Successful entrepreneur looking for designer sidekick

almost 8 years ago from , Owner

I'm a successful solo bootstrapped entrepreneur, been doing my own thing for 10 years. I'm at the point where I'm travelling the world, working only a few hours per week, only on projects I enjoy working on.

I'm looking for a sidekick to help me with UX/UI/front-end development (remote work). Like I said, I only work on my own projects (usually scratching my own itch, so these tend to be more fun). You take care of designing, enhancing, and implementing my vision, I'll market the hell out of it, and I promise this will be the best freelance work you'll ever do. If things work out, you should end up with freedom to do whatever you want (yes, I know this sounds infomercially (not sure if that's a real word), but it's true).

I'm looking for an experienced designer who can create polished, intuitive user interfaces. I prefer simplicity, usability, and conversion optimization over "design" that just seems cool (scroll-jacking, I'm looking at you!)

In addition to being able to create quick mockups (Sketch App preferred, Photoshop or pencil/paper), I expect you to be able to code the front-end (html/css/javascript) using best practices and keeping browser limitations in mind (but screw older versions of IE, I hate that mother f'er). Frameworks like Bootstrap or Foundation are OK, but you shouldn't have to rely on those.

I'm not looking for beginners/intermediates please (or those who think they're good when they're really not - I guess I can't stop you guys from responding). I'm not looking for the cheapest work, I want things done right, with good clean design and best-practices. I know the value of a good designer, I'm willing to pay the price. At the same time, I don't want someone with a huge ego. Be open to learning, especially about marketing and growth - see this as an apprenticeship opportunity in entrepreneurship. I expect to learn from you as well.

But most importantly, take pride in your craft for god's sake! If you're not up for learning new things, challenging yourself, and doing the work to become a better person, don't reply.

No matter where you are in your career, if I think you're great, I'll work around your schedule. We can start off moonlighting, weekends, or whatever works for you. I don't have strict deadlines, just want to find the best person right now.

About me, I'm easy and fun to work with, and can offer you awesome opportunities as we build a trusting relationship.

As a first test project, we're going to redesign a neglected (yet cult-like-following site): http://www.exoticspotter.com (see, I told you fun projects)

Tell me why you'd be a great fit for this, with a couple of examples of your BEST work (I don't want to look through tons of links, please filter out the best stuff for me - and tell me why you think it's your best work).

I'll pick a handful of you to do a small test project (it takes about 3 hours, but you will be paid for your time).

Let's do this! Get off your butts and send me an email at exoticspotter@gmail.com


  • Wes OudshoornWes Oudshoorn, almost 8 years ago

    I think this is an excellent post, honest and to the point. I do not agree with some of the criticism here about this being almost parody. The design community needs to get off their fucking high horse and not expect the whole world to worship our special skills. Yes, we have the opportunity to help people do great stuff, and we can be of immense value. Yes, some people are idiots who want us to work for free. But no, we don't have to dictate how people should "approach" us properly and act like total assholes.

    Why I like this post:

    • Making money with (side) projects is freakin' hard to do.
    • This man has fucking done it. More than 90% of us could probably say.
    • Yes, exoticcars looks kinda funky. But there's 87 people viewing it and about 10 members online. Maybe this person is making a 1000 bucks a month for years while people are looking at cars online, while we're whining about bugs in Sketch.
    • This person seems to know more about the tools / work we do than most of my previous clients.
    40 points
    • Eric Foster, almost 8 years ago (edited almost 8 years ago )

      While I'm skeptical of anyone who claims to be a success without the evidence to back it up, I agree that the level of hubris and indignation in some of these replies is shameful, and agree with your post in general. The egos of some people are astounding.

      8 points
    • G F, almost 8 years ago


      I guess I can see how my post may come off as "jack-assy". The problem is a lot of "business/idea guys" are BS and you need to be skeptical about working with them, so can't blame these guys.

      I'm just throwing the opportunity out there and seeing what happens. You gotta test stuff out, and even though a lot people commented this is the wrong way to approach it, I've already received a ton of great responses via email, so I'm happy with the outcome so far.

