Designing instruction means having a learning objective in mind, and developing with purpose a method of teaching it. It means analyzing, editing, assessing and evaluating. Reflection and further fine tuning are essential to its continued success.
To design instruction professionally, you need to have both logical and creative sides to you. You must be able to come up with an achievable, measurable goal, then analyze the needs of all parties involved from all different perspectives. Your reporting must be detailed, with Design Documents and Job Aides that easily understood yet thorough. That being said, in designing the instruction itself, and the materials used, those often take creative skills.
I’d also that being a professional instructional designer also takes patience and poise (especially among difficult clients). 🙂