The brief should provide a clear understanding of what the client wants from the project. There should be no need for second-guessing (What do they mean by a healing environment?) or reading between the lines.Consistent Requirements should not be in conflict with one another and there should be consistency in the use of terminology and units of measurement (e.g. not using usable floor area on one page and net floor area on another).Concise The design team should not be overloaded with information. There is no need to include all the briefing data in the brief (e.g. all the occupancy measurements, interview reports, etc.). Presenting aggregated data and conclusions should be sufficient.Complete The brief should provide all the information that design teams need for their design process, on all relevant topics, to avoid any surprises later in the process. That does not mean, however, that every detail needs to be covered.Concrete Requirements should be concrete and precisely worded, leaving no room for misinterpretation. Broad statements like the building should be of high quality or spaces should be functional should be avoided.Credible The contents of the brief should be credible in the sense that they should be realistic and feasible. Requirements and ambitions should match the projects budget and the brief should have been formally approved by the projects leadership.Compelling At its best, a design brief provides not only information and instructions, but also inspiration. Well written texts, good graphics and challenging ideas will help to generate enthusiasm for the project and to kick-start the design process.Communication checklistTo be an effective means of communication, a design brief should follow the so-called seven Cs of good communication. 62