There are so many moving parts in an agency setting, especially in transferring information from client to creator, it’s not uncommon for a designer to leave a meeting with a foggy view of what their next steps should be. A crucial aspect to supporting your creative team is the capability to provide feedback with substance that can actually help guide their talent to the best solution possible. Here are some dos and don’ts to keep in mind when trying to give helpful creative feedback!
Understanding the thought process behind a design can help you get to the bottom of a choice you may not like or understand. Asking questions that get into the designer’s reasoning creates an open dialogue and can spark ideas that haven’t been considered before! You’ll also become more familiar with the way your creative team thinks and operates.
If it isn’t helpful, don’t say it! Bashing someone’s work without offering any suggestions for solutions will not only make them feel bad, but leave them without next steps or the confidence to try other options. Give your criticisms in a constructive way, and always explain why something isn’t working.
It’s easy to get excited about an idea and go off on a tangent, but for the sake of your creative team it’s important to organize your thoughts before coming to them with feedback. Consolidating specifics and avoiding rambling will save time and ensure you get the most important information across to your team.
It’s best to avoid phrases that could easily be interpreted differently when giving feedback. You may know exactly what you mean when you say “make it pop”, but that could mean a million different things to your designer. Do you want neon colors? Animated sparkles? Exclamation points? If you don’t elaborate with more specific ideas you could be stuck going back and forth for much longer than necessary.
Beating around the bush only makes things more confusing! As a creative director or account manager, it’s important that you convey criticisms respectfully but still ultimately get the point across. Avoiding discussion of design flaws out of fear that you’ll come off mean only takes your creative team further from the right solution.
Specifics are key when giving helpful feedback. If you’re at a point where you’re critiquing work and requesting changes, you should be able to identify specific aspects you want changed. Is the color scheme too dark and ominous? Is the font conveying the wrong mood? Take the time to correctly identify what isn’t working before asking for a solution.
Our creatives bring our biggest ideas to life with their talent and dedication to client satisfaction. It’s important in an agency setting to make sure you’re giving proper feedback to guide them in the right direction and ensure success for everyone!