INside Track: Time vs. Experience – The Value Proposition

Nothing is more maddening for a designer than having her value tied to how long it takes to execute on a project. A client or manager may (and often do) think – “Hey, it only took 15 minutes to retouch the image in my ad. How hard (read valuable) could it be?”

What clients obviously don’t realize, but the designer knows, is that her years of experience with color theory, Photoshop, printing and preflight enabled her to use the tool of her trade – her computer – to quickly, expertly and efficiently choose the best options to achieve the desired result. The 15 minutes is irrelevant.

When you go to a doctor for an appointment that lasts 10 minutes and costs $200 the assumption is that you’re paying for their expertise – not their time. You should make that same case with your clients and managers or be prepared to suffer the consequences of their ignorance.