Business Development Director

New York

Smart Design is looking for an engaged and engaging personality to help lead the business development strategy and activities in our New York studio.

The ideal candidate is a consultative business development leader and ultimately a relationship success manager who’s responsible for making sure that both client and Smart view their relationship as mutually beneficial. This role spans across client categories, but requires a depth of knowledge and focus on product and service innovation with exposure to business design, brand strategy, and UX design.


  • Own the overall business development process: engagement, needs assessment, opportunity framing, proposal development, and delivery. This person will maintain responsibility, clarity, and accountability for the whole, but knows how and when to activate colleagues to move opportunities and relationships forward.
  • Proactively build a steady and growing revenue stream by gaining an intimate understanding of clients’ needs, strategies, product & service offerings, and decision-making structures and help teams successfully capitalize on these learnings at every stage of the business development process.
  • Create and execute new business plans for the New York studio including the establishment of target profiles and prospecting databases, working with Marketing to meet business development objectives.
  • Work collaboratively with dynamic, multi-disciplinary teams to provide overall account leadership.
  • Advise team on how to build long-term relationships with senior level executives and position Smart Design as a trusted advisor.

Naturally, you have:

10+ years of business development and/or client engagement experience in a multi-disciplinary design firm, innovation consultancy or strategy firm.

Strong reputation for creating mutually beneficial relationships with senior level executives and other stakeholders across organizations of varying size and complexities.

Thrives in a self-directed role, but understands that successful collaboration with teams is critical to success.

Proven ability to develop and consistently fill a new business pipeline, develop and close new opportunities and to grow relationships up and across large organizations.

Experience articulating and securing large scale strategic design projects.

Polished, persuasive and consultative writing and presentation abilities.

A degree in business or marketing or other relevant experience.

Ability to travel as needed, 25% on average.