      Anyway, I commend you for stating your honest (although unpopular) opinion.

      3 points
      • Wes OudshoornWes Oudshoorn, almost 8 years ago

        I believe that if we start with assuming good intentions instead of expecting the worst, we'll find a lot more good in our industry.

        0 points
  • John PJohn P, almost 8 years ago (edited almost 8 years ago )

    "Idea guy looking for someone with actual talent to do the actual work"


    40 points
    • G F, almost 8 years ago

      Honest question: Why is it wrong that I'm looking for someone with talent to do work? Did I say I wanted work done for free? No - in fact I said that I value good design and am willing to pay for it. I'm well aware that good designers don't come cheap.

      Sorry I rubbed some of you the wrong way. Even though half of you think this was a joke, I got some incredible responses from talented designers who saw this as what it is - an interesting opportunity.

      10 points
  • Edwin de JonghEdwin de Jongh, almost 8 years ago

    Oh man, this is so the wrong way to approach good designers.

    17 points
    • Daniel GoldenDaniel Golden, almost 8 years ago

      Right. Your comment is true, and well said, though I think it would be great for us to offer up the best way to approach designers. I think it's understandable that he's unfamiliar with how to reach out solid designers effectively. I for one, being a designer and recognizing that this is the wrong way, do not know what the right way is.

      9 points
      • Edwin de JonghEdwin de Jongh, almost 8 years ago

        Fair point. I think for starters it wouldn't hurt to be more humble and don't call potential partners 'sidekicks'. No one likes to be treated like lesser than, especially not when it comes to these 'idea-guys'. There's a lot more to be said, but there's plenty of really good books and articles on approaching and working with designers, so I'd suggest G F start there.

        5 points
  • Brennan Smith, almost 8 years ago

    This is exactly what happens when you open DN to the public. I personally would like to see the invite system back in place.

    16 points
  • Joey GrilloJoey Grillo, almost 8 years ago


    14 points
  • Connor Tomas O'BrienConnor Tomas O'Brien, almost 8 years ago

    GF, this doesn't necessarily seem like a terrible offer, but what I will say is this: look at the top of this site – there's a tab marked 'Jobs'. It costs $249 to advertise for 30 days. If you're looking for a high-quality designer and you claim that you'll be offering fair compensation for the work, you need to start out by approaching professional designers in a professional way. If you don't think it's worth paying $249 to attract the right talent (or advertising on another service), it seems unlikely you're going to be attracting designers at the level you're hoping for.

    12 points
    • G F, almost 8 years ago

      Fair point. The thing is, I'm not really looking for someone who's looking for a "job", but the job boards are definitely worth testing out.

      3 points
  • James Young, almost 8 years ago

    Wow, some designers here sound like their sense of entitlement is off the charts.

    OP has offered a flexible work schedule, attractive sounding potential projects and to pay a suitable amount of money for the right person but is being told to get lost.


    11 points
  • Michael AfonsoMichael Afonso, almost 8 years ago

    This post is pretty laughable.

    11 points
    • Ian DonahueIan Donahue, almost 8 years ago

      I thought it was a joke. I still think it might be satire. But if its not, I'm more interested in finding out more about the author.

      0 points
  • Jamie MartinJamie Martin, almost 8 years ago

    With all due respect, who are you and why should a potential designer care?

    What kind of equity would this person have? What have you founded in the past? What kind of exits have you had, etc.

    10 points
    • Jordan BrewerJordan Brewer, almost 8 years ago

      Thank you

      0 points
    • G F, almost 8 years ago

      I think you're misunderstanding the post. I'm not looking to give equity in exchange for work. I'm looking to pay, and pay top-dollar to work with the right designer. I would never expect a talented designer to work for equity - especially with a stranger.

      Once a designer starts working with me, and sees that I'm legit, and wants to work with me on an equity basis, then we can look into that. But that will all come naturally through a trusting relationship built over the long-term.

      2 points
      • Josh Aronoff, almost 8 years ago

        Seems suspect. I have 12 years of experience doing UI and UX work, and you don't seem to be able to be upfront. Lay all your cards on the table. If equity is something someone wants, I wouldn't dismiss it.

