According to Wikipedia:
Design by committee is a term referring to a style of design and its resultant output when a group of entities comes together to produce something, particularly in the presence of poor and incompetent leadership. The defining characteristics of “design by committee” are needless complexity, internal inconsistency, logical flaws, banality, and the lack of a unifying vision.
I couldn’t put it better myself really. While I wear many professional hats these days–creative director, project manager, HR, office therapist, etc.–when I started this whole wild journey I was primarily driven by a love for art and graphic design. This evolved into a desire to bring this high-tech art to the web in order to facilitate and enhance the user experience. I care about aesthetics. I care about color, composition and how these subtleties resonate with the intended audience. What may be a home run for one client’s website audience could easily be all wrong for anothers, as evidenced by the broad range of designs in our portfolio, from a Russian beauty product site to a Twilight enthusiast social network.
I’ve run into a few frustrating “design by committee” situations with clients. One organization actually showed our initial layout mock-up to a room full of complete strangers who were renting their conference room and sent us their feedback. Hmmm. Frequently some of our start-up clients pass our designs around their circle of friends and family, and while certainly everyone is entitled to an opinion, not everyone is tapped into the big picture of what we’re doing, which is integral to giving quality feedback. (more…)