Creators_Block_iTunes-01.pngWhat Inspired This Episode?

As Quintain’s art director and content manager respectively, you might say that Jessie-Lee and I have a bit of experience in the art of giving and getting feedback about our work. Unfortunately, the quality of the feedback we receive is not always created equal.

This isn’t a simple lesson of, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say something at all,” nor is it a petty diatribe against someone who didn’t like our work, so our feelings are hurt. Jessie-Lee and I are both in agreement that if you work in any sort of commercial creative discipline – especially in an agency setting – being able to ingest and react productively to constructive criticism is part of the job description. (Many times, those challenges from our clients push us to create even better work.)

In this episode, we’re talking about issues that transcend differences in aesthetic. Those instances when the “how” and “why” a nugget of feedback is delivered can be counterproductive and costly, as well as symptomatic of a much larger problem – the kind of problem that can evolve into something bigger, if left to fester.

So how can marketers and entrepreneurs who work with content creators and designers determine if the feedback loop they have in place is healthy or not? And if it isn’t, how can they fix it, so the work their teams are producing top-notch with audience persona-resonance and creativity?

Listen to this Episode:

So, What Did We Talk About?

  • Do you view your writers and designers as robots who execute?
  • Macromanaging vs. micromanaging, and how they’re both awful
  • Does our DIY culture erode the legitimacy of what we do?
  • Our biggest pet peeves with clients giving feedback
  • Why you need to start telling designers and writers your problem, not the solution
  • How perfect is the enemy of good (AKA, when good work dies in committee)
  • The difference between creating for yourself vs. creating for others
  • Why giving absolute autonomy to your designers and content creators can be the kiss of death
  • What can content creators and designers do better to improve the feedback loop?
  • How can you fix the feedback loops in your own backyard?

Here’s What We Had to Say:


“Sometimes I won’t agree with you in the moment… but ultimately, I’m mature enough to take it. I’m mature enough to say, ‘This [project] is better because you gave me the tough feedback.'”

“As a designer, I’m not a puppet. I’m a visual problem solver… tell me the problem, so I can use my expertise to solve it.”

“I find it absolutely infuriating when someone tells me to make the logo bigger. Okay, great. Sure, I have the capacity to do that. But why do you want the logo to be bigger?”

“It becomes very frustrating when you start to become an order-taker, and not somebody with a brain and a background and education, to be able to approach these things strategically.”


“Even if you don’t tell us, we know when you’re unhappy. We’re not dumb people; we spend all day giving and getting feedback.”

“I never ask a client a question I don’t want an answer to. Even if I don’t like the answer.”

“I need you to tell me what you don’t like, because it helps me to do my job better.”

“Ask yourself, do you really have an issue with the piece that’s right in front of you? Or do you have an unspoken concern about the process they’re using to begin with?”

…until next week!