How Designers Drive Startup Weekend

11/04/2014 | By Jeffrey Whissen

This post originally appeared on

The following is a guest blog by @jehnglynn find out more about her at


I heard about Startup Weekend, back in 2012, but had no idea how I, as a designer, even fit into that world. Sure.. every business needs design... but, HOW do I actually fit in? With four weekends under my belt as a participant, mentor, organizer and/or design judge, I wanted to share with you some why designers are important at Startup Weekend.

Why designers are important at Startup Weekend:

- They help elevate an idea. If you can conceptually and visually execute your idea by the end of the weekend, the idea the team is working on will be perceived in a much clearer way.

- You bring more than just design. By being a designer, your task isn't to make functional design that resonates, but to problem solve, project manage and understand users. Your input to the team goes so much further than just sitting behind the computer, executing. Don’t ever be afraid to speak up and be part of the conversation over the weekend! Startup Weekend encourages creativity and fresh ideas! (That is why you are here, right?!)

Why designers should try Startup Weekend:

- It is important to challenge ourselves and to expose ourselves, as designers, to a variety of situations. Being forced to work very quickly and closely with your team over the weekend, will stretch your limitations further than you can imagine.

- It is fun! You get to create something out of nothing, in an almost impossible timeline and the energy and excitement that comes from that fosters motivation and inspiration!

- You can win awesome prizes! As a designer for the weekend, you are eligible to win some pretty sweet prizes, if I do say so myself (I picked them out)! You get a one year subscription to either Photoshop CC or Illustrator CC (your choice), One month to and a dribbble invite!

Don’t forget to sign up today to claim your spot!  Tickets go quick around here… if you are signing up as a designer, use coupon code PDXSW for 20% off.

If you have any questions regarding Startup Weekend, whether it is design related or not, feel free to tweet me @jehnglynn and I will be happy to answer them for you!