Design Feedback for Maximum Visual Success

Are you gaining the maximum benefits from your designer’s skills and expertise?

At least once a week I notice clients struggling with their own feedback. Too often I hear, “It’s not working for me, but I don’t know how to fix it!” This is actually my favorite kind of feedback. How to fix it is not your problem—it’s my job! With a few brief questions, I can unravel the problem, and open the paths to new solutions. When you jump to a solution for designers to take, you are actually removing their expertise from the process and effectually demoting them to layout technicians.

When reviewing a design, think about these key points:

1. What isn’t working? 
The colors, this font, that photo...take a quick glance and notice what elements cause friction for you.

2. How are you reacting? 
Does it seem too crowded? Does it contradict the response you want? What reaction do you want instead?

3. Why? 
This step is optional, but try to pinpoint why you’re reacting in such a way (The blue is too tropical. The photo reminds me of a bad vacation. The font is too whimsical.)

4. What to do about it?
No need to worry about this one! In most cases, you won’t know what to do about it. That’s OK! Don’t feel like you have to assume responsibility for the solution. Whenever possible, leave the solution open for the designer. You may be surprised how effective the results can be.

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