Design is how it works : how the smartest companies turn products into icons / Jay Greene.

by Greene, JayLooking glass.

Publisher: New York ; Portfolio, 2010.Description: 231 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.ISBN: 1591843227; 9781591843221.Subject(s): Branding (Marketing)Looking glass | Industrial design coordinationLooking glass | Industrial design -- Case studies | New products -- Case studies
Contents:
Porsche -- Nike -- LEGO -- OXO -- REI -- Clif Bar -- Ace Hotels -- Virgin Atlantic -- The intersection of business and design.
Note: Bibliography: pages 223-224. - Includes index.
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Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

"It's not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works."-Steve Jobs

There's a new race in business to embrace "design thinking." Yet most executives have no clue what to make of the recent buzz about design. It's rarely the subject of business retreats. It's not easily measurable. To many, design is simply a crapshoot.

Drawing on interviews with top executives such as Virgin's Richard Branson and Nike's Mark Parker, Jay Greene illuminates the methods of companies that rely on design to stand out in their industries. From the experiences of those at companies from Porsche to REI to Lego, we learn that design isn't merely about style and form. The heart of design is rethinking the way products and services work for customers in real life. Greene explains how:

-Porsche pit its designers against each other to create its bestselling Cayenne SUV

-Clif listened intently to customers, resulting in the industry-changing Luna energy bar

-OXO paid meticulous attention to the details, turned its LiquiSeal mug from an abysmal failure into one of its greatest successes

-LEGO started saying no to its designers-saving its brick business in the process

Greene shows how important it is to build a culture in which design is more than an after-the-fact concern-it's part of your company's DNA. Design matters at every stage of the process. It isn't easy, and it increases costs, but it also boosts profits, sometimes to a massive extent. In an increasingly competitive marketplace, design represents the best chance you have of transcending your competitors.

Bibliography: pages 223-224. - Includes index.

Porsche -- Nike -- LEGO -- OXO -- REI -- Clif Bar -- Ace Hotels -- Virgin Atlantic -- The intersection of business and design.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Publishers Weekly Review

A series of case studies of attractive and efficient design, from journalist Greene, makes a persuasive case for regarding design as an essential component of the development process of any product, which must be attended to at all stages, not just at the end. The best service or product design, according to Greene, creates a singular experience for the customer. Through case studies of design-savvy companies like Porsche, Nike, LEGO, OXO, Clif bars, and Virgin Atlantic, Greene discusses the brands' origins and presses home the point that successful companies turn their customers into cultists of a sort, admirers of both the form and function of the products they're using. Porsche drivers love the experience of driving the car, not just its clean lines; OXO identifies its customers' cleaning pet peeves, then designs products around them; REI doesn't just sell gear but authenticity. While Greene's enthusiasm is clear, and design aficionados will lap up the case studies, the omission of prescriptive instruction and slight analysis make this a hard sell to the general reader. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

CHOICE Review

Greene (Business Week technology writer) looks at the critical role design plays in creating successful products. "Design isn't merely about making products aesthetically beautiful," notes Greene. "Design today is about creating experiences that consumers crave." Too important to be an afterthought, design has to start at the beginning of the development process, he advises. At Apple, design starts when CEO Steve Jobs and Jonathan Ives, vice president of industrial design, put their heads together to come up with something that is both simple to use and cool to have. The result is must-have products from iPhones to iPods and iPads. "Customers are willing to shell out money for goods that engage them," says Greene. These include Porsche automobiles, Nike shoes, Lego toys, and other brands as eye-appealing as they are utilitarian. But even companies with strong design orientations can stumble. Greene cites consumer electronics company Bang & Olufsen, known for beautiful and tactile products. It designed a Serene mobile phone that looked like a bird in flight but used a rotary dial ill suited for texting--a fact that ensured its failure. See related, Building Design Strategy, ed. by Thomas Lockwood and Thomas Walton (CH, Oct'09, 47-0950). Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduate and graduate marketing and design students, faculty, practitioners. P. G. Kishel Cypress College

Author notes provided by Syndetics

Jay Greene, former Seattle bureau chief for BusinessWeek and an award-winning journalist, has written about business and technology for more than two decades. He has also written for the Seattle Times , the Orange Country Register , the Cleveland Plain Dealer , and Variety . He lives in Seattle.

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