Self criticism

by Joe Gillespie — Mar 1, 1999

Now, before rushing off to show your client your wonderful new creation, stop. Think! This is the point where you have to stand back from your work and give it the acid test. This is where you have to try and take your client's point of view as best you can - it's not easy, but ask yourself these questions.

Does the answer meet the brief?

Have you 'bent' the brief to fit in with a preconceived idea?

Can you honestly say, 'This is the best job I have ever done!' because your talent is measured by your portfolio and people like to see progress. You are only as good as your last job!

Be cruel. Play Devil's Advocate. Don't be afraid to reject anything that doesn't feel right. It is, after all, better that you reject the bad ideas before somebody else does. Ask friends or colleagues for their impressions. Weigh-up what they say. They are more likely to spot your 'indulgences' than you are but they will still only see the 'surface'.

Don't use your client to test ideas on. How would you feel if your doctor gave you a series of options instead of a firm diagnosis. It breaks down confidence. You can ask questions or opinions, certainly, but try to keep them in the abstract.

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