26 Jun 10 Soft Skills your Web designer must possess
What’s that one quality you want your designer to possess, apart from expertise? Ability to beat around the bush, rhetorics, having a ‘Jargonsized’ lingo, a marked eloquence, wittiness , amicability or being able to strike a camaraderie with you on the first go? While they may sound more apt for selecting a manager, you’d be undoubtedly laden with questions when for the first time you head out for a meeting with your designer.
Any expectations? Here’s listing 10 soft skills you’d possibly like to add to your list.
1. A Designer who understands your ‘Motivation’
No, you’re not a playwright and obviously your Designer isn’t acting in any of your plays. Motivation isn’t only restricted to characters in theatre. A designer too needs to understand where you’re coming from, your business, your motivation behind getting a website and everything in between. The future of your website hangs on it. If your designer is familiar with your business you can even expect some valuable suggestions from him or her. That can help you with positioning your site better on the web.
And if he/she is new to your industry, it’s your job to make them feel at home so they can deliver the best possible solution. It’s all in your interest. Many a times we expect the designers to comprehend things by themselves without making them understand. As clients we feel quite connected to our industry (even emotionally so), but make no mistake- your designer doesn’t feel the same, as they work for multiple industries.
However, once they understand your motivation – you’re pretty much sorted!
2. Quality Conscious
It’s a must- a designer has to be quality conscious. Once you’ve shared your idea and your vision, it’s your designer’s responsibility to give it a form. A quality oriented designer would do everything to deliver the finest results. He or she should be able to stretch the limits, look for ways and not stop till they do justice to your plans.
A knack for quality in a designer cannot be overlooked. He/ She must understand why good designs are good and what goes in them.
Your creation is of course your creation and you’re proud of it. And why shouldn’t you be? However, it still remains a good idea to be able to think objectively about your designs. Your person should be able to get into your shoes and see what you see. Besides, being able to scrutinize the work from the target audiences perspective would be a plus.
Being unreasonably protective about your work is not a good idea. Your chosen designer shouldn’t be overly possessive about what he/she has created. It can be detrimental for a long relationship.
It’s the flagship soft skill you’d like your person to possess. Thank God, designing isn’t a cut and dry job, it requires thinking which is why there’s room to evolve. And when there’re two or more people putting their heads together, disagreements may arise. Considering you’re flexible enough (if you yourself aren’t, then better be, as it’s a two way process, you can’t expect only the other person to be adaptable) with your views, your chosen person must also make space for what others think. Holding discussions can help you arrive at better decisions. A person who approaches a project with a beginner’s mind with no baggage from past achievements and is open to suggestions should be preferred.
Those who survive the longest are the ones most adaptable to change.
5. Good Communication Skills
You can imagine the (little) possibilities, if your designer’s native tongue is different, English fluency is just manageable and you haven’t a clue of his/her language. Of course, he or she doesn’t need to have a degree in literature, but if the person can convey a point lucidly and grasp exactly what you say and reflect views, chances of any communication gap becomes close to nil. Besides, you’d be able to bounce ideas to each other freely.
It isn’t at all a strict prerequisite, good designers are known by their work not by their communication. But nevertheless a point to be considered.
6. Imaginative (Having varied interests Help)
Here’s a point that can add some real value to your decision. It’s good to know what he/she prefers to do in free time. In a field like web designing if a person turns to various things for inspiration, not only purposely but with a genuine interest, he/she has a better chance to grow and last longer in their career. Interests like photography, sketching, art, adventure sports, reading, even travelling acts as an underpinning for Good Imagination.
Although these things don’t affect your work directly (which as a business owner you must be thinking) but given a choice between two equally skilled people where one of them is passionate about travelling, your decision should be easy.
7. General Awareness & Self Awareness
Knowing the latest Chartbuster by Adele or being aware of the International political scenario might be of little importance to your work. But having sound general awareness is a sign of broad perspective, active lifestyle which can definitely lend a hand in enhancing his/her creativity- as you remain in sync with the world.
Besides an aware person will also stay in touch with the changes in technology that happen day in, day out.
Self Awareness-Dictionary meaning refers to ‘awareness of your own individuality‘. It’s an added advantage if the person is attentive to how he/she is perceived. Such people are more controlled and don’t go by their whims & fancies. These sorts of people are likely to remain more sincere and compatible compared to self-proclaimed creative authorities.
8. Self Evaluation and Enhancements
The designer must have an editor’s eye. Fixing the errors must come naturally. He/she must be able to analyze and evaluate their work, look for solutions, suggest newer ways, etc. Of course you’re there for the final analysis but the designer must consider it his or her responsibility to evaluate the work first, make adjustments to the best of his/ her capability only then send it ahead.
9. Should be Organized
Being organized is half the battle won. The rule applies for every field, web designing included. In designing your work can get really confusing at times. It’s important to follow every feedback carefully and fix things one by one. One should make a checklist, categorize pictures, texts, graphics, videos and sounds in separate folders, besides labeling them properly.
This doesn’t just cut time but ensures everything is taken care of neatly.
Getting a prompt, organized designer on board can help you in honoring your deadline.
10. Having a Business Sense
Being a skill based profession, Web designers work either as freelancers on projects or are salaried persons working in organizations. And since it’s a creative realm, expecting them to have a business sense would be asking for too much. But there are people who have a natural knack for it.
If your designer comprehends your marketing needs, value assessments, knows how to manage costs and can devise a strategy for you, there’s nothing like it.
That said it doesn’t mean having a business sense precedes over having web designing knowledge. Knowledge of designing is a no compromise zone.
These are just some things that help in easing up your decision. But one thing remains central- your designer has to be an ace in his/her job. People often end up hiring those who’re able to sell themselves well. In designing, skill matters not the gift of gab.
If you’ve got anything to add to this list, be our guest.