Hopeless Integrity

As a designer you are constantly defending your INTEGRITY. Client expectations and requests, studio superiors, the reality of running/being part of a business – all challenge the preservation of your integrity.

How can a designer succeed in the eyes of a client and remain true to themselves without going crazy?

You need to be utterly convinced of your purpose and vision, as well as charismatic, articulate and authoritative. You must be a creative visionary, portray an enduring spirit of excellence and inspire clients with dazzling presentations and measurable career successes. You must be an expert designer (whatever your field), an educator, strategist, producer, historian, theorist, philosopher, psychologist and most importantly, a businessman.

The moment you lack confidence in your reasoning no matter how sure you are intuitively, your opinion will be cast aside and your integrity bruised. Every slug to your integrity will hurt more than the last. Your role will be reduced to following instructions and if/when it goes bad, they’ll blame you. When your integrity has suffered too much, you will loose hope and give in. You will ride the latest bandwagons of trend producing mindless, derivative, decorations sold on regurgitated, comfortable ideas and smart catch phrases.

Nobody said it would be easy. And again, the confused client/designer relationship is the core of the problem.

Each job that comes along will require you to begin by extracting requirements and outlining processes. From then on you will be educating and managing expectations. If your going to create something special the client and designer must be prepared to challenge and be challenged, with mutual respect and a common goal.

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