Sunday, April 29, 2012

Design Is A Job (2012)

Hello .... and how are ya? I just finished reading "Design is a Job" by Mike Monteiro, #7 in a series called "A Book Apart." If I had to sum it up in just a few words, I'd say the book is about a few basic truths, all centered around the idea of R-E-S-P-E-C-T, including perhaps a side message about the value of lunch. So, here goes ...

1. Respect your clients. You need them. Without them, you don't have work. Help your client communicate their needs and do not mock them ... but if you do - mock them - make sure you are out the door, down the hall, in your car, and over the bridge before you do. Makes sense.

2. Respect yourself, your time, and your process. Stick with it. Go with your gut. If someone isn't going to be a good fit for you or your company, refer them to someone else. Determine who's making the decisions and include them in the conversation at the beginning. Get comfortable talking about money. Make sure it's there. Know how it's controlled. Invoice often and at concrete milestones. Have a good lawyer who will stand behind your well-written contract and pull you out of the fire if necessary.

3. Respect other designers. Swallow your pride if you are an in-house designer and an outside source is brought in to do your work. OK, this coming from the perspective of the author who is big enough, well-known enough, and respected enough to have his book's foreword written by Erik Spiekermann, but it's a good point. Who understands what you do better than someone else doing the same thing? and why not help your brother succeed? We should all act like bus drivers and protect our own (read the book if you want to understand that reference).

In addition, Mike respects his lawyer, his kid, probably Aretha Franklin, everyone in accounts payable, his business partner, and his baby mama, who probably isn't his love partner, but apparently not vice presidents. Go figure.

Mike's got a smart-ass style of writing. It took me a good 25 pages to warm up to him but when I did, I found myself laughing out loud. "Design is a Job" is applicable to anyone in business and, bottom line, when you finish the book you feel good about about yourself.

To find on amazon: Design Is a Job

1 comment:

Hariklia said...

Nice cover! and good advice. Thanks for the summing up.