Everything is designed. So be a designer, or think like one.

GlaserMilton Glaser – photos by Sam Haskins

According to IDEO “Thinking like a designer can transform the way organizations develop products, services, processes, and strategy.”   Wait a minute – that is taking design thinking quite far from its old comfortable world of graphics, logos, packages and annual reports – even far from cars, frocks and tableware.

Milton Glaser said “ Design is making things better.”  Well that is pretty broad.  According to Christopher Bailey CD of Burberry “you either have the world as your canvas or you have a 1 by 1 inch screen. The important thing is creating emotional reactions.”

Design has increased its power and reach. As a designer nowadays the world is your canvas. Design thinking is in every element of the customer journey.  It is in experience design and system design. Your experience in the supermarket checkout line is being designed – or at least it ought to be.  Your playlists are designed. Your life….

So if you are in the creative business, or in fact in any business, you had better be a designer, or start thinking like one. If you are not trying to make something better then you are not a designer – but of course creative minds always see something better. According to Massimo Vignelli, “The life of a designer is a life of fight. Fight against the ugliness. Just like a doctor fights against disease. For us, the visual disease is what we have around, and what we try to do is cure it somehow with design.”

But it isn’t just a visual disease that designers are treating any more – it’s the ugliness of customer service and supply chains and innovation methodology and hiring processes and yes of course, company culture.

And here is Tim Brown, CEO of IDEO in a photo by Eric Millette.  It looks as if designers are a pretty happy bunch.