A hammer is a tool that does what you tell it to. Hit that nail into that board. I will use my muscle and force to drive the hammer into you (the nail) until I deem you fit and I will do the same with all your buddy nails in the box. The nail has little choice but to do the hammer’s will. A graphic designer is the nail and management is the hammer, each listening to the operator. Often times the designer loses all sense of pride after the hammer is done driving it into the plank. Sometimes there is no “heart” in a graphic designer. They simply have to follow instructions in order to feel like they are worth something. Some designers are happy to be the nail. They feel secure in knowing that their purpose is served. The term “make the logo bigger” is always followed with a prompt “yes boss.” A graphic designer isn’t making a change – they are following orders.
A creative is different.
The creative will tell the hammer to go away, or simply ignore the pounding because they feel in their heart that selling out is wrong. A creative will fight to keep the logo smaller, and the message clearer and the finished product prettier; they know that selling out will make things look cluttered and dirty. They will look at the point of view of the nail, the hammer, the person holding the hammer, the plank and the finished product; and they can change the outcome for the better because they have to. They come up with the ideas and the plans to take your business farther. You pay an ad agency the money they deserve because they are worth every penny.
You can get away with paying a graphic designer a lower wage because they do what they are told, and you will find that you pay a creative a higher wage because they make a difference in the way you think and your company is run. You can be a hammer that expects to always be listened to, or you can accept that sometimes someone out there will call you out and tell you that the plank is full of wasted nails, and in order to move forward, you need to change the way your mind works.
Life is too short to not create something of worth, and each of us is worth more than we think we are.