Reflections from four years building things at Basecamp

Basecamp illustration by Nate Otto.

Basecamp was a special opportunity for me as a graphic designer to learn a values-driven, if not deeply opinionated way to run a successful business. Alongside Jason Fried and the rest of the company, I practiced writing, I practiced coding, I practiced selling. The opportunities to extend my skills felt more like job perks instead of requirements.

There’s unending industry pressure on employees — regardless of role — to continually learn new skills in quests to be seen as employable talent. In Basecamp “fuck what the industry says” fashion, they showed me skill growth can be framed as “learn this for you, not for someone else.”

Here are passing reflections shaped from my four years building things at Basecamp.

Learn to code not because you want to be more employable, learn to code because you’re curious on how things work.

Learn to design not because you want to create something beautiful, learn to design because you want to make life easier for people.

Learn to write not because you want to be a thought leader, learn to write because you want to better connect with people.

Learn to sell not because you want to drive revenue, learn to sell because it’s how we move others.

If you hate something, make something.
If you love something, make something.

To Jason and the Basecamp crew: thanks for the learnings.

👍

--

--

--

Product Design at Instagram — https://migreyes.com

Love podcasts or audiobooks? Learn on the go with our new app.

Recommended from Medium

Joe Schoen Visual Foundation Studio Blog 8

Copyrights, Cover Thefts, and Cake!

The Intricacies of Product Design

Essential reads for UX/UI Designers

An Exercise in Designing from Scratch

Hexch Weekly Content(June 7)

3 Mindset Shifts You Need To Start Using Webflow

illustration of a designer in front of devices

My Journey towards Digital Research

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Mig Reyes

Mig Reyes

Product Design at Instagram — https://migreyes.com

More from Medium

The Barnum’s Effect In Job Applications: How It Can Make Your Career Development Hard and How To…

Creative Strategies Hiring Top Talent

IF you decide to write a cover letter, THEN read this

Stories and Some Learnings: Lessons from an Interview