News|General|23 Oct 2019|James Hall

Design Strategy? What??!

I have an inner concern that’s painfully linked to your design strategy. Do you have one? Most will say, “yes of course”, but in reality, when I dig further its neither complete, documented or visible.

In my 18 years working both within companies and consulting for companies, it hurts to say this. In fact, given the industry we passionately work within I find it rather strange. Why? Because a design strategy fundamentally gives ‘design’ a reason to exist, work, deliver results and add value to a company or user experience.

The good news is that more often than not, a great design strategy already exists. It just happens to reside, tacitly, in the minds of one or two design leaders. And therein lies the challenge – and the opportunity.

Putting strategy to work

Ask any design leader about their design vision, mission and goals for the immediate 1-3 years and I guarantee you’ll be immediately engaged with great passion and opinion for the next 30-plus minutes. Great!

However, not so great when design professionals or colleagues are not in regular contact with said leaders to share and embrace such thinking, goals & planned activities. And also not so great when other functions have even less time to engage with it.

So that’s the challenge.. or the opportunity! Well, as design professionals most of us have spent our careers visualizing often complex subject matter, bringing ideas and concepts to life. Why not do the same for our design strategy?

Creating the roadmap

A design strategy should (like any other strategy) have a companying design vision, mission & goals. Furthermore it should be directly linked to the people it will serve, describing the broad steps needed to achieve identified design goals, clearly highlighting the key activities needed for success and enablers to support it.

So why not create a roadmap that does precisely that? After all, if you don’t write your strategy down (digitally or physically) and share it regularly, there’s little chance that your peers will truly remember it, embrace it or act upon it.

The really good news is that here at PARK we’ve done the hard work for you – in the shape of the Design Strategy Compass.

This tool helps design leaders capture their thoughts and place them in the context of a clear and connected design strategy – whatever the wider business interests may be.

I’ve tried it and it really does work. So why not give it a go?

Contact us to learn more.

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