Investing in design

“When you’re investing in design, you’re really investing in your relationship with the rest of the world”

- Robert Brunner, The Chase Jarvis LIVE Show

Whilst this idea has been true since the birth of design (which let’s be honest was more or less the dawn of human history), it has only truly become apparent to many companies and brands in the past few decades. With ever-improving technology, companies have developed more and more touch points with consumers.

These touch points are no longer limited to the product, store and website but now extend to the mobile experience, social media presence, the company’s employee reviews on Glassdoor and shortly, how responsive their interfaces are with AR (augmented reality). The realisation that design is an investment has been key to providing a “seat at the table” for designers with many becoming integral parts of the management or even founding team of a business (AirBnb’s Joe Gebbia).

Many fear the oncoming wave of AI, terrified that it will render humans useless, with all of our precious jobs going to the machines, never to be seen again. Whilst I think the bell may be tolling for many accountants and bankers, Robert Brunner’s perspective gave me heart that we designers might just be okay.

As AI helps develop technological innovations which we mere humans could never conceive of on our own, each innovation just opens up another touch point between our company and the rest of the world. If our job as designers is to enhance this relationship, then I say, the design revolution is just getting started.