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Tim Brown: Design is key to success in complex, volatile world

Tim Brown, CEO of IDEO, lectures at Herald Corp.’s 60th celebrations. (Park Hae-mook/The Korea Herald)
Tim Brown, CEO of IDEO, lectures at Herald Corp.’s 60th celebrations. (Park Hae-mook/The Korea Herald)

In today’s society and the ever more complex and volatile business world, design can provide creative solutions to tackle the complexities organizations face, according to Tim Brown, CEO of IDEO.

“Design has never been more influential in the world of business,” said Brown during a ceremony marking the 60th anniversary of Herald Corp. on Monday in Seoul.

In a 15-minute speech, Brown, a leading figure in design thinking, gave a quick preview of his lecture on design-led innovations, which he will give Tuesday as part of the Herald Design Forum.

“We need tools of design to solve problems in new ways whether it’s healthcare, education or fine art,” he said.

He introduced a survey of 100 CEOs around the world on corporate environment, who agreed that the business world has never been more complex.

“Companies rise and fall quickly than ever before because markets are volatile. Financial markets are volatile and technology is changing extremely quickly,” he said. “And the most important way to tackle the complexity is through creativity.”

Brown mentioned Toyota as a company that changed its production system to ensure quality in automobile manufacturing.

“A complex world can only be navigated by organizations that constantly create,” he noted.

Speed is another key factor to keep in mind in creating changes in the new era corporate organizations face.

“Somebody in the world is producing a new idea every minute,” he noted. “We can expect in the future, design innovation to be happening faster and faster and spreading more quickly,” he said.

The emergence of social media and the development of technologies are handing people the most creative tools to come up with new inventions and innovations.

Brown stressed that in that environment, one way to survive is through collaboration and partnerships with other companies and brands.

Creativity should also be encouraged inside of organizations as well.

“We will have to spend much of our time concerned with not only product, innovation and brand strategies, but also trying to enhance and enable the creative confidence of our organization,” he said. “Leaders will encourage creativity in their organizations so that they are adaptive enough to succeed in the 21st century.” 

By Lee Woo-young
Korea Herald Youtube