Reading List: 5 Design Books for Project Managers

Natasha Fedorova

Category: Creative


5-books-for-PMsOn a daily basis, project managers work with clients and designers to obtain the best results for each campaign. However, translating client needs to designers can sometimes lead to an “it’s all Greek to me” situation. As a designer at NJI Media, I pulled together this short book list to provide helpful starting points for account and project managers to better understand graphic design, basic web design and the industry as a whole. After reading these books, you and your designer will no longer be speaking different languages.

1. Designing Brand Identity

Have you ever looked at a brand or campaign and thought: “that is amazing, how did they do that?” Of course you have. This book is perfect for anyone in the industry, whether you are a designer or project manager. It includes a five-step process for creating an “effective brand identity.” The book features over 30 case studies, giving readers an inside look at some the most successful brands and trends.

2. Thinking with Type

Serif? San Serif? Grid wha-? This book gives readers an in-depth, but very easy to understand, guide to typography. It explains the correct and incorrect usage of type, style sheets, font licenising, mixing typefaces, difference between print and web… Thinking with Type is for anyone who works with words. Definitely check out their website,, for more useful information.

3. Information is Beautiful

Information is all around us and it is our job to make something visually pleasing and understandable out of it. Information is Beautiful is like the beginner’s guide to infographics. Most of the visualisations are very simple, giving the reader a clear understanding of how seemingly complicated data can be transformed into something beautiful.

4. HTML and CSS: Design and Build Websites

Ever been curious about learning HTML or CSS, but have been intimidated by boring and complicated explanations? As someone who works in the world of web design, it is essential to know at least a little bit of code, and this book makes it possible. It is well-written and (bonus!) thoughtfully designed. It carefully outlines its main points and makes use of infographics to break things down in an engaging way. You don’t even have to read the whole book, you can flip through and read only the topics that interest you. It’s that easy.

5. A Book Apart

If you’re someone who is more into reading a series, then these are the books for you. A Book Apart is a series of brief 100-page books for people who work in web design. The books cover a range of topics from CSS to responsive web design to strategy. Their goal is to explain seemingly tricky topics as simply as possible, making these a must-have on your shelf.

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