Effective communication strategies for designers | by Mary Borysova | Feb, 2024

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Did you ever have to deal with a difficult stakeholder or have to resolve conflicts within a team?

Crucial conversations are what make or break the project, the relationship, or your career. Sometimes we fail to recognize when a normal conversation becomes crucial and either relations or project success is now at stake.

These conversations at the end are what helps us progress further much more than any other design-related skills, especially when working in teams.

Communicating about designs was more important than the designs themselves –Tom Greever, Articulating Design Decisions

Disagreements are unavoidable, they happen in all teams in both high and low-design maturity companies. It’s how to manage the disagreement that matters.

Before the important conversation even starts, clarify for yourself:

  1. What do I want to reach in this communication for me? For the other person? For our relations?
  2. What do I want to avoid?
  3. How would I behave if this is what I want?

“I want to reach… while also maintaining and forming friendly kind and close relations with X. I want to avoid overspending time on ineffective discussions about…”

Keep in mind that relations may matter no less than the object of discussion and your work goals, and in some cases, they may be even more important to maintain. As you go into the conversation, you may need to return yourself to thinking about the goals if you start getting emotional.

You shared your opinion or work and now you are waiting for the feedback and further collaboration to align on the next steps. You may stumble upon some of these challenges as you communicate with the stakeholders:

1. 1. Silent stakeholder

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