On Deck Design

Learn, connect, and level up with the best designers in tech

On Deck Design (ODD) is a continuous community for experienced designers who want to accelerate their careers and become confident leaders through professional development and access to a trusted network of peers.

apply Today

Watch the recording of our recent Q&A session

Apply by August 20th to join the next onboarding kicking off in early September.

JOIN FELLOWS WORKING AT
Shopify
Google logo

Join a curated community of design professionals

Our members are senior ICs, managers, and design leads working at high-impact companies who can support you throughout your journey. They come from diverse backgrounds, roles, and they all share a strong spirit of service.

Gordon Ching
Gordon Ching
Product Design Lead
James McNab
James McNab
Product Design Lead
Julie Lungaro
Julie Lungaro
Manager, Design Ops
James Butler
James Butler
Staff Designer
Yang You
Yang You
Lead Product Designer
Kirsten Disse
Kirsten Disse
Principal Product Designer
Chuba Ezekwesili
Chuba Ezekwesili
Design Partner
Risa Hiyama
Risa Hiyama
Product Designer
Olga Mishyna
Olga Mishyna
Director of Product Design

Join a community to support you whenever you need

Enjoy ongoing access to a curated community of world-class leaders to help find solutions to your everyday professional challenges

Make meaningful connections with peers, mentors, and collaborators

Build long-lasting relationships with peers for support and accountability through curated connections. Or search the Directory to find and connect with other members.

Have a little fun, too

Meet other members and form new connections in low pressure, fun social events and community mixers.

Here’s what other Fellows have been saying about their ODD experience

Chaitanya Mendu
Chaitanya Mendu
Product Designer, Gem
ODF4

ODD is a community with a diverse background and a growth mindset. People come together to uplift each other with knowledge and experiences that impact personal and professional lives.

Christopher Holm-Hansen
Christopher Holm-Hansen
Co-Founder and CPO, Butter
ODF4

ODD is a high-octane and intense design experience with an incredibly high level of quality of both speakers, fellows and On Deck staff.

Hakeeb Bashorun
Hakeeb Bashorun
Design Lead, Yela
ODF4

ODD helped give me clarity on my design career path. It helped me discover my unknown unknowns, skills and ideas from the design community that I did not even know existed for me to learn and master.

Memie Huang
Memie Huang
Staff Product Designer, Quizlet
ODF4

ODD connects you to a much wider community of designers than I couldn't have imagined building on my own. The program brings designers from all backgrounds to share their wealth of knowledge in a more intimate setting.

Tim Hendriks
Tim Hendriks
Founding Designer, Vinebase
ODF4

ODD is an energetic, generous, intense melting pot of highly ambitious designers looking for their next steps. It’s like having your own design safe space outside of your company.

Meesh Lin
Meesh Lin
Product Designer, Okta
ODF4

ODD brings together the most talented, driven, and authentic designers in the world—for deep, candid, and long-lasting connections.

Join specialized tracks led by the best in the industry

Level up your knowledge, skills and confidence as a design leader through education modules focused on specific outcomes taught by seasoned industry executives.

Design Management

A deep dive into the fundamentals of design management. Understand what it takes to become a great design manager and meaningfully impact your team and the business.
  • Operating your team
  • Defining strategy
  • Performance management
  • Recruiting & hiring
  • Building your management portfolio
  • Gain confidence in salary and equity negotiation
Kicking off September 2022
Apply Today

First Designer

Whether you're a co-founder or an early hire, this track helps you understand what it takes to navigate the challenges of being the first designer at a startup: how to balance IC vs strategic work, and all the things in between, while building the design practice from the ground up and how it evolves as the startup scales.
  • Operating your team
  • Defining strategy
  • Performance management
  • Recruiting & hiring
  • Building your management portfolio
Kicking off September 2022
Apply Today

Beyond Senior Designer

Helping senior designers grow in their path as an individual contributor role. Understand what skills are necessary, influencing without directly managing, and delivering impact by doing in order to grow into a staff or principal designer.
  • Building up your specialty skills
  • Leadership without direct management
  • Strategic communication
  • Mentoring other designers
Kicking off September 2022
Apply Today
Here's what you can expect by attending specialized tracks:
Become more competent through continuous professional development
Create and communicate positive impact across your organization
Build your career toolkit and master valuable and actionable skills

On Deck Design Forum

A highly curated safe space for new and experienced design executives (VP+ level) to grow and solve complex leadership challenges, together. Sound exciting? Indicate your interest today.
Thank you. Your submission has been received.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Continuously level up and gain confidence with weekly Learning Sessions

Acquire specialized frameworks, knowledge and skills to become a confident design leader via live sessions and fireside chats with incredible guests and an extensive library of content.

