Too much love will kill you

Mark Boulton on crafting: 

I’m more often than not in a place where my own job, as a designer, is to not make something I love. But to make something appropriate. Something that does the job well. Something that responds to a hypothesis and serves a need. Not necessarily something loved and beautiful. And that’s ok.

Mark makes a number of salient points. Where does meeting client requirements stop and making the experience 'delightful' start?

Is there an implicit requirement for consumer facing products to not just get the job done, but get it done in a way that also adds some overall brand value and good feeling?

The difficulty comes when the cost of the extra 'craft' and 'love' hasn't been factored in.

Getting an iPad transition just right can take days of tweaking, building and iterating—that same time could've potentially been spent building an additional feature and addressing an additional user need instead.

I think it's up to us as designers to be prudent and responsible about this, to make the case to our clients when we believe a bit of extra delight is good value but equally to not waste time on it if other more important problems need to be solved first.