Observation and Design

Richard Stowey's localised view of the world.

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Everyone can be a Designer

November 14th, 2010 @ 12:55 BST by Richard Stowey

This recent video talks about how business people need to become designers. I feel strongly that design is part of my role as a digital project manager, and there are multitudes of opportunities to design within any job role.

Roger Martin, Dean of Rotman School of Management, explains that traditionally business people take an analytical view of the world, and base future planning on past results. That knowledge, together with innovative and design thinking, can be used as an insight into creating new products and services. This thought process shouldn’t be restricted to business people though. I believe that to some degree anyone can be a designer, or use design within their work.

For example, within the digital marketing world where I spend all of my work day:

  • Account Directors / Managers / Executives are able to help clients to work out new marketing strategies, react to impartial insights into a campaign or business justification for a project. They work with clients to design outcomes to an idea.
  • Project Managers / Producers work hard at the beginning of the project to understand the requirements and put those into a structured format, designing the architecture, functionality and order of production.
  • Designers are of course creating the visual appearance of a website or application, but there is more to it than that. They design the navigation, the user experience, the method by which people are expected to find the information they are looking for.
  • Developers take their opportunity to design the method of production, the specific methods by which people will input data, manage content and the technical elements of final delivery.
  • Search / SEO Specialists design keyword strategies and systems to appropriate meta data into websites. They also design metrics by which those are measured and a tactical plan to achieve those.

Design is used by almost everyone within their work day, whether a little bit or a lot. It’s available to everyone.

More videos from the same video series can be found here: design does matter!

  • mark hankins

    Surely as a web professional you can’t advicate business people getting involved in design? That’s like getting designers involved in financial forecasts. You end up with a jack-of-all-trades and a master of none!

  • http://www.richardstowey.co.uk Richard Stowey

    I’m not necessarily suggesting that people change their career paths, but merely embrace design thinking in order to approach problems to find solutions.

    In the same vein, designers could do well to apply some logical, business, thinking to their endavours too.