In projects, as in life, communication is key.
In a time where almost every single professional or social interaction is conducted by phone or video call (I’m writing this in the middle of April 2020, amidst the coronavirus social distancing mandate), communication styles and approaches are more important than ever.
During the design process, the largest volume of communication centres on, arguably, the topic of feedback. As such, we thought it might be valuable to give you a quick rundown on some tips and pointers to consider for the next time you crack your knuckles and approach the keyboard.
In short - unclear or ever-changing feedback requests can be the great undoing of any project, and I guarantee both you and the project team will be left frustrated.
So, how should you give feedback?
Don’t say ‘could we just make it all a bit more...I don’t know...alive?’ - say ‘is there something we could add in that makes it more dynamic? Perhaps an animation? Increasing contrast in the colourways?’
Don’t say ‘I think maybe it should be different, perhaps…’ - say ‘I would like to change this particular element’
Don’t say ‘could you just update all those things we discussed?’ - say ‘I would like you to update the FAQ font colour, the logo on the Business page, and the footer content, as we talked about’
Be exact, where possible
Don’t say ‘the logo is a little small - say ‘I’d like the logo bigger, do you think it would work at around 2x the current size?’
Don’t say ‘oh, I hate the colour green’ - say ‘for our product and brand palette, I don’t think the colour green works here.’
Don’t send a stream of Slack messages. Don’t send multiple emails over multiple days. Do try and get all your thoughts and considerations into one email - even leave it sitting in your drafts for a couple of days so you can come back and add to it, before sending your feedback in one lovely package to your Product / Project Manager.
We’d also take this opportunity to highlight that while all feedback is welcome, unfortunately, not all feedback is necessarily valid. If you ask us to update your FinTech website’s to use Comic Sans - we will protest (with well-reasoned and fully thought out objective arguments garnered from collective decades of experience, of course).
So there we have it! It’s not rocket science or brain surgery, fortunately. If you’re a naturally organised person, or have worked in roles where this was impressed upon you, this will come as a second nature. However, for those founders amongst us who have a more prominent creative streak or a waft of the disorganised genius about them, we hope this has provided - at the very least - some food for thought...