Designers spend their lives learning to design. They have to work hard to learn other essential business skills, such as how to calculate the financial return their work creates for their clients. The traditional design model teaches a creative person to solve a particular design problem through an exhaustive series of possible solutions and iterations. This involves lots of creative thinking about aesthetics, but with little context for the overall business impact with which the design solution will be integrated.
Designers then present these multiple design solutions for a given problem, putting the onus of responsibility on the client to somehow subjectively choose the “best” design from the collection of possibilities.
Lots of unrecoverable creative time is spent upfront to find the ideal solution. A few notable problems result from this model: a) either this time is billed to the client, inflating
project costs; or – b) some design solutions really aren’t that good. They’re only included to persuade the client to “choose” the designer’s favorite solution; or, more common than many realize – c) ‘recycling’ of bad ideas.
We grew tired of this wasteful process and thought: “There must be a better way…” . What we developed, we now refer to as the 360° Design Project Lifecycle. We believe design should not begin before extensive dialogue between client and designer. We believe that good design is rooted in deep truth. This truth requires intimacy, trust and honesty to discover. We explore with our clients first. Next we define the objective. Then we design the best solution – the one that connects emotionally with ideal prospects, filters out other-than-ideal prospects, and compels buyers to choose our clients.