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  • Charles and Ray Eames were more than just furniture designers.

  • They were designed superheroes.

  • Even if you've never heard their names, I'm sure you've seen their amazing Eames Lounge chair, one of my favorites shaped by bending and molding plywood.

  • This husband and wife duo went down in design history because they were the first to create functional, affordable modern furniture for American middle class households.

  • But it was more than just furniture that used their creative process to solve problems, large problems and they use, designed to affect ecosystems of opportunity.

  • Sure, they may cool furniture, but they were also artists, filmmakers, scientists, and they ran their for much like a one stop shop for all types of creative collaborations.

  • They worked with big companies that worked with the likes of IBM.

  • They worked with Boeing and even the U.

  • S government, and they showed us that design could solve problems beyond just the physical object.

  • They took a holistic approach toward addressing human needs, and they changed the way in which we lived in our homes, how we did business and how we saw the world.

  • Now, when I reflect on the legacy of the themes provided I am deeply excited by the depth of design contributions they brought to bear.

  • Yet I still think there's a lot of misconceptions out there about what design really is and who designers really are.

  • Design is not some sketch artist with a note pad.

  • It's much bigger than that.

  • Design unlocks solutions to our problems, which is what?

  • Which is why I believe that design is not only important but absolutely necessary to achieve success in business.

  • Designers really do have superpowers that unlocks solutions and informed smart strategies that can cut through the noise and helped lead business in the right direction.

  • Let me be even more direct.

  • If you want to succeed in business, you must.

  • I mean, you must connect your product, your service, your digital platform to your audience.

  • It's really about mapping to their needs, and it's a personal relationship they've come to expect.

  • Design plays a huge role in shaping those emotional connections.

  • Now, today, in business, I think you're seeing more designers earning seats at the strategy table.

  • Now I think that's fantastic, not just because I'm a designer, but because I've been able to see designed super powers through a few different angles.

  • Before I became a designer, I was a mechanical engineer in the nuclear industry, and after that experience I worked in business.

  • And while I think it's smart business to ensure designers are at that table, there's just one problem.

  • This means that over time the designer all of a sudden becomes the creative expert on the team, and that means she starts to wear more hats.

  • And for those that don't fully understand design, let alone the different types of designers, it's all too easy to sort of read into the designers natural ability to get up and work the white board or scribble a bunch of post it notes for the team brainstorm.

  • Or, we might think of designed for outdated notions of what a design project may have been in the past.

  • Like Design Me a Cup or design me a banner ad.

  • And when this happens, we're not leveraging designed to its full potential, and businesses might be missing out on some real opportunities.

  • These are people with really deep superpowers, and I think that if we can better understand the superpowers and how they work, we'll all benefit when we treat designers as the problem solvers they are and give their superpowers room to thrive.

  • So with that, let's take a peek underneath the cape.

  • Designers have X ray vision.

  • Yep, it's true often in business.

  • We like to surveys and focus groups to give us a sense of what customers want.

  • But in reality, people have a hard time talking about their problems, little on coming up with solutions to fall for them.

  • Remember the first smart phones?

  • If, if I were to ask early cell phone users what they wanted in a phone before the release of the iPhone, they would have asked for bigger thumb keypads.

  • And I know I got big thumbs.

  • This is where designers X ray vision comes in handy.

  • Designers like strategic designers or even ethnographic specialists are specifically trained that tap into the implicit behaviors attitudes, motivations affecting People in the design world would call this uncovering the deeper Y.

  • My design team used their X ray vision to help a restaurant chain transformed the way that they attract and retain new customers.

  • We now I'm sure most chains push menu items or new special deals all the time.

  • Just a hope, just with the hope of inspiring customer loyalty, and I think that a lot of us have received the spam emails whenever we buy anything, let alone over an app.

  • But this particular restaurant chain wanted to deliver super deep, personalized experiences down to the individual level, whether it be through email or over the application or even in the restaurant while attempting to throw technology at that opportunity, we made room for the strategic designers to come in and do their thing and threw ethnographic research.

  • They really honed in on the tension between customers, appetites for personalized rewards and not wanting the digital experience to feel creepy or annoying.

  • So imagine getting a marketing offer that mistakes you for vegan just because you didn't eat meat that one Tuesday or getting a two for one deal that mistakes your regular lunch friend for your wife.

  • It's creepy to say the least, and personalization quickly gets creepy and goes there whenever we have more information than you expect us to know.

  • Or we have information that you never allowed us tohave.

  • So our design team really explored and prototype a bunch of scenarios to explore that delicate balance, and our insights helped us create a machine learning platform that would balance customer permissions with the real time context, we can safely infer about each customer and the user experience of that platform, and then allow customers ability to opt in and share little bits of personal information about themselves with the clear expectation force for a benefit coming back in return.

  • So this notion of giving a little to get a little to really sort of hone in on this balance of rewards versus privacy was very important.

  • If we do that in small doses, we can build a relationship based on trust.

  • And I can say that this restaurant chain has now successfully using the platform thanks to the right human centered guide rails set by our design team.

  • Not so creepy anymore, huh?

  • Designers have shape shifting skills.

  • They're excellent at Mimic Re, and what they're trying to do is really emulate the behavior of their subjects that they're designing for, so that we understand what's happening with them.

  • This is more than just putting yourself in someone else's shoes.

