IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 23

the adage is so old that it almost doesn’t bear repeating: A project is only as good as its client. Well, it turns out, that’s only part of the puzzle. success, it seems, is even more dependent on a strong—if not always easygoing—client­ designer dynamic. And on the designer having the chance to exercise the full scope of his or her expertise, which is dependent on that very partnership. iiDA’s book­publishing debut, What Clients Want, reveals the back­and­forths that produced the glossy project photos featured—or, as the organization’s executive vice president and ceo cheryl Durst puts it, “the pain behind the porn.” the limited­edition volume, available in June, includes riveting tales of the therapy, cultural anthropology, and outright sturm und drang that focused clients’ vision and propelled designers to give it their all in turn. the book results from an ongoing iiDA study investigating the client’s take on the benefits—both anticipated and unfore­ seen—of having an extraordinary relationship with a designer. As it turns out, the design firms delivered much more than the clients typically bargained for: the designers’ purview and knowledge were broader and more nuanced than was expected. on one hand, that’s a nice pat on the back, an after­the­fact recognition of the myriad skills that industry professionals bring to the table. but it also exposes a persistent image problem, a systematic lack of under standing of just what it is that interior designers do.

this provides an opportunity—and the motivation—for prac­ titioners to better explain their services in an effort to get the broader populace to understand the true power of design, that it’s not simply a matter of specifying panel fabrics and drawing up floor plans; it’s about sussing out and support­ ing clients’ sales objectives, LeeD goals, and cultural desires. this book is a great start at helping the industry figure out how to promote the full spectrum of its services. it’s no surprise that a superior collaboration can positively alter a company’s outcome in significant, tangible ways. to wit: the 14 case studies highlighted. Whittled down from a group of 65, they span a range of project types, locations, and firm sizes. More important, Durst and editor Melissa Feldman made their selections according to clients’ willingness to stop being polite. only when subjects are vocal about their desired results do both parties “realize the differ­ ence between thinking about design as a real­estate event and thinking about design as a human event,” Durst says. Feldman interviewed designers and clients both individually and together to revisit their process, with pull­each­others’­ hair­out stories encouraged. Like a site­specific design, no two processes are alike. Yet Feldman uncovered a commonality: “the one thing that holds true in all these cases is that a successful project hinges on the personal investments that develop between the client and the designer,” she says. Although a 12­year veteran of design journalism, even she was surprised by the friendships forged during project delivery.
perspective 23



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012

IIDA Perspective - Spring/summer 2012
From IIDA
Contents
Behind the Issue
IIDA News
Designer Dialogue
What Do Clients Want?
Inside the Design Mind
Design Decoded
Mythbusters
Resources
Viewpoints
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - IIDA Perspective - Spring/summer 2012
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - Cover2
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - From IIDA
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 2
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - Contents
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 4
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 5
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 6
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 7
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - Behind the Issue
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 9
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - IIDA News
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 11
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 12
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 13
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - Designer Dialogue
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 15
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 16
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 17
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 18
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 19
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 20
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 21
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - What Do Clients Want?
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 23
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 24
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 25
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 26
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 27
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 28
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 29
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - Inside the Design Mind
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 31
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 32
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 33
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 34
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 35
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - Design Decoded
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 37
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 38
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 39
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 40
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 41
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 42
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 43
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 44
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 45
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 46
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 47
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - Mythbusters
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 49
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 50
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - Resources
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 52
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 53
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 54
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - 55
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - Viewpoints
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - Cover3
IIDA Perspective - Spring/Summer 2012 - Cover4
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