We are all the same. We all want to be loved, to be accepted and to succeed, in one way or another, both in our personal and professional lives. For us designers, we all just want to do great work and have our clients love us too. We secretly long to hear comments like “Wow. Cool gradient bro” as we show our peers the hero section of a Home page, or we narcissistically imagine the response our carefully crafted signup button will get at the client presentation…….. No? Perhaps that’s just me then.
While we mean well, our desire to impress can trap us. It can lead us down the wrong path, alienate the project from our client’s goals and often just get in the way of doing what we are supposed to do – making things. Sometimes we become more focused on what the design says about us, rather than the client.
To avoid this, let us remember that design is an iterative process, a process in which we are not supposed to know all the answers. Design isn’t the un-veiling of a solution in which everybody is supposed to be impressed and speechless, it’s a process in which mistakes are meant to be made and not everybody is supposed to be impressed. Let us judge the success of our work not by positive or negative responses to aesthetics, but by the quality of conversations we are having and the questions we are answering in the process.