Just as you wouldn’t rush cooking a chicken, you never want to rush the design process. Good design needs time to marinate—to soak up as much goodness as it possibly can. Otherwise, you’ll end up with a subpar design that won’t convert (and a raw, undercooked chicken).

Whether we like it or not, everything seems to be moving faster these days. From getting paid to keeping up with your peers, buying a home or buying a book, we’re never not thinking about pleasure principle. With the click of a button, you’ve got your hands on almost anything you could possibly need (hey Amazon Prime, Uber Eats and Instagram 👋).

So, as you can imagine, it’s no different with design. You either sink or swim in this fast-paced current. Being fast is rewarded with instant gratification and career promotions. It’s like a competition, and the one who crams the most in one day gets first prize.

But with more tasks and a packed schedule, we’re doing more harm than good. Simply put, we’re giving ourselves less time to pay attention to what actually matters. Under pressure, you’re susceptible to making more mistakes and not being able to catch them in time. We’re so hyper-focused on rushing everything in our day-to-day, there’s barely any time to live. Not enough time to eat? Get it delivered or grab fast food. Not enough time to meet up with your friends? Just text them. Not enough time to pay for a thoughtful design? Rush someone or go to Creative Market.

Here’s how the design process should look like:

Let’s take a look at what each of these steps mean…

  1. Define the Problem: Figure out what the client needs, look through a creative brief, and get the client’s budget/deadline for project.
  2. Research: Gather as much inspiration and information as possible—information on competitors, trends, the consumer, etc. Put together a Pinterest board or have the client provide one. Conceptualize what the project will look like.
  3. Sketch: Using a pencil and paper, roughly sketch out the concepts.
  4. Develop: Transport the strongest sketches into digital.
  5. Present Ideas and Get Feedback: Present designs to the client (preferably in person, but usually through email) and take notes on any feedback they might have.
  6. Revise: Make revisions to the design based on client feedback.
  7. Deliver: Send off any files the client asked for or might need.

Pretty in-depth, right? Not to mention, all of these steps are incredibly necessary!

With that being said, here’s what a design process looks like when it’s rushed:

Notice the difference?

Here are the benefits of a non-rushed project:

  • Less mistakes being made. More time to catch them.
  • Ideas are able to generate and marinate longer so they’ll have the best possible outcome. This way, there’s less strain on the creative mind to come up with something fast for a deadline. Instead, the client will receive an idea that’s thorough and original.
  • The client gets exactly what they paid for—quality, eye-catching work to attract more clients.

The best type of work is thoughtfully crafted work. Thoughtfully crafted work comes with time and patience. Sure, you may think you don’t have enough time to slow down—but making the effort will always pay off in the long run.