  • That's empathy, and it's great.

  • But what's even better is making empathy tangible.

  • Turning feelings into products and service is, is the real superpower here.

  • So my company helped launch a platform with a medical device company aimed to help chronic back pain sufferers.

  • And in order to design the right platform, we had to understand what back pain was like for the patient as well as what it was like for the physician treating that patient.

  • One of my strategic designers signed up because he had back surgery in the past.

  • He knew what it was like to sit in bed or lie in bed, immobile for three days and not having help around him.

  • Another experienced designer used his method acting training to get himself in the mindset of the physician.

  • And he studied the science of chronic back pain so much to a level that he was almost a doctor in med school.

  • And he was able to talk to physicians more like appear rather than from a naive place.

  • And using these techniques, they're the team was able to break down the friction at a much deeper level.

  • Physicians were frustrated because patients couldn't recount their medical history in a accurate way.

  • They didn't have the vocabulary, and they couldn't express it in a framework that resonated with the doctor.

  • Patients were frustrated because physicians kept asking questions they couldn't answer.

  • So we designed an easy logging tool that would enable the patient too easily log their pain and attempted treatments remedies all while delivering personal insights on ways that they can reduce their pain through a wide range of alternative treatments.

  • And then we'd roll up that medical history for the doctor and indigestible way.

  • We initially thought the physicians would have liked to see all the data and fancy charts and graphs.

  • But upon co creating with them, we zeroed in on the key metrics that mattered in large font color coded for severity sake and with directional arrows to highlight the big trends.

  • This made it digestible and super fast for the doctor to get that read.

  • Well, with over 150,000 patients and over 4000 physicians on the platform since it launched a couple months ago, and even better hearing stories of people's lives being changed, pain reduction, learning, healthy habits, we can truly say that we built the right platform to bridge the gaps.

  • Superhero designers can wave their pencil and make others superhuman, building on the first superpowers we can design experiences that move people into a state of flow.

  • What I mean by Flo Flo is that happy state of deep concentration and complete absorption.

  • With the task at hand, I didn't come up with that.

  • That was esteemed author me Hi Chick sent me high, but we've all felt flow at some point or another.

  • Flow is that pianist who's tryingto perfect their peace and doesn't realize that he's working through the entire night trying to do it.

  • Flow is the surgeon that's about to head into a complicated surgery, but she's fine because of the mastery that's been built into her hands from several surgeries.

  • Prior flow is that sweet spot between experiencing high challenge and demonstrating high skill.

  • But when we think about all the products that we use in our lives, very few move us into that delicate place where we can truly unlock our human potential.

  • Endurance running is a personal passion of mine.

  • So when it came time for me to design something for my thesis in design school, I wanted to create something for endurance runners to move to this beautiful place of flow.

  • And when we run a lot of us would carry music and coaching applications into the run.

  • But when I think about having the drag out my big iPhone, unlike the screen poking out a couple laps while I'm running, it takes me out of my groove, let alone my stride.

  • And so one thing I should say also is that I'm not against having music and APS on the run.

  • But what gets in the way of my superhuman flow is the interface.

  • And so, after countless iterations, I designed a finger mounted wearable where you could control your applications, but without having to look at a screen and without having to break your natural running form.

  • You stay in flow just by putting a few tactile buttons at the right location on the finger.

  • We can now imagine a runner staying in flow with the help of music or a digital coach.

  • Designers have extrasensory perception.

  • What they're trying to do is think of all the ways to design for what makes us human and designed for a multiple senses.

  • Just because we live in a digital age doesn't mean that we everything that we create, must be an APP or a website.

  • The best designers keep in mind what makes us human.

  • They designed for our hopes, our fears and our multiple senses.

  • I have a friend by the name of Jerry Will Mink, who started a wearables company wise where with the goal of creating personal lifelines for loved ones in emergency situations and his first offering was a connected bracelet aimed at the young, fashionable woman's consumer.

  • And this bracelet was a bit different than most wearables and that I didn't have any flashy lights or fancy displays.

  • It just looked the part of normal jewelry.

  • And would it?

  • Succeeded in doing, though, was helping give women peace of mind's whenever they're walking alone on a dark street.

  • All she had to do was tapped the bracelet to leave GPS bread crumbs of her exact location for our loved ones to know exactly where she is a smart design solution that embraced physical and digital possibilities to take fear out of a potentially scary situation.

  • So, in a way, we all have superpowers, don't we?

  • An economist can sense the recession's coming just by looking at signals from the marketplace.

  • A physical therapist can eliminate our neck pain just by making one small tweak to our posture.

  • A language translator can may not realize that she's actually bridging relationships across oceans just by her deep translation skills.

  • These air stories we all share where are superpowers make the difference.

  • But in order for us to benefit from someone superpowers, we have to give them room to breathe.

  • Imagine if we gave that room.

  • Two designers.

  • What could be possible?

  • Make these superpowers make these design superpowers a requirement in your business in your startup, in your enterprise.

  • But give them a platform to be successful.

  • And in doing so, this will ensure our innovations don't just lead us to some place.

  • They lead us to the right place.

  • Thank you.

Charles and Ray Eames were more than just furniture designers.

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デザインの4つの超大国|ケビン・ベチューン|TED Institute (The 4 superpowers of design | Kevin Bethune | TED Institute)

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    林宜悉 に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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