I wrote a tweet today, this one, as a matter of fact:
Some were wondering why I felt that way and while I did want to respond via Twitter I feel as though I would be able to accurately sum up my feelings in a post. So, here goes.
I hate the idea of a potential employer asking me for my Dribbble profile. I long for the days when all you had to rely on was your portfolio be it print or interactive. Dribbble, at it’s core, is a place to show off “what you’ve been working on.” It’s no big secret that some people pride themselves for being drafted (or buying an invite) and that there are elitist designers who think their shit doesn’t stink. I get it. To be on Dribbble is like being able to eat at the cool kids’ table during lunch.
But what does that have to do with hiring me?
When an employer asks for a Dribbble profile I can’t help but cringe. One, that employer is already alienating possible candidates because there are a lot of designers who don’t have a Dribble profile and a lot who don’t even care to have one. Two, some designers will upload fun and experimental things they’ve been working on – not necessarily things they’d like to include in their professional portfolios. Three, Dribbble is not a professional portfolio. However, there are designers out there who do use their Dribbble profiles as their portfolio for whatever reasons.
Employers will continue to hire solely on Dribbble profiles when they don’t understand design. They understand that Dribbble is in the “in” thing and believe “only the best of the best are on there.” Why not ask for their Behance portfolio? Their Krop portfolio? Their Coroflot portfolio? Their portfolio? Must be because there is no invite-system so it’s not worth it.
I don’t know if I can roll my eyes any harder if I tried.
The bottom line is that designers have so much more to offer than just their Dribbble and we need to remind everyone of that. Ask for it as a supplement (if they have one) to their portfolio. Don’t make it the be-all end-all for hiring. That being said, designers, if a company is asking for your Dribbble profile and your Dribbble profile only, walk away.
Disclaimer: While this does sound like a rant from someone who doesn’t have a Dribbble profile, I do have one. As an interaction designer Dribbble does me no justice in displaying my interactive work and as an illustrator I am much more than the dinosaur ass I have posted. I do link my Dribbble on my portfolio page but that’s only because I don’t mind people seeing my off-the-wall designs. I don’t, however, want to be judged solely on it.