This time of year is always good for catching up on my (extensive) Pocket reading backlog. In Austin Kleon's review of Witold Rybczynski's book on architecture Mysteries of the Mall: And Other Essays, he describes how too many architects see themselves as artists rather than designers of spaces for people to live and work in. He quotes from the author:
'To a degree that is not well understood, remarkable architecture is almost always the result of a dialogue between architect and client. Cut loose from this sort of creative conversation, few architects do their best work. The British architect Sir Edwin Lutyens once said, “There will never be great architects or architecture without great patrons.” The ideal project, from the architect’s point of view, is not one with an absent magnanimous client; it is one with a thoughtful magnanimous client.'
It struck me how this might describe an optimal relationship between any creative services business and their client. The secret of great output is in that ongoing conversation and challenge, and knowing when to adapt based on feedback and when to hold firm to your belief in the work that you have produced.