Practical learning opportunities

Regularly expand and refresh your knowledge on variety of in-demand and relevant industry topics that you can apply immediately to your job

High signal sessions with industry’s best

Join intimate deep dives and fireside sessions with top guests like David Hoang, Wendy Johansson & Hareem Mannan

Ever-growing library of content

Enjoy ongoing access to a database of recorded sessions so you can learn on your own schedule
Apply Today
Slack AMA
Jared Erondu
VP of Design
,
Lattice
Building foundational support for your team to enable scaling
Wendy Johansson
Founder & Chief Product Officer
,
MiSalud
Why narratives are core to building human-centric brands
James Vincent
Founder & CEO
,
FNDR
From IC to Manager
David Hoang
Head of Product Design
,
Webflow
Culture of Safety
Alla Weinberg
CEO
,
Spoke & Wheel
How diverse teams shape a rethinking of your work conditions
Cat Noone
CEO
,
Stark
Session

How to Run Effective 1:1s As a Design Manager

Thank you! You will receive a link to the video in your email!
Please confirm your subscription to make sure you are added to the list.
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
As part of her series on "Operating your team", Hareem provides a framework of how to approach 1:1s as a Design Manager, and insights into thoughts, feelings, fears, and triumphs that can be discussed and addressed during these 1:1s.
Hareem Mannan, VP of Product & Design at Pave

Hareem
Mannan

VP of Product & Design
Join the Session

Everything you need to accelerate your career, for years to come

On Deck Design is a life-long, invite-only community with an immersive onboarding to help you build lasting relationships from Day 1.
Application Process
Fill out the application form to be considered for the ODD Membership.
We review each application, putting special emphasis on our core values
Successful candidates will be invited to an interview with the On Deck Design team.
Onboarding
Welcome aboard! The onboarding is an opportunity to get immersed into the community and learn how to navigate On Deck to achieve your goals for the years ahead!
Attend kick-off and orientation sessions
Meet up with your curated connections
Select a Track based on your career stage and specific outcomes
Join community mixers and build connections with your design tribe

Lifelong Community

The onboarding was just the beginning! Once complete, you can officially start benefiting from ongoing access to everything your ODD membership has to offer
Education tracks designed and led by leaders you know and respect
Signature sessions with world-class speakers
Access to the On Deck Directory
Social events
Small group and 1:1 coaching
Curated connections with other members
Mastermind sessions with trusted peers
Opportunity to explore other options within the On Deck ecosystem

Apply to On Deck Design

Access to ODD is $4,990/year. If accepted, we’ll work with you to help expense through L&D.
Payment plans available.
Apply Today

Apply by August 20th to join the next onboarding kicking off in early September.

JOIN FELLOWS WORKING AT
Shopify
Google logo

Designed and led by top executives

The team behind ODD has a unique experience mix of design leadership, operations, education and community design having worked at a range of organizations from InVision and Amazon to Webflow, lululemon, Twillio and Coursera.
Mindaugas
Petrutis
Program Director
Hayley
Wade
Program Manager
Sierra
Ching
Program Associate
Ashna
Mahtani
Program Associate
David
Hoang
Program Partner - Head of Product Design at Webflow
Wendy
Johansson
Program Partner - Founder + Chief Product Experience Officer @ MiSalud
Hareem
Mannan
Program Partner - VP of Product & Design @ Pave
Chetana
Deorah
Program Partner - Director of Product Design @ Coursera

What does a typical month at ODD look like?

Programming for ODD is 2-5 hours per week. You can dive into everything, or take a step back when you’re too busy. The community will be there for you.

