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Build your very own seat at the strategy table

Everybody seems to be clamoring for a seat at the strategy table. It came up at the IxDA-SF talk on the Worth of Design, it’s covered in an engaging post by Josh Porter of Bokardo, and the world according to Google says that 143,000 folks are talking about it.

Um, why is everyone talking so much about The Table?

I think it’s because designers want to be involved in setting the strategic agenda and to be recognized for delivering work that is a key to making the business successful. And I believe that there’s a perception that being involved in big decisions that impact the business is critical to delivering well-designed things.

I hear folks say that design thinking is different from other kind of thinking, and that by infusing design thinking into the strategy of an organization, the business will be more innovative. The perception here is that designers are the hero best suited to use design thinking to pull the innovation sword from the strategy stone. In fact, the more I read about it, the more there is to read about it. Conversation in the blogdom is aswirl with the trifecta of seat at the table + design thinking + innovation.

Hmmm.

I’d rather play out of bounds. Instead of talking about design-with-a-capital-D, sitting at the table of power or innovation as the end-all-be-all, let’s talk about people who make things. I think designers are at their best when they make things…the other topics are important if they improve the making process…otherwise, it’s just talk.

I’ve seen designers make great impacts and thrive best when they chuck out the old and make up new rules. And I believe that people and teams who reframe the rules, change the game and make great ideas into great products get included in important conversations. Strategic conversations. You know, the ones where people decide what to do, when to do it and how to do it.

So, in the spirit of DIY, here is your very own seat at the strategy table. All you need to do is build it yourself, using the design tools of Cut + Fold + Stick:

  1. Cut through the noise and identify a clear customer need or desire that you can address with your design.
  2. Fold business metrics and goals into your design objectives and process.
  3. Stick to your guns. Prioritize and focus rigorously to move the design forward and get it built and out the door.

Get started today…build your own seat at the table!


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