How do consultants ensure that their design projects remain on track from beginning to end? How do they observe timelines and deadlines? The freelancers who excel at their niches are those who have learned to discipline themselves tremendously. In addition to that, the best ones know the tools to use to keep everything right on schedule.
The design project brief is one such tool. It’s so good that most freelance designers use it as a way of staying away from poor and annoying project management, which is detrimental to their relationships with clients.
It can be too tempting to appear busy on any consultancy project, especially on days when the body feels a bit strange, and the motivation to work is lacking. There are days when you would be better off taking a rest. For example, you can’t afford to dedicate yourself to working on a highly sensitive freelance design project when your mind and body are all over the place.
In such instances, what you need to do is to develop a habit of focusing on real work instead of keeping yourself busy with non-important work that has nothing to do with the project. Keep yourself fresh for the real work.
It’s important for consultants to learn how to undertake effective communication. It’s fine to communicate with your freelance clients as much as possible. Communication is good whether you’re doing it with clients or other members of your consultancy. However, it can be a reason for the derailment, especially during moments when it interferes with real work.
For this reason, it’s important to capture everything regarding communication in the design project brief. Clarify all issues about it to prevent it from making you all unproductive. Keep your eyes open for communication overload!
Typically, it may be difficult to know whether you have a difficult or troublesome client until you start working on the freelance design project. However, you could try to sieve them early to avoid future problems. The design project brief can play a surprisingly important role in clarifying all these issues for you. Freelancers have to build an innate ability for identifying bad clients early.
Otherwise, they could spend days, weeks and even months on freelance design work that isn’t just worth all that time and money. Learn how to filter your clients. Use the design project brief to help you with this!
You can’t keep your freelance design project on schedule by ignoring certain aspects of your work. As you will discover, balance is everything in this niche. Therefore, focus on finding the right balance between freedom and structure. Do you have the expertise or resources required for handling larger design projects? If not, what are your best options? Constant improvisation doesn’t always work. Good structure provides the different sets of skills you need for the project without losing your freedom as a designer.
Project management is all about understanding what your clients want then breaking this down to your freelance design team. For this reason, it’s crucial to understand what the clients want. Consultants who know the strengths, weaknesses, and capabilities of their teams can then marry the two together to come up with a winning formula.
Spend time to understand each member of your team. Know what makes each of them tick. Know what turns them off too. Convince the clients and members of your team to buy into the solutions you have developed.
Use design project brief to apply the measures outlined above and keep the project on track.