Ten years of managing the design process has taught me a few key ideas. Here is a short list of the ways I've seen designers lose their value in a project and suggestions for how to get energy flowing and work your way out of it.
- Creative block. Eh. Things need to get done. If the left brain isn't working, switch to the right brain. Find a method to get the ideas out on the table. Force them out.
- Wrong tool. Photoshop is great for visualizing ideas, but it isn't ideal for rapidly exploring ideas. Use appropriate tools for different phases of a project.
- Details too soon. Design is in the details, but the idea isn't the details. Focus on details at the right point in the iterative process.
- Wrong conversations. Don't get stuck trying to figure out the purpose of the page while working on the rounded corners in Photoshop. Having a conversation about the "business goals" while in implementation mode is a recipe for disaster.
- Follow through. Starting and stopping can be a huge momentum killer if things can't get done. Binge sessions are necessary to get closure on an idea.
- Business goals lost. Staring at a computer screen and creating beautiful curves for extended blocks of time creates distance from the business goals of design. Be nimble.
- Designing for the screen. Design for the eye, not the screen. Good design is made by people to solve a problem for other people. 10 hours in front of a monitor will convince you that the problem you've solved is solved *by* Photoshop. Shake that idea off.
Have another to add?