        Like you said, if you're legit, you want your idea made no matter what.

        Go all in. Don't do a dance. UI and UX is extremely saturated and competitive as hell right now. You're going to have to be more up front with us.

        2 points
  • Rafa Camargo, almost 8 years ago

    Can I choose one of the cars as payment?

    6 points
  • Joey GrilloJoey Grillo, almost 8 years ago

    The best part about this whole post is his amazing lack of awareness around the environment he is trying to exist in. Where is the portion about the extensive development work you are going to need in order to make your site not look, work, and run like its 1999. Is that covered in:

    " I expect you to be able to code the front-end (html/css/javascript) using best practices and keeping browser limitations in mind (but screw older versions of IE, I hate that mother f'er)"

    The level of ignorance in this post is just mind-blowing.

    5 points
  • Oscar WaczynskiOscar Waczynski, almost 8 years ago

    Okay... So let's examine for a moment your post.

    Aside from the basic premise of wanting a design monkey(your vision, your sidekick), you also want them to redesign YOUR website, for free, as a design exercise.

    So... Good luck with finding a senior designer who's willing to do that.

    5 points
  • Csongor BartusCsongor Bartus, almost 8 years ago

    Hey G F you've tapped the spirit of DN with a single hit.

    Don't worry there are plenty listening and valuing freedom.

    Better check your inbox :)

    2 points
  • Beth RBeth R, almost 8 years ago

    You don't even use your real name! What does G.F. stand for?

    2 points
  • Beth RBeth R, almost 8 years ago (edited almost 8 years ago )

    Just to set the record straight. My problem with this offer was that there was no way for me to look into "GF". There are job scammers all over the place and when a supposedly reputable company offers you a chance at a job, they have an email address that corresponds with their website/company.

    Just Google How to spot a fake job

    If you click on the first hit, the third rule is

    Free email accounts. Any recruiter or company that corresponds from a free email account such as Yahoo, Live, Hotmail or Gmail is very likely a scammer. Legitimate job related emails will come from corporate email accounts.

    Anyone can pose as another person. The people on here who aren't a fan of this kind of approach are simply being cautious.

    Any well-known author/entrepreneur would most definitely state his whole name, companies he has worked for and links to said companies. IMO

    1 point
  • Santiago BaigorriaSantiago Baigorria, almost 8 years ago

    You're all being to hard on G F people. This is thinking out of the box. Many people here should learn a bit from these guys that every once in a while break the rules while hurting nobody.

    I don't dislike the approach G F. As a matter of fact, I've sent you an email.

    1 point
  • Yasen DimovYasen Dimov, almost 8 years ago

    I'm confused by the comments.. will read later...

    1 point
  • Josh LeeJosh Lee, almost 8 years ago (edited almost 8 years ago )

    We should have Ivo do an AMA about his time working for him. https://dribbble.com/shots/1158721-Car-Incentives-Landing-pagehttps://twitter.com/greggfidan/status/357930435147345921

    1 point
  • Craig Garner, almost 8 years ago

    But most importantly, take pride in your craft for god's sake!

    This line comes across as an attack on the reader and assumes they don't already take pride in their own work, like they need to be commanded to do so.

    What a shocker...

    1 point
  • Jon FarrellJon Farrell, almost 8 years ago


    1 point
  • Kelvin GomesKelvin Gomes, almost 8 years ago

    This made my idea, literally!

    0 points
  • manoor ansari, almost 8 years ago

    off-camera here a little billion chest stretch get packed bid pack stretch K to the next one people okay you're going to do you right now because we again with to be rock home gym fitness channel all about Super sending get those big giant cesarean hop in here and I we're going to knock o ff Buchwald maybe ...pre workout v3


    0 points
  • Robin RaszkaRobin Raszka, almost 8 years ago


    0 points
  • Ryan -Ryan -, almost 8 years ago

    Haha, I get it

    0 points
  • Mariz Melo, almost 8 years ago

    Donald (Trump) ? is that you?

    0 points
  • Account deleted almost 8 years ago


    0 points