I think the biggest problem is understanding that good design isn’t how something looks, but how it works as a whole. We have all heard that, yet there are a very small group of F500s that actually live by that everyday. And I think that’s generational problem.
Practically day to day there is plenty of blame to go around. From middle managers to marketing execs all the way to the top of mount Olympus. Orgs have no one to blame but themselves when they have a tin ear to where market forces are headed.
As an example there are certain personality types that are very rigid when it comes to ideas or processes. If they read something in an article or heard something in a conference then it must be the right way, because they discovered that idea before you did. Reading something or retaining information isn’t going to get you building something interesting or deliver good design. It helps, but it isn’t everything.
Know That You Do Not Know
Don’t make assumptions. Good design ideas don’t always stem from us. In fact most times good ideas find us after we put forth an effort to understand a problem. Good ideas are everywhere. The point of it is finding a good idea and adopting it as your own.
The process to finding good ideas sometimes starts with not knowing or having any preconceived notions. So don’t limit yourself to what you know now. Because I guarantee you will know more later.
The Right Way
The “right way” for one client may be different for another client. I take an additive approach to design. And that means that I take nothing away and add everything it needs. There is no right way for everyone.
As a side note, I think that’s why I am so drawn to consulting. I get to take the responsibility for my own work good or bad, and not take responsibility for any execs bad decisions. To me it’s real job security. Every client that trusts me enough to run their online business get’s results. They get the kind of results big vendors talk about, seldom deliver on and hire out to begin with.
Good design is everywhere and it is an easy game to win once you know that. At the end of the day, I think passion and commitment are key here. You may need to make decisions people don’t like. You can’t do that if you aren’t committed or passionate. The biggest problem is not being able to recognize a good idea and not having passion.
If you’re a designer wondering why good design isn’t everywhere then I hope this small post helps to get you on your highest path. Because, good design is out there waiting to be sketched, scanned, vectored, delivered, and published. Start now.