One thing that designers need to be really good at is taking in various confusing and ambiguous inputs and creating clarity out of nothing. This is something that many people credit to being creative. I often find myself listening to a client, vendor, friend, fellow designer, or my staff telling me different things about different subjects in different order…and I sit there trying make sense out of it all!
Sometimes it feels as if our job is just that – to make things clear. Once you have clarity on a situation, solutions emerge from smoke. I do the normal post-it gathering exercises in the mind. Club similar things in one basket, put chronology in place, arrange process to address the gaps, and add details before and after events on each post-it. Each time I do this, it brings me to another level of clarity that is very important for growth.
Often, when we hear words, jargon, concepts and ideas, we tend to assume their meaning without questioning the real meaning and its relevance. Professionals mostly fake a common understanding of these concepts. It is good to step back and question these a bit, to bring clarity to yourself. What do you mean when you say ‘logo’ or ‘user’ or ‘color’? What do you really mean when you use words like ‘successful’, ‘premium’, or even ‘experience’?
It is also good to provide this clarity when you make a presentation or when you are talking. You will be surprised at how this eases communication of ideas. Common language and understanding is the basis of any meaningful conversation. Try to make this a part of your professional understandings as well. This simple clarity is eye opening and perhaps the big secret to fostering creativity.
Sudhir Sharma, Editor-in-Chief