Seattle Central design graduate Claire Evans has been working at Rational Interaction since graduating from the program in 2012. With Evans working as Creative Director, Rational is now seeing chart-topping growth in the company. Recent news puts them at #1 for Seattle, woman-led companies. Rational is a full service digital studio, user experience, video production, and technical and consulting company.
According to the article, between 2011 and 2014 Rational Interaction grew more than 600 percent, grew to 80 employees from just 11, and secured nearly $9.4 million in revenue in 2014.
We asked Evans a few questions about her work.
How long have you worked at Rational and what do you think makes Rational stand out?
I have been at Rational now for 3.5 years and am currently a Creative Director. It was my first job out of the SCCA program, and I was hired after meeting one of their designers at the ‘Reality Check’ portfolio review. He asked me to come in and meet the team, which turned out to actually be an interview, and I got a job as an interactive designer. Since it was such a small company at the time (I think I was hire #13?) there was a lot of opportunity to grow, which put me on an accelerated and sometimes overwhelming track. I think that’s part of what makes Rational stand out – the people who succeed there and are super ambitious, hungry, collaborative, and supportive people. Our design team is lean (including myself we have 6 designers) so it’s really necessary to have great communication skills and be willing to jump in and help your teammates when they need it. As a company we are a scrappy bunch but all of our work is really rooted in strategy, so we have built a reputation for delivering really quality work really efficiently. Also it’s just a super fun place to work. Sometimes we have late nights or tight deadlines, but I can truly say I love my coworkers and am inspired and challenged by the work, which is kind of a dreamy combo for me.
What advice do you have for women designers?
As for advice for women designers, I would say just trust your instinct and speak up. As a designer it’s so common to constantly question your work and wonder if it’s good enough, so trusting in your intuition is so important. The more you speak up (and are willing to mess up every once in a while) the more you hone that voice, and then you make better and more educated decisions. I guess that’s more general advice for all designers, but for women I feel like that voice that says ‘your work is shitty’ is a bit louder or harder to overcome sometimes. Also, do your research and pay attention to the details, no matter how minor they must seem. And really the biggest thing of all is don’t be an asshole. Be someone that people like to work with. Be flexible and understanding, patient and helpful, but push back when something doesn’t feel right.
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Congratulations on the success after all of your hard work!