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Project Management – Avoiding the failure that is "Design by Committee"

Design is subjective by nature. As a result everybody has a point of view as to what they do and don't like which is fine and healthy. Often however politics slips in through the back door with dilution and compromise the end result as various unplanned, opinion based twists and turns take the ship off it's agreed course. I'm pretty sure this is one of the contributing factors in most web projects ending up safe, dull, late, slightly fragmented and lacking any spark of individuality.

Too many Cooks?

Wikipedia defines a few of the negatives as "Needless complexity, internal inconsistency, logical flaws, banality, and the lack of a unifying vision" which is pretty accurate and very sad as the end result is something that usually loses it's connection to the original vision. Project Stakeholders (and Designers) become frustrated, disenchanted and ultimately disenfranchised.

Does the CEO's wife's friend really know best?

The answer of course is to run the project as a loving dictatorship, where the the committee have an opinion but one which is always tested against the yardstick of the original vision. If an opinion is valid it will stand up to scrutiny and may well provide a valuable influence that improves the end result. But that must be the decision of a pre-elected leader ONLY if the dream is to be realised and the design strengthened rather than diluted by too many separate viewpoints being shoe horned into the process.

We Create...

  • Democratic dictatorships
  • Unity through diplomacy
  • Projects that finish on time and in budget
  • Designs that encapsulate the original vision


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