Main Content


Working with clients on better briefs

You can’t underestimate the impact of a brief. It can be the springboard for delivering the right – or the wrong – design work.

Good briefs and good briefings are not a ‘nice to have’ – they are a vital part of the business of design. Better briefs produce better results, faster. They stimulate more effective creative solutions and more effective ways of getting to them.

A good brief also provides the basis for good client agency relationships, establishing a way to evaluate the creative and keep everyone on track – both client and agency.

Join us at this half-day workshop with The Complete Brief, partners Kate Blandford and Wendy Lanchin. They will share strategies to cut down on wasted time and effort that can bog down creative development, and show you how to build a new way of working where briefs provide inspiration rather than frustration.

The workshop will cover:

The two key inputs to developing great briefs:

1. How to ensure you get better briefs from your clients:

  • How to ask the right questions.
  • How to understand the context of the brief.
  • Getting to the real client agenda – identifying the stakeholders and their input.
  • Unearthing the real brief – what change does the creative have to effect.

2. How to write better briefs for the creative team:

  • Understanding the role of the brief.
  • Developing a narrative basis for the brief.
  • Finding the heart of the brief.
  • Identifying and writing the key inputs to the brief.
  • Developing the right brief and briefing format for your agency.
What you will leave with:
  • An understanding of the kind of brief you’ve got and whether to challenge it or not.
  • A framework for analysing and interrogating client briefs.
  • Techniques to help identify the change that the creative needs to address.
  • Enhanced skills and ways into discussions around briefs with your clients.
  • Tools to help you develop better creative briefing processes.

Managing creative development and client expectations of the creative output is a crucial part of the client agency relationship. Robust, inspirational briefs that everyone has bought into are at the heart of this and will deliver the best results.


About: Kate Blandford

Kate has worked in the design business for over 20 years in both agency and client businesses. She has an in depth understanding of the key drivers of internal teams and agencies. This gives her great insight into what makes a successful dialogue between those delivering and receiving a brief – one that nurtures and facilitates the creation of great design work, born of in-depth customer insight and brand understanding.

Kate has previously worked as the Head of Packaging Design for Sainsbury’s (Nov 2000 – June 2008) where she won DBA Design Effectiveness Awards for Sainsbury’s SO organic in 2006 and Sainsbury’s Taste the difference in 2007. She is a registered expert on the Design Business Association Experts Register as well as an accredited Design Associate for the Design Council’s Design Leadership Programme.


About: Wendy Lanchin

Wendy has worked for both creative agencies and client companies, as both marketing and planning director. She has therefore had first-hand experience of how key business drivers need to fuel creative development and how to interpret this for creative teams. She has both developed and delivered briefs for brands and communication campaigns and has also extensive experience in analysing and commissioning research.

Her previous roles have included Planning Director at McCann Erickson and Publicis, Head of Marketing at Channel 4 TV, Director of Marketing at The Design Council and Director of Planning & Strategy for The Marketing Store.


Available as a half-day in-house session for a group of 6 or more. Prices per person:

  • Standard rate £380+vat (£456)
  • DBA members £245+vat (£294)

We are able to offer the following discount structure to the standard ticket price, based on the numbers attending the session:

  • 8-10 people – 5% discount
  • 11+ people – 10% discount

To discuss availability, please contact us at or call 020 7251 9229.

All DBA events and training courses are subject to standard terms and conditions which can be read in full here.

Image credits: © Elenabsi


We use cookies to help improve our website. By continuing to use this website, you agree to our use of cookies.