Value & Effort

Over at TNW, Harrison Weber ran an article after listen to a conversation over at twitter between Pat Dryburgh, Tom Creighton and Geoff Teehan. Go read them first.

Done? Well, of course a particular client–designer relationship comes to mind. Paul Rand said to Steve Jobs before NeXT identity project began:

I will solve your problem for you. And you will pay me. And you don’t have to use the solution. If you want options, go talk to other people. But I’ll solve your problem for you the best way I know how. And you use it or not. That’s up to you. You’re the client. But you pay me.

I too are starting-out right now, so, I can’t pull-off something like this, it’s Rand’s privilege for being a designer of his stature. What I’m going to do is charge client mainly based on value of my work, and with my effort as a secondary factor to add-up. Sounds greedy? No. Both value and effort are equally important, here’s an old story – which to be honest, I just happened to know without any slight trace of its origin – to further illustrate my point:

An engineer was asked to fix some trouble with heavy machinery inside a factory, he pick up a piece of chalk and marks a couple of x’es around the machine with a precise and confident manner while other on-site engineers look at those marks and reluctantly admit how they missed all those spots. After the machine got fixed, the factory owner asked this engineer to send the bill. And so he did. It cost $10,000, the owner asked him if can he breakdown this price, itemize it. The engineer said, “Sure. A dollar for a piece of chalk, and $9,999 for knowing exactly where to use the chalk to mark the spots.”

The effort of this engineer’s work were compensated with the value he gave.