JJ Acuña: NO
“The client is not always right—and neither are we. A project is always about a negotiation between two parties to find the best and most elegant and aesthetic solution. It’s actually everybody’s job to be comfortable with saying ‘no’. If the design doesn’t make sense, support the brief, give a solution to the brief—or if the brief is always changing, the client should say ‘no’ to keep challenging the designer.
Simply put, the client is always right when it comes to the understanding of their own needs for a project, but whenever a designer says ‘no’, they should offer five to ten new options as an alternate solution to the ‘no’. Instead of just stopping an idea in its tracks, a ‘no’ should become the seed to grow more solutions, ideas and concepts. ‘No’ is not the end of the road—‘no’ should be the start of a new path to a better design.
Ann Chan Lu, CEO of Hero Design Group, goes head-to-head with JJ Acuña, founder of the JJ Acuña Bespoke Studio, in this month’s great debate