How Do You Want It?

Fast. Cheap. Great.

Unless we’re talking about food, I have a hard time thinking of an example when all three come into play. And having said that, I’m sure some of you may be questioning my culinary credibility.

Last week I received printer samples for a direct mailer I designed. I was less than thrilled with results. However, the job needed to be completed quickly and cheaply. Hearing my complaints, a coworker recalled the following graphic.

How Do You Want Your Design?

Designed (and available for purchase ) by Colin Harman, this Venn diagram doesn’t just illustrate the limits of design in the creative process. Like my experience with the printer, this can be applied to many life situations. Need a haircut fast and cheap? I know I’m not the only one who’s left the salon dipped in ugly sauce. Need an electrical repair done yesterday? Start deciding which arm and a leg you’re prepared to part with. Looking for some awesome tickets at a rock bottom price? I’ll let you explain to junior why he won’t be seeing Elmo for his birthday.

And what about the unattainable trifecta, fast, cheap and great, does it truly exist? I’d like to think, yes, but it’s probably rare. Perhaps I need to take the advice of my own culinary utopia and ‘Live Más!’ (heh).