Listen to this article.
At a small studio, the expression "listen twice, speak once" reflects our approach to innovation and collaboration. It might sound simple, but it is the source of many great design solutions we deliver. Active listening is an important skill; we deploy it among ourselves and our partners to grow intentionally.
Before commencing most of our (client) partner projects, we run our trademarked Identity Architecture framework. This allows us to listen intentionally to all the project stakeholders collectively and also go further to conduct one-on-one interviews with them.
During the workshop, we ask all the relevant questions about the project and the individual perspectives of everyone that makes a conscious decision about it.
The extensive act of listening on our part charts a different course of action for the solutions we execute or propose. By listening actively, we hear all the unsaid points or challenges that should have been briefed. All of these insights uncovered drive an ingenious approach to design.
We deploy active listening amongst ourselves and not just our clients. Being a fully remote team of creatives operating across continents and time zones; the moments we spend together and how we collaborate dramatically influences the quality of work we deliver.
So we listen carefully to the body language of everyone, for when they need support or a divergent opinion on whatever they are working on.
For emerging creatives, active listening empowers them to become better conversationalists and collaborators. It teaches the unique skill of forming connections with clients and coworkers. It is a lifelong communication skill that continues to reward extensively.
In all honesty, with active listening, our partners are placed at the center of our actions and processes. This means we go beyond just knowing what they want. Our approach makes us deeply understand the context of their needs, which keeps us up with endless ideas. So far, it has inspired us to innovate, explore and be ahead of their needs.
We all need to be active listeners as designers; it cuts down the time of execution and increases the chances of getting projects right the first time.
So, listen actively! It makes a world of difference.