Home / Tricks of the Trade / Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication Tricks of the Trade Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication 5 simple steps for a successful project By Daniel Koblenz December 2, 2019 2 min read “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” —Leonardo Da Vinci Why? Simplicity acts as a structure that makes powerful and thoughtful ideas easier to understand. But simplicity is anything but simple. It requires hard work—especially when you’re working on a complex project. And while every project is different, we’ve found an approach that seems to help streamline them across the board. 5 simple steps for a successful project Start with a brief A brief needs to be fully vetted by all key stakeholders. Including too many details can sometimes derail forward momentum on the project. As long as the key information is in the brief, remember: less is more. Always ask why There are so many whys. Why is the project important? Why have these deliverables been chosen? Why is this the requested timeline? Being able to answer “why” will help you and your team organize all information in a clear manner. Communicate honestly Set expectations, ask for help, and work together to find the solution. Rome wasn’t built in a day and it certainly wasn’t built alone. Be honest. If someone needs more time, then they simply need more time. If a timeline is unrealistic, try breaking it up, staggering dates, and setting expectations on a realistic timeline. So when the next project comes up, you’ll be set up for success. Allow time for ideation and conceptualization Ideas come at random times. For a project to be successful, it is incredibly important to let the creative process happen. You’ll come up with ideas, realize some ideas aren’t working, adjust your thinking, and repeat until you find the right solutions. Work hard and work smart Nothing ever got done right without a little elbow grease, as my granddad used to say. Great ideas may blossom overnight—however, it takes hard work to strategically put those ideas into practice. At this point you must be wondering, how does Contrast DesignWorks keep it simple? We live by the above 5 steps and this one simple motto, “work hard and be nice to people.” When clients can see that you’re committed to making their lives easier, everything else becomes easier too. Oh, and it also helps that we love what we do, genuinely enjoy spending time together, and all appreciate the simple pleasures in life.