Management Tip of the Day: Get what you need from design

Fri Jun 24, 2011 7:11pm EDT
 
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BOSTON (Reuters Life!) - There are many ways to fail at design, even though good design can lift a company's performance from lackluster to outstanding, says Harvard Business Review.

The Management Tip of the Day offers quick, practical management tips and ideas from Harvard Business Review and HBR.org (http:\\www.hbr.org). Any opinions expressed are not endorsed by Reuters.

"While the business world may have developed a full-blown love affair with design, very few companies are doing it well. If you're taking on a corporate design effort, follow these three rules:

1. Don't design for everybody. Design succeeds when it serves as a differentiator. A Ferrari, while beautifully designed, is not for everyone. Nor is a minivan. Tightly define who you are designing for and why.

2. Don't try to be Apple. Good design needs to be aligned with the company's purpose and values. Delivering an Apple-like experience is not sustainable for most companies because they don't have the culture or resources to support it. Know your company's limits and deliver within them.

3. Don't treat it as an add-on. Design isn't just bells and whistles you add at the end or put into your existing processes-most companies need to transform to accommodate it. Be open to change."

-Today's management tip was adapted from "Five Ways to Fail at Design" by Sohrab Vossoughi.

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