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About Design Management

Design Management uses right brain processes to solve left brain problems. This is a screen grab of the top results of an online search for “design management.” There are more report-like documents than pretty designs, suggesting the outcome of a Design Management project is a report rather than an object.

Design Management incorporates design thinking, service design, and sustainability. It produces and manages information, services, and experiences. DM advocates and promotes design as a key differentiator and driver of organizational success.

Rethink expertise. It’s very easy to think that you are the expert on your own product. But that’s a myth: the true experts are your customers.
Jamie Wong (Vayable)

Design Management incorporates design thinking, service design, and sustainability. It produces and manages information, services, and experiences. DM advocates and promotes design as a key differentiator and driver of organizational success.

DM links design, innovation, technology, management, and customers to provide a competitive advantage across the “triple bottom line”: social/cultural, environmental, and economic.


Who are design managers?
Design managers lead design firms and design teams in creative industries. Design managers are brand mnanagers, creative directors, design directors, heads of design, design strategists, design researchers, and managers and executives responsible for making decisions on how design is used throughout an organization. 

Design department managers, brand managers, creative directors, design directors, heads of design, design strategists, design researchers, and managers and executives responsible for making decisions on how design is used in an organization.


The importance of accurately perceiving and assessing quality
Design managers work with and lead others to develop superior business solutions. To be an effective leader, it is necessary to have two things: a refined and elevated sense of excellence, and a refined and elevated sense of mediocrity (average, unremarkable). The best way to learn relative quality is to compare your work to others’ in your immediate environment, that is, comparing it to your classmates’ work. Our students learn about assessment, responsibility, and comparative, relative quality. By these means, you will be most able to improve the quality of your own thinking.


Understanding what design management is and how it can help you in your career are described in these videos:

Videos

Portrait of a Design Manager

Karl Heine Profile