By Vicki Matranga, Design Programs Coordinator
At the 2013 International Home + Housewares Show, the Innovation Theater in the Lakeside Center will present 21 educational programs, every hour beginning Saturday morning and ending Tuesday afternoon. At the Theater, located in Room E350 (near the entry to the Level 3 Lobby), experts in new product development and launch will discuss critical and timely topics in our industry. As the Show approaches, we introduce you to the presenters with a series of interviews. Be sure to mark your calendars for these exciting programs! Check www.housewares.org regularly for updates on the schedule of Show events
How to Apply Design Thinking To Transform Innovation for Market Leading Brands
Tuesday, March 5 11:30 am – 12:20 pm
As Managing Partner of Wallace Church– a Manhattan and San Francisco-based brand identity strategy and package design consultancy– Rob has worked with some of the world’s smartest and most successful global brand builders including Procter & Gamble, Nestle, PepsiCo, Bacardi, Bayer and more. Rob is on the board of directors of the Design Management Institute and has spoken at industry symposia across the U.S., the UK, Europe, South America and Asia. He lectures at the Columbia Business School MBA and Executive MBA programs, Georgetown University, University of Texas and other leading marketing and innovation programs.
Rob will deconstruct how design thinking works, how it compliments analytical thinking and how it can synthesize a solution team. He will provide real-world insights on how building design thinking into every business decision can result in more effective solutions faster and more efficiently. Having been part of identifying the solution sets, design thinking can then most successfully drive the implementation process. You will learn how to incorporate design-thinking in order to target the richest new brand opportunities, build an integrated innovation team, ensure the brand experience is relevant in all markets, extend the brand to new consumer targets and optimize innovation’s return on investment.
Rob, what inspires your passion in your work?
When created correctly, brand identity and package design generate a higher return on investment than any other branding effort, bar none. I am passionate about proving that to the business community and establishing best practices to achieve this unparalleled impact.
Why did you choose to speak at the International Home + House wares Show?
To inspire leading hard goods industry leaders to think differently- to think like designers. To provide design thinking’s methodology and trace its impact not just on “creative” issues but as a revolutionary problem solving strategy for every complex business issue.
Tell us what you will be speaking about and how and this topic is important for Show audiences.
Design is too often thought of as an artifact, a noun, a result. When in fact, design, in its most powerful form, is actually a process, a verb and a way of making decisions. And this new problem solving process is as effective for design and branding related issues as it is for virtually every other complex business problem, specifically in developing disruptive innovation for the hardware category.
I will define Design Thinking, contrasting it to analytical thinking and will provide the 10 best practices for using it across the innovation process. I will use case studies relevant to the hard goods category including work done for The Home Depot and others
This is your first time presenting at our Theater. What are you looking forward to most from speaking at the Innovation Theater?
This will be the first of what I hope will be many opportunities to share insights with IHA’s audience. I most look forward to collaborating with and motivating others to adapt my best practices. I look forward to them sharing the results with me as