the little things that please little ones.

Innovation
We aim to be great and to craft exceptional, innovative and undeniably soft products that kids will love and parents will trust.

Moments
The moments that matter in a child’s life are the moments we are proud to create.

Our purpose is our passion. We aim to ignite imagination and spread joy into the hearts and homes of little ones all over the world through our irresistibly soft and timelessly adorable plush designs.

Animal Adventure is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer and we pride ourselves on hiring and developing the best people. All employment decisions (including recruitment, hiring, promotion, compensation, transfer, training, discipline and termination) are based on the applicant's or employee's qualifications as they relate to the requirements of the position under the consideration. These decisions are made without regard to age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic characteristics, race, color, creed, religion, ethnicity, national origin, alienage, citizenship, disability, marital status, military status, pregnancy, or any other legally-recognized protected basis prohibited by applicable law.