Can we start the year out with some awesome client communication?
The kind of communication that helps you avoid mixups, delays and mistakes- and creates a beautiful client-designer collaboration?
Heck ya! Communication is essential to a happy client/designer relationship! Who has time to re-do, re-work and re-start at any point during the design process? Didn’t think so:)
I start my projects out with questionnaires (verbal and/or written) that ask design related questions. Simultaneously, I talk to my clients about my processes and share my preferred method of communication. I think by talking this through with your clients, you often see you may have to handle things differently, depending on your conversations.
So be open. Be flexible! Seriously, I feel like the woman below ALL THE TIME!!
Start each project by communicating YOUR expectations and understanding THEIR expectations!
There are so many ways to communicate these days! We have:
- Social Media
- Tools like Trello, Asana, Evernote, etc.
Remember, whatever methods you use, keep it consistent and keep it simple! No time for miscommunication! Here are some tips!
- Simple and direct
- Ask and answer any questions
- If you still have questions or need clarification, ASK right away!
- Use visuals
- Be professional
Simple and Direct
Just as it sounds! Don’t send an email that starts with a question about the chair fabric and ends in Aunt Betty’s heart problem. That is fine for your family, but not clients:)
Ask and Answer Any Questions
Question asking is a two way street. There are NO stupid questions! Ask and answer all questions. Design is in the details, so get as much clarification as you need! Being attentive is good design! If you get an answer, I like to repeat it in a different way so that we are all on the same page.
Again, visuals are a two way method! Show-and-Tell, people!
Remember Kindergarten? You show and share and the other kids show and share:)
I know. We become friends with clients and conversations sometimes go off the rails. BUT, try to keep it together. Haha!
Also, don’t text while chatting or surf Facebook while Skyping. Doing two things doesn’t demonstrate your focus or interest!
We ALL want to have the BEST clients, so make sure to set communication expectations on day one of the project. Always err on the side of over-communication (is there such a thing?!), than no communication. Communication is two-way, so make sure your client is engaged.
Hope these tips help! If you have any great tips, please share away in the comment section:)
Have a great week!