Do You Have a Happy Designer/Client Relationship?
Your relationship with your “go-to” designer may be more important than you think. Being able to communicate effectively with your designer can save you time and money in a big way. If you are understood, like any relationship it will make your life a whole lot easier.
Communication is the key to having a successful client/designer relationship. Both parties need to be able to convey what they want and don’t want, (examples help) how much they want to spend/charge, and have the opportunity to suggest options and critiques. Making sure that your designer’s style and past project samples line up with your needs is important and understanding your client and doing your homework on the organization can also help develop an easy relationship.
Clear and realistic project timelines need to be established early on. Often projects may seem like small items, but a designer may develop several concepts before arriving at the one best suited to their client’s needs. Enough time to allow for the creative inspiration is important (for both parties). Any professional understands deadlines and knows what it takes to deliver on time.
It is very important to discuss your long term as well as short-term design goals. If your designer is only focused on the immediate project, they may not design to enhance your brand goals. Provide information and samples of materials that have been used and developed previously as well as what is planned for the future. That history will help your designer make better and quicker design decisions. No designer wants to finish a design and find out later that it doesn’t relate to any other “look” that you have established. The more information your designer has, the better.
Don’t be afraid of candid discussions regarding your experience. Most professionals want to hear the good and the bad. If something didn’t go the way you planned, talk about it and allow the other party the opportunity to improve or to “make it right.”
A solid critique of the finished product and experience is always beneficial to both parties. The experience will be much improved the next time around.
Respect and Trust
As a client, you know your business. As a designer, you know your business. Respect each other’s knowledge and experience. Remember that you both have the same goals and work together.
Like any good relationship, it takes time and honest communication. When you see amazing results… you’ll know you have a happy designer/client relationship.