Hello, I’m New Here

Nice to meet you

This is my first week as a strategic design intern. A week ago, I had no idea that such a thing existed.

I ended up at Navicet thanks to a mixture of immense luck, my own relentless curiosity, and a well-functioning online alumni database. Peter and Lauren are alumni of my school, College of the Atlantic. We share the pain (Lauren says the “privilege”) of having to explain to others that our school only has one major, which is Human Ecology, and that our major is not focused on a single field of study but encompasses all fields of study. I usually just tell people that I’m studying Politics.

When I first met Peter, he gave me an explanation of what Navicet does. It sounded good: “Navicet, a strategic design consultancy that helps build design-led organizations in order to create business value.” I nodded in agreement and thought I understood, but it wasn’t until I observed Navicet’s Design for Business Value Boot Camp that I was able to link it all together.

It’s strange to see a room of full grown adults laugh like children at their wobbly spaghetti tower and think that their experience is somehow transformative. While fun, this kind of hands-on design experience often surfaces self-reflective questions about their past work — Could I have collaborated more effectively? How could the process have gone smoother? What would have happened if we had considered how to measure the project before we started?

The first encounter with strategic design often leads to a flash of recognition — the design practices that people are learning make perfect sense to them, but, for some reason, the practices are not reflected in how they normally work. The ideas seem intuitive and familiar, common sense, similar to the way a child goes about learning, an approach to learning that we, as responsible, credible adults, have lost over time. This recognition raises awareness about how they’ve done their work so far, while also inspiring an excitement about what can be accomplished in the future. It’s a rare thing to see. I was intrigued at the prospect of working with Navicet, and how spending the summer with them, might change not only the way I work, but also, the way I think.

Interested in seeing the results yourself? We’re running a Design for Business Value Boot Camp next month. Please check it out and sign up, and remember to tell them who sent you. It’ll make me look good.

So, for the next three months, I’ll be a part of the Navicet team. To start, I’ll help with marketing, like curating content for our social media platforms and posting the occasional blog post. If you’re a client or a workshop attendee, I might even get to meet you in person. I would love to hear your thoughts about strategic design, so please, reach out to Navicet on Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook or send me an email directly at ikjaer@navicet.com. Let’s talk!

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Originally published at www.navicet.com.