ODD Calendar

mon
4
9AM PT
Q&A with a high-profile guest
Star icon
Signature Session
tue
5
Grayed out area
wed
6
9AM PT
Operating Procedures
Workshop
thur
7
Grayed out area
fri
8
8AM PT
Social event
An icon showing connection
Peer to Peer
mon
11
Grayed out area
Tue
12
8PM PT
1:1 with another Fellow
An icon showing two persons
Curated Connection
Wed
13
10AM PT
Mastermind Session
An icon showing connection
Peer to Peer
Thu
14
Grayed out area
fri
15
9AM PT
Effective 1:1s
Workshop
mon
18
Grayed out area
tue
19
Grayed out area
wed
20
Grayed out area
thu
21
9AM PT
Running Great Critiques Workshop
Workshop
fri
22
8AM PT
Social event
An icon showing connection
Peer to Peer
mon
25
9AM PT
Q&A with a high-profile guest
Star icon
Signature Session
Tue
26
8PM PT
1:1 with another Fellow
An icon showing two persons
Curated Connection
wed
27
10AM PT
Mastermind Session
An icon showing connection
Peer to Peer
thu
28
Grayed out area
fri
29
9AM PT
Organizational Design
Workshop

On Deck Journal

Read stories from our team
Jul
21

How to Go from Designer to Manager

Being a design manager is different than being an individual designer. It means balancing different roles, while focusing on unlocking and supporting the best work from the design team rather than your own contributions. This article covers everything you need to know if you’re considering making the switch, including:

  • Whether it’s the right career path for you
  • The 3 big roles of every design manager
  • Rebuttals to common myths and misconceptions
  • How to gain the skills & make the case to become a manager
David Hoang
20
 min read
Read The Full Guide
Case Study

How On Deck Leveled Me Up as a Design Leader

Gordon Ching began his career in marketing, but at a new company he pivoted to product design as an individual contributor and then became design lead within a year. He joined the On Deck Design Fellowship to help him get up to speed on design leadership and establish connections with fellows tackling the same issues as he is in his new role. On Deck proved to be a game-changer. Here’s his story:

Read The Case Study

Ready to apply?

ODD Membership is $4,990/year. If accepted, we’ll work with you to help expense through L&D. Payment plans available.
Apply Today

Apply by August 20th to join the next onboarding kicking off in early September.

FAQ

Who should apply?

Since there are 3 career tracks now available, to be a good fit for ODD, you are probably:

  • Recently moved into management or actively exploring a path to Design Management (senior and above designers, new Design Managers or experienced managers looking to amplify their impact as people leaders.)
  • A Senior, Lead, Principal or Staff level designer. You are exploring a path to management & leadership, and looking for a safe space to do so.
  • First Designer at a startup or exploring this as a career path.
  • A senior designer or manager/leader exploring the Senior IC path (Staff/Principal)
  • Eager to be an active participant and contributor in a growing community, as much of the value of On Deck comes from the network and peer-to-peer connections.
  • Excited about the opportunity to collaborate with other fellowships like founders, no-code, climate tech, writers and others.
  • The community is not exclusively for people managers and leaders, our members are also first designers at early-stage companies, staff, principal and lead level designers.
  • It is a highly curated group of some of the most talented and giving people from all parts of the design community coming together to meet, learn from, and work alongside each other. We want and will proactively build this community to be diverse across race/ethnicity, gender, sexuality, national origin, professional background, age, viewpoint, subject matter expertise, and more.


What does it cost?

ODD is an annual membership that costs $4990/year. After acceptance, we’ll work with your team to expense some or all of the cost through L&D. Payment options are available.

What does a typical week look like as an ODD Member?

After the onboarding, ODD will be there for you for as much (or as little) as you need it. This is how a random week could look like, a month or 2 years from now:

  • On Monday, there's a session on using narratives to build human-centric brands. You are busy so you attend while you respond to emails but you're not super concerned because the session is recorded anyway and will be in the Library for whenever you need it.
  • On Tuesday, you meet for 60 minutes with your core Mastermind group. You've been meeting twice a month for the past quarter, and your intimate conversations have been tremendously helpful as you’re growing your team.
  • On Wednesdays there's no official programming but you are looking to bring on a couple of senior designers to your team so you set up a couple 1:1s with people in the community to help you in your search. Maybe you end up hiring someone, who knows.
  • On Thursday, a couple of Fellows scheduled sessions on executive presentations. That looks great but you gave a talk to the community on strategic thinking last week so you decide to take it easy this Thursday and focus on unblocking that big project at work.
  • On Friday there's another Community Session on hiring but you decide to skip that one as well. You want to attend the social event that happens every Friday afternoon then relax for the weekend. You're starting the Design Management module next Wednesday and it'll be a bit more intense for the next few weeks.

Whatever challenge you are facing, ODD will be there, even if you're extremely swamped at work and you just need to decompress.

What ODD is NOT?
  • We don't expect you to go to everything. We pack a lot into the membership. There are a number of different formats that might peak your interest, some being more interactive than others. It's a lot to take in at once, but we recommend that you prioritize from the get-go to avoid becoming overwhelmed!
  • We are big on peer-to-peer learning. A lot of the value of this program comes from other Fellows! Whether this is through the resources shared on Slack, the community hosted sessions, or from advice and support given during your recurring small group meetings, there are a ton of ways to learn — not just through official programming.
What is the time commitment?

Between attending sessions, meeting other fellows 1:1, and curated mastermind groups you can expect to spend ~2-5 hours per week engaging with the program. We recognize that everyone in the program is working full time with busy schedules and a lot of personal commitments so engagement may vary week to week and that’s ok.

We have purposefully structured the program with your busy schedules in mind, allowing for structured content, a speaker series, and more curated small group sessions pairing those with challenges to those who have solved them before. We will also record and share sessions and engage asynchronously on Slack. This structure will continue throughout the annual membership.

Is this a fully remote program?

Yes. ODD will be run entirely remotely. 

‍Post-COVID, we’ll return to organizing offline programming like dinners, small gatherings, and retreats, but the core Membership will remain a remote-first experience.

Can I participate from anywhere in the world?

Yes. ODD will be entirely remote. This enables participation from all corners of the world. We’ve spent multiple ODD cohorts mastering the playbook for building remote communities and relationship building online, and will apply the same approach here.

Post-COVID, we’ll return to organizing offline programming like dinners, small gatherings, and retreats, but the core Membership will remain a remote-first experience.

What educational tracks are available?

You will initially pick one track to join when applying for ODD. However, the program is designed to be as flexible and non-linear as your career. Chances are, you'll change paths and encounter new challenges - ODD is here to support that.
As an example, you may join ODD3 as a First Designer and pick this as your track but in a few months you move into a management position - as a member, you'll have access to a Design Management track and a relevant group of peers in a similar stage to learn with and from.

Tracks available for ODD3:

Design Management

A deep dive into the fundamentals of design management. Understand what it takes to become a great design manager and meaningfully impact your team and the business.

  • Operating your team
  • Defining strategy
  • Performance management
  • Recruiting & hiring
  • Building your management portfolio

First Designer
As an early hire, this track helps you understand what it takes to navigate the challenges of being the first designer at a startup: how to balance IC vs strategic work, and all the things in between, while building the design practice from the ground up and how it evolves as the startup scales.

  • Picking the right startup to join
  • Design during th product-market fit
  • Building the team beyond Series A
  • Influencing strategy

Beyond Senior Designer
Helping senior designers grow in their path as an individual contributor role. Understand what skills are necessary, influencing without directly managing, and delivering impact by doing in order to grow into a staff or principal designer.

  • Building up your speciality skills
  • Leadership without direct management
  • Strategic communication
  • Mentoring other designers

Can I join any track after my onboarding?

You'll initially select a track during your application process and we’ll help you assess which track is most suitable for you via the interview process and onboarding, goal setting and pathfinding sessions if accepted to the program. This will help you clarify what is most suitable and therefore get the most value out of the track.
However, the program is designed to be as flexible and non-linear as your career. Chances are, you'll change paths and encounter new challenges - ODD is here to support that. As an example, you may join ODD3 as a First Designer and pick this as your track but in a few months you move into a management position - as a member, you'll have access to a Design Management track and a relevant group of peers in a similar stage to learn with and from.


What happens after the first year of membership?

After one year of membership, you will have the opportunity to renew your membership. If you choose not to renew your membership, you will lose access to all On Deck platforms, networks, and content.

Did we miss your question? Drop us a line and we will get back to you asap.
>