Head of Design

San Francisco, CA or Remote within US

About This Role

The Head of Design role is an opportunity for an experienced and versatile design leader to build off a solid foundation and define the design culture from the ground up. Reforge is a fast-growing professional education company where design can make a huge impact across multiple parts of the company. The role has the opportunity to both get your hands dirty and build/lead a team.

You'll be joining as part of the foundational team of a profitable proven startup, doubling seven figure revenue year over year, that is led by experienced entrepreneurs. In addition, you will be integrated into our community of subject matter experts include the leaders behind building companies like Slack, Pinterest, CreditKarma, ClassPass, ipsy, Eventbrite, SurveyMonkey, Thumbtack, and more.

Reforge was founded by Brian Balfour (former VP Growth @ HubSpot, 3X venture backed founder) and includes key advisors (Andrew Chen, Managing Partner @ Andreesen Horowitz, former growth @ Uber) and Russell Glass (Former founder/CEO Bizo - acquired by LinkedIn). We are based in San Francisco, but welcome remote team members based in the US. We offer competitive salary, benefits, flexible vacation, continuing education support and more.

About Reforge

Our professional world is changing faster than ever. This accelerating change creates more opportunity, but how we as professionals capture this opportunity is lagging far behind. Professional development and masters level education is a lifelong endeavor, however, there is a growing gap of what professionals want/need and the existing options available.

Reforge develops professional development programs for top performers. We work with the leaders of the fastest growing and most innovative companies such as Uber, Pinterest, Atlassian, and HubSpot to teach frontier topics to today's emerging leaders. Our programs focus on:

  • Results over certifications

  • Going deep, rather than skimming the surface

  • Continuous learning, over static expertise

In just a couple of years, we've built a thriving community of emerging leaders solving problems at Airbnb, LinkedIn, Salesforce, Amazon, Facebook, New York Times, Peloton, Stitch Fix, and many more. Here are just a few comments from our alums:

“I got my MBA at Berkeley, but this program has been more transformational for me than the entire two years I spent there. Thank you!”

“Reforge is easily the highest quality professional skills program out there. If I had to choose between attending an unlimited number of industry conferences, versus going only to the Reforge, I'd choose Reforge without hesitation.”

“Reforge has easily been one of the best investments of time and money I've ever made in my professional development. I love how the course codifies what I've been doing for the last four years as VP of Marketing.”

Why This Role Is Unique

  • Solid Foundation - We are profitable, doubling revenue year over year, NPS in mid 60's to low 70's, strong product/market fit, distribution based of 150K+ people, and a strong alumni and leadership community.

  • First 10 - You will be part of the first 10 employees and help us shape the future of the company.

  • Blank Canvas - You will be the first design hire. You will have a blank canvas to define design culture, processes, and contributions.

  • Massive Impact - There are multiple places within the company for you to apply design thinking and implement systems—you will have a massive impact on the company (including Brand, Content, and Product).

  • Reforge Network - The role will be plugged into the leadership and alumni Reforge network of product teams at the leading tech companies.

What You'll Do

  • Build and Lead A Team

    • Build, lead, mentor and inspire a team that will consist of Product Designers, Brand Designers, and Content Designers providing design direction and pushing the quality of the design work.

    • Contribute to the product and company strategy among the leadership team.

    • Define and build the design culture.

    • Contribute to strategic planning cycles, and collaborate with leadership to identify and define the highest priority problems and missions teams should be working on.

  • Product Design

    • Define and communicate a product design strategy and vision for the company.

    • Collaborate cross-functionally with product management and engineering to create a simple, intuitive, and cohesive user experience across the Reforge product.

    • Help create a product design culture that values data-informed decisions.

  • Facilitate Brand Design

    • Facilitate the process to defining and articulating the brand of Reforge with the help of a third party agency.

    • Contribute to deeply understanding who our customers are, the problems they have, and how they think.

    • Implement the brand throughout various touch points in the company including our external marketing presence, educational content, and product design.

  • Oversee Content Design

    • Build creative processes and systems that scale with a fast-growing course creation engine; create and manage asset library, help systemize the production processes, and ensure timely deliverables.

    • Oversee designers focused on translating detailed written outlines, data, and other components into story driven, visually rich presentations.

Who You Will Work With

  • CEO - You'll work closely with the CEO, Brian Balfour. Learn more about Brian here: https://brianbalfour.com

  • Head of Product - You'll work closely with our Head of Product, Dan Wolchonok. Dan was formerly the Dir of Product Analytics at HubSpot.

  • Head of Engineering - You'll work closely with our Head of Engineering, Buford Taylor. Buford was the 4th engineer at Eventbrite and previously founder/CTO of a few startups.

  • World Class Students - Our programs are application only and selective. They attract top performers from the world's leading tech companies.

What We Are Looking For

  • 8+ years of design experience across product and brand design

  • Ideally 2+ years building/managing design teams

  • Proven ability to hire and manage a high performing design team that works within cross-functional teams

  • Strategic thought leader that holds marketing and business goals at the center of design execution

  • Strong storytelling ability, making complex analytical concepts accessible, visual and engaging

  • Experience building and managing versatile design systems

  • Portfolio showcasing excellent design skills, product thinking, and problem-solving

  • An interest in getting your hands dirty by starting as a hybrid player/coach and then transitioning to full-time coach within 12 to 18 months


The internal mission of Reforge is to create an environment where you create the best work of your career. In order to do that we offer:

  • Flexible/Distributed Work Environment - Everyone does their best work in different environments. We operate as a distributed-first team and offer financial support that enables you to create the schedule and environment that fits to you. We offer financial support in creating this environment.

  • Professional Development - We focus on a culture of learning. We offer full financial reimbursement for almost all professional development interests and efforts.

  • Benefits - We offer top rated health, vision, and dental insurance. We cover 100% of monthly premiums for employees, and 70% for dependents.

  • Salary + Equity - We offer highly competitive salary and equity inline with top tier technology companies.

  • Flexible PTO - Having plentiful “off the grid” time is a key to doing your best work. We offer flexible PTO. Take time when you need it. Everyone must take at least 14 days per year, and we highly encourage more.

To Apply:

Name *
Note that we are only hiring for FT for this role.
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