Lead Industrial Designer in Brookfield, Wisconsin

Date Posted: 11/15/2020

Job Snapshot

Employee Type: Full-time
Job Type: Product Design
Date Posted: 11/15/2020

Job Description

As a Milwaukee Tool Lead Industrial Designer, you are guiding Industrial Designers to navigate the fuzzy front end. Your creative spirit, excellent communication skills, and leadership expertise will ensure the design team, working in the concept phase, collaboratively delivers innovative solutions consistent with Milwaukee Tool's brand and business strategies. In this role your emphasis is to guide and mentor designers rather than produce designs.

This will include:

  • Coaching designers through Front-end Innovation Concept phase and introducing common vocabulary; preparing and delivering progressive workshops and primers that advance capability, understanding and team dynamics
  • Coordinating and negotiating design resources considering bandwidth, strengths, and growth opportunities of the design team
  • Identifying, engaging, and managing team dynamics when challenges or breakdowns occur; reinforce the importance of learning from challenges and breakdowns as part of growing an advanced innovation culture


  • Bachelor's degree is required. Master's degree preferred. Preferred Fields: Industrial Design, Design Management, or related
  • Minimum 8 years experience working in design related fields. Competent experience in Front End Innovation (FEI) teams
  • Thorough knowledge of user-centered principles, product and service innovation, design and development
  • Detail oriented and ability to work in a fast-paced environment
  • Creative problem-solving skills coupled with a hands-on approach
  • Strong ability to evaluate a project's needs and pair most effective and efficient methodologies to maximize the designer's potential and meet project goals
  • Natural desire to grow and develop designers through active mentorship, going beyond project processes, sharing from personal experiences, and offer advice, as a professional role model
  • Actively challenges behavior paradigms both internally and externally. Errs on the side of risk taking rather than risk mitigation
  • Thrives in ambiguous scenarios in which the correct direction(s) is not yet obvious. Great at gleaning meaning from whatever data is available and acts with limited information or direction
  • Superior communication and presentation skills which are effective and impactful to a range of audiences throughout the organization
  • Skilled at planning & prioritization of tasks for oneself and the project team

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Front-end Design Leadership: Guide and influence teams both in the way of thinking and in the way of working throughout the process of Concept/Front-end Innovation project - from project scoping, problem framing, discovery and ideation, to design development, implementation and learning.
  • Infuse Disruptive Innovation Practice and Methods: Create, socialize, and nurture a toolbox of innovation practices, methods and processes; seamlessly integrate new methodologies and language used by internal teams. Advocate innovation methodologies and the value of our team capability within businesses.
  • Define Completeness: Understand the NPD design process (deliverables, timing, pitfalls) to anticipate where work will go and guide teams to deliver appropriate and effective solutions. Outline expectations and gauge quality of work to ensure output is complete and usable.
  • Team Leadership: Provide thought leadership to the organization including:
    • Sharing constructive feedback to inspire designers to produce great work and ensure they follow through with comprehensive attention to detail
    • Mentoring design team on innovation methods, process, and best practices
    • Training colleagues on standards and techniques
    • Coaching designers to develop and deliver presentations, linking innovation work to user insights, brand stories, and business strategy.
    • Inspire other teams to be experts in their respective roles
    • Discovering and nurturing young talents inside and outside the company
  • Ideation Leadership: Coach and develop resourced designers to plan, lead, facilitate and manage ideation activities/sessions, ensuring sessions are inspiring, engaging, and productive.
  • Build Relationships: Build and manage relationships with internal business teams working with the Design Team in a way that reflects that we are a trusted partner that provides world-class thought leadership
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