Bierut on clients

by whitewirestudio

As so many designers complain about their clients endlessly, it is refreshing to hear fancy-pants designer Michael Bierut give the industry a little pep talk on this topic as part of CreativeMornings (back from January!). Clients don’t suck the life out of every project, really. And if you find that they are, it’s your responsibility as a designer—and as a human being who wants to be happy—to change the work you’re doing and who you’re doing it for.

A lot of what he says is actually quite obvious, yet funny enough, we do need to be reminded. Here are a couple of his snippets:

“My work is so much better when I’m interested in what the client is interested in.”

“Clients run the same gamut—as human beings do—some of them are really smart and really nice and bad clients. Some of them are assholes and can be good clients.”

“The best clients love design, or don’t give a damn about it. The worst kind are the in-between people who care about design enough just to worry about it and then drive you crazy.”

“I never talk about ‘educating the client.’ I hate that phrase.”

“Tibor Kalman said you can never go wrong if you hire someone/work with someone smarter than you.”

“Bad clients take up more of our time than they should.”

He goes on to name some of his favorite clients and says, “these people are why you’ve heard of me.”

CreativeMornings is a monthly morning gathering of creative types organized by Tina Roth Eisenberg a.k.a swissmiss (swiss-miss.com).

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