Different Kinds of Strategic Design
How To Make Design Thrive in Your Enterprise
Ensure the right sponsorship from the top. Any
change, especially cultural change, creates diverse enemies who resist it.
The new design function and the new innovation culture need to be advocated
and protected by the CEO or by somebody influential enough at the executive
Establish the design function embedded inside
the business organization. It should be a peer of other key functions such
as business development, finance and marketing to be able to drive strategic
innovation 360 throughout the organization. The key pillars of a design
functions are senior leaders who run key strategic areas such as business
design, strategy innovation, organizational design, brand design, product
design, and customer experience design.
Bring in the right kind of design leaders:
who have a holistic vision, broadly skilled, cross-functionally excellent
business architects, proactive innovators who can manage all the different
phases of design in a smart entrepreneurial way. Let these leaders to build
their design teams.
Integrate several quick wins in the
implementation strategy and celebrate
to keep the spirit of the stakeholders high and to show them that you are
moving in the rights direction in the right way. Identify and implement
where you can show the value of design very
quickly inside to the stakeholders.
Learn from early successes and failures and
adapt your strategy of building
processes that can enable the new approach to
be adopted by all the stakeholders willingly. Involve them in building
a new design-friendly culture and integrating it inside the organization.
Then you need to identify quick wins: those
projects where you can show the value of design very quickly inside the
organization. On the basis of this early success, you start to build processes
that can enable the new culture and approach to be integrated inside the
Strategic design thinking can power corporate
strategy in many ways. Having realized that,
more and more organizations are creating a chief
design officer role and a top-management position.
Example: PepsiCo Chief Design Officer is tasked to
inject design thinking into nearly every aspect of the business, to
oversee design-led innovation across all the company’s brands, and to create an
organization where design can thrive. PepsiCo leveraged design to create
meaningful and relevant brand experiences for their customers any time they
interact with PepsiCo's portfolio of products. "Our work covers each brand’s
visual identity, from the product itself all the way to the marketing and
merchandising activities that bring a brand to life across different
platforms—music, sports, fashion, and so forth. This applies not only to the
current portfolio of products, but also to PepsiCo’s future portfolio. That’s
where our work is really about innovation. I strongly believe that design and
innovation are exactly the same thing. Design is more than the aesthetics and
artifacts associated with products; it’s a strategic function that focuses on
what people want and need and dream of, then crafts experiences across the full
brand ecosystem that are meaningful and relevant for customers," says Mauro
Porcini, the first-ever PepsiCo’s Chief Design Officer.
PROTOTYPES Speed Up the Innovation Process
Design, as any innovation, relies on the prototyping process. Without a
can talk and talk about a new design
for ages. A prototype of something that never existed before excites people,
inspires collaboration and
speeds up the innovation process.
It unlocks resources and
HOLISTIC DESIGNS Inspire Cross-functional Collaboration
Holistic design of an innovative product, service or solution and turning it to
a systemic innovation 360 can align the full organization around it.
which can create a lot of value inside organizations because it aligns the full
organization around one idea. For instance, if I say “knife,” you are going to
visualize a kind of knife. I’m going to visualize another knife, and if there
were other people in the room, they would visualize many different kinds of
knives. But if I design a knife right now, I align everybody around that knife.
Let’s say that in the room there is a marketer who tells me the brand is not
visible enough. There is an ergonomist who tells me the handle is not
comfortable enough. There is a scientist who tells me the blade is not sharp
enough. These are not mistakes. They’re not failures in the process. They’re how
prototyping surfaces issues that don’t emerge in the abstract. That’s the power
of design and prototyping.
Yin and Yang
A book for design and creative professionals. The field of strategic design is
growing. More and more organizations are asking designers to apply their
principles, practices, tools and methods to help co-define and co-implement
their (innovation) strategies and help organizations to become design-led.
Strategic Design is about application of design principles and practices to
guide business design, strategy development and implementation toward innovative
outcomes that benefit all stakeholders.
"Fluent in visual representation, the strategic designer uses this skill as an
important and iterative means of communicating complex, even contradictory,
Good ideas are easy to come by: implementing the right ones is not. In recent
years, the emphasis on “design thinking” has powerfully demonstrated the value
of applying creativity in a business context.
But successful design is not only about creative thinking. It also involves
implementation and ensuring that key ideas maintain their integrity during that
process. Designers must be involved over the duration of change processes,
providing constant expertise and feedback to identify, test, and deliver durable