Design: career ladder
A rookie or someone with a year's experience is employed as a junior designer. He or she works under an experienced designer and is usually employed in a team. Responsibilities include 'finishing' concepts using digital tools and doing the legwork needed to collect and analyse market data. A junior designer is usually paid Rs 3 lakh to Rs 5 lakh a year, depending on work experience or the educational institution that he or she has graduated from.
Someone who has two to four years' experience and has shown superlative design skills is promoted to the role of lead designer. He or she leads a multi-disciplinary design team, managing most of the creative work in the project and is typically involved in more than one project at a time. A lead designer must understand how to extract the best results from the available infrastructure, drawing Rs 6 lakh to Rs 8 lakh a year a salary.
Four to six years' experience means that you are fit enough to be a project leader. Responsibilities include managing all aspects of projects and interfacing with clients. The salary offered is Rs 8 lakh to Rs 10 lakh a year.
Someone with five to eight years' experience moves up to being design director. He or she conducts research to evolve design strategies and manages high-value, large-team projects. A design director is expected to mentor younger designers and is paid Rs 10 lakh to Rs 20 lakh a year.
Eight to 12 years' experience will see you move to chief designer or top boss status. Responsibilities include evolving brand and product strategies. From in-house to brands to manufacturing companies, he or she has to manage them all. You'll be paid upwards of Rs 25 lakh a year.