4 Great Tips for Error Free Communications with Clients and Contractors
Being a good interior designer means not only creating visually attractive concepts, but also communicating things effectively. It's the miscommunication that usually leads to the main problems within a project. So we drew up 4 efficient tips for you to become more successful in your communication.
1. Don’t play mind reader
The first rule in efficient communication – don’t play mind reader. No matter how experienced you are, don’t try to guess the desires and intentions of your client. The only way to get the correct information is to ask the questions directly.
When asking questions, try to get your clients to elaborate beyond simply answering the question to give you some background on their thinking processes. You should not only know their preferences, but also why they choose something over another. Understanding your client fully will help you to develop better solutions.
2. Recap a discussion
Another mistake that plenty designers make is that they rely too much on their memory. For any discussion that lasts more than an hour, it is beneficial to compose a short recap of what was discussed and any decisions that were made.
Meeting minutes like this will further help your clients fell comfortable with their decisions. If you have extra time, it is even better to send this recap via email so that it is documented.
3. Share info Early
One more thing that can kill your communication is the absence of transparency. Don’t wait until the end of the project to show the client customer the design direction.
It is much better to show the parts once they are ready to explain a holistic vision or design for a space because it will be easier for the client to grasp smaller spaces individually than all at once. Secondly, you will have more time to correct any mistakes, so you won’t be slammed on you all at once.
You might say that it is hard to keep dozens of document and design iterations. Luckily, you don’t have to. If you are using Fohlio, a special tool for interior designers, all of the burden here is taken care of.
With Fohlio you can hide specific parts of your design from being shared. What’s even better – you can set separate settings for each person you are sharing with. This way it is extremely easy to share the designs that are ready and hold back on the ones that are still being researched or in progress.
4. Make sure everybody is up to date
And finally, if you have a project that has many people involved, you need to make sure everybody is on the same page. Plenty of time can be lost bringing everybody up to speed and explaining what has already been discussed.
If you are using Fohlio for your documentation, don’t forget to use time stamp feature. It shows who and when viewed the document. This way you won’t have to ask anybody, whether they had a chance to look at it. You can simply look at the time stamp and get all the information you need. So instead of contacting everybody, you can focus on what is more important.
Fohlio provides specification download options in PDF, Excel of Indesign documents in. You can customize your report with product images, links to cut sheets and product webpage, and your company logo with a few simple clicks:
As you see there are plenty things that can kill your communication. We hope, these tips will help you with it. And what tricks do you use? Share with us in the comments!