We all have expectations. We want this project to go just as smoothly as you do. But that all takes good effort and collaboration from everyone. We have some guiding ideas we think can help the project expectations, roles, and best practices for making something amazing, TOGETHER.
This is a partnership
We approach every single one of our client relationships as a partnership with goals that align, with your best interests in mind. Trust and transparency are vital to us, and we demonstrate that in everything we do. Just like a long-term business partnership, we need to have regular communication, mutual respect, and a synchronized vision for our together. When any of these are out of line, we can get off track fast.
Being sensitive during idea generations and brainstorms is extremely important. It takes guts to present half-baked ideas and if they are dismissed in a rude way or too quickly you risk killing creativity in your team.
It’s crucial to vet as many crazy ideas as possible before funneling down the best ones. The goal of idea generation in a team is to allow for a lot of bad ideas to pave the way and give birth to the good ones. When coming up with ideas or solutions, words like “what if” or “I’m thinking out loud” can be helpful to express that design is a process with multiple stakeholders, an everchanging dialogue, and something that is not set in stone but should be discussed.
Try to embrace the fact that you might not have all the knowledge about the users’ needs or about what might, or might not, work. Maybe it was not the right time for it at that point, could the idea be revisited in a different way?
Preferences: You not liking something is irrelevant
During the first rounds of any presented work, you learn that saying “I don’t like this color”, or “I don’t like this layout” is completely irrelevant. Yet we still hear it from time to time. Design is not about your own preferences but about meeting the needs of a specific user group. As the client, you are (usually) not the user. What you should be saying is – if you know it to be true – “I don’t think this color will work for the intended user group, because…” and that last word is really important. There must be reasons for all decisions in a design, and they must go all the way back to the use case. Also, avoid generalizations. Claiming that “women don’t like this or that” or “men don’t like this or that” is very rarely true.
Quality takes time
We schedule our days and weeks around your work, time to think, time to sprint, and time to simmer. We know that our best work has many iterations, updates, and ideas that feed into it. But at the end of the day, if we rush anything, it usually cannot be as good as if we took our time.
Good, frequent communication
Being responsive is key. If the designer or developer has questions, try to answer them as quickly as possible to optimize their time and your investments. A developer or designer that doesn’t get feedback has two choices; either to wait for your reply, thus being blocked, or continue working on assumptions that might lead the project down the wrong path.
Another important thing to remember is that the developer or designer is likely learning about your field and target audience on the fly. You’re the expert in your field and they’re experts at designing and coding, so try to be patient when they start asking questions that you think have obvious answers. Rest in the fact that they know a lot about their fields of expertise and that with your help they will bring you a great project.