Learn your designer's process
"Learn their process. Many "creatives" have a distinct method and logic through which they undergo to produce their creative work – counterintuitive, right? When you are hiring a creative, you aren't just paying for the deliverable output or time input. You are hiring their expertise, experience and process. Understanding this will help you to appreciate their craft, valuate their work and scope projects."
- Sarah Judd Welch, Founder & CEO of LoyalCX
For me, nothing is harder or more frustrating than to try to fit into a client's expectations of how the process will go. Why is that? I mean if you're hiring me shouldn't you have a say in that? I think it's because creating something for a business involves a learning curve so that I can design things that represent your business. And I have a method for gathering information and a method for processing that information. It works for me, It gets results. It's clear. But clients are thinking about the end deliverable, as they should. And I think that's why the designer must drive the creative process. The client doesn't care about the process—it's not what they're paying for. So long as it gets them a good result (logo, report, whatever) that's what they care about. Makes sense.
So as a designer I tell them what they'll get, but I spell out my process and expectations for how and what will be communicated and when—so they'll know what to expect and they'll know that they're taken care of. They don't have to worry about the end product because I'm managing the steps that will get us there on time. They just have to show up, on time, with answers.
This makes it easy for a potential client to think about the process and decide up front if the process will work for them, and it relieves them of the need to drive the progress of the project. They know I'll do that.