Easy Breezy Client Communication
Filed under Clients
Information bombards everyone ALL.THE.TIME. You. Your clients. Your partners in the design project.
But, to keep a design project on schedule, you MUST break through the noise and get your message seen and heard.
Who has time for re-dos and restarts? I don’t. And I bet you don’t either 🙂
There’s just no time for ineffective client communication.
To help you avoid common communication pitfalls, use my tips for smart, efficient and super effective client communication.
- Be human!
When you build a strong professional relationship that still feels personal, communication will be more effective. It just will. When you strip out the titles of client and designer, at the end of the day, we’re all still humans interacting.
- Quality over quantity
For communication to be effective, it needs to achieve its goal. If you don’t understand the purpose of your communication it is automatically ineffective. Determine the critical communication channels and messages that you need to have with your client and don’t add to it just to ADD. Be intentional.
You will undoubtedly have your preferred forms of communication whether it’s email, phone, face-to-face meetings, social media or project management tools such as Trello, Asana, Evernote, etc. Whatever method you choose, just be CONSISTENT with it so that during a project you and your client know when and what communication to expect.
Don’t let your message get lost in fluff. Be direct. Be simple. Don’t send an email that starts with a question about the color of the couch and ends with a diatribe about the traffic you dealt with today.
- All questions are good
Design is in the details, so there are NO stupid questions! Be sure to remember that question asking is a two-way street, and model good listening by confirming answers. I like to repeat the answer in a different way so that we are all on the same page.
- Show and tell, people!
Channel your inner kindie! When you use visuals to show your thoughts and design concepts, it helps avoid miscommunication. And, it’s certainly more engaging when you use visuals during your client touchpoints.
- Keep it professional
We all have those clients that become friends, but during your project, it’s best to keep it professional. Keep those conversations focused! Just, try to keep it together! HA! Also, when interacting with your client, give them your undivided attention. No double dipping, multi-tasking by texting while in a face-to-face meeting or checking your email when you’re on a Skype call.
- Set communication expectations on day one
If I had to pick between no communication or to over communicate, I would choose to over communicate every day of the week. Before the start of every project, be sure that you and your client communicate about communication. That’s funny, right? But, it’s important to set communication expectations from the very first day.
I’d love to hear from you! Share your tips in the comment section below or tell me how these tips changed your business.