5 Transformative tips I learned to survive almost losing my design job to AI

Publicis Sapient Experience
3 min readApr 26, 2024


In my journey spanning over two decades across geographies and design challenges, from freelance ventures in Norway to deep dives into London’s print and advertising realms, and now entrenched in the realm of digital experience and service design at Publicis Sapient in Germany, change has been a constant and adaptation is a must.

But amidst the whirlwind of transformation, the most recent one shakes the tree like no other before it: How Will AI disrupt (or take) my job? The anxiety is palpable among colleagues and clients alike. I hear people say ‘There’s no more need for designers sitting around toiling on bespoke and original art in traditional tools like Photoshop’. I hear people say ‘The receptionist at our office will now be designing the front end of the client website (as well as) managing the front-of-house duties’. Others blissfully unaware of just how fast AI tools and services are being produced on an almost daily basis — more on that later.

Let’s zoom into how graphic designers grapple with the advent of AI. Picture their initial panic: ‘This Midjourney visual is too good to be true’, ‘I could have never done that’, ‘And then Sora turns all that 4K glory into perfect videos’. Wouldn’t you retrain as a carpenter, or a receptionist? Yet, within weeks, their trajectory alters dramatically.

Here are my 5 transformative tips to survive:

  1. Rolling with the Punches: You know, at first, we designers were freaking out about AI, but then we realised we had to roll with it. Instead of seeing it as a threat, we saw it as a new tool to play with and enhance our creativity.
  2. Think Outside the Box (With a Little Help): It’s like when you’re stuck on a design problem, and suddenly you think, ‘What if I combine this AI tool with that one?’ It’s like having a brainstorming session with a digital assistant who’s always ready to help you think outside the box.
  3. Stay Sharp, Stay Ahead: We quickly learned that in this fast-paced AI world, you gotta stay sharp. So, we’re constantly learning new tricks, keeping up with the latest AI trends, and evolving our skill sets to stay ahead of the game.
  4. Work Smarter, Not Harder: With AI doing the heavy lifting on mundane tasks, we’ve got more time to focus on the fun stuff — like coming up with cool design concepts and bringing them to life. It’s all about working smarter, not harder.
  5. Teamwork Makes the Dream Work: Collaboration is key in this AI-driven world. We’re always bouncing ideas off each other, sharing AI hacks, and learning from one another. It’s like having a built-in support system to help us navigate this crazy AI journey.

So, yeah, while the rise of AI might have initially freaked me out, it’s actually turned out to be a pretty awesome ride. And hey, if you ever need a little AI inspiration, check out theresanaiforthat.com. Trust me, it’s a game-changer. And if you’re seeking guidance, reach out to us at Publicis Sapient. We’re here to demystify the AI landscape and guide you through this transformative journey.

Article by Nick McNeil, Associate Creative Director at Publicis Sapient (Munich).