Designer vs Customer and who to blame
If we see into, both designers and customers wish for the same. All of them want to get a qualitative product in a short time. Owner of startup is always looking forward to the release, while designer is striving to achieve success implementing minor corrections, saving nerves and time.
If the truth is so clear and understandable, why do so many controversial questions appear? Why can two sides having the same goal be on the edge of conflict?
In this note we want to share with you experience, we are trying to use in our practice to get top-notch result with the lowest losses from both sides.
The first thing we should never forget about is:
There are no bad people. Conflicts happen because of misunderstanding.
Lets find these “weaknesses” and discover the ways to avoid them.
The first trick is lurking right on the stage of negotiation, when designer and customer get acquainted and trying to understand either they fit each other or not. While this period a lot of things are discussed orally and are not recorded after the call. But a lot of promises follow the acquittance period. Customer tells about the project and his vision of what he wants to get, designer in return tells about his propositions and his expert opinion. You may had a situation, when one side asserted, that something had been discussed on the very beginning of collaboration. This is a rather frustrating moment, as we cannot hold everything in our head and it is very difficult to figure out who is right and who to blame. That’s why to protect yourself and your customer from unwanted nerves, record all of the main points and after the call is ended, send the list with the points you agreed on to customer. Something is missing — let him add it to the list. You have a written agreement now.
And here it goes, you have already agreed to work together. Happiness, hopes and dreams are overwhelming you, no matter designer or customer you are. Both are anticipating a miracle. But don’t hurry to start working at once. The customer might have his own idea of how it has to be. If you proceed to work, without outlining all of the conditions, rules will be changed every day and this will make the customer nervous and demotivate the designer.
From the beginning, ask the customer to list everything, that has to be included to product’s functional, to understand that you are on the same page. The next step is having a call to discuss everything specified by customer ( do not forget to sum up and send everything afterwards). In most cases, any application has typical sections and a priori understandable structure, i. g.: chat, different catalogues, profile and so on. Experienced designer sees a picture of these parts in his mind from the beginning. The exception are the sections, that form the killer feature of the app.The very these sections might cause trouble. If you understand that its far from trivial task, ask customer to provide a brief user story. Even if customer lacks free time, let him know, that it will save a lot of time in future.
Programs like Jira, Basecamp and Trello will significantly simplify the process of work and its management as there you can attach files and leave comments, which is very easy and convenient.
Showing the result of work to customer is always an exciting moment. If customer is happy — that is great, in case if he has some corrections — ask him to think over this functional and only that implement corrections to it. If it is needed, explain your concept or prepare the description beforehand in order to avoid additional questions.
It is not a secret for a designer, that very often some changes entail others, which are not visible to the naked eye. That is why try to get all of the corrections in one place, as long as it is possible and only then you can start reworking.
Cadabra Studio ensures that following these rules no designers and no customers were harmed;)
Thank your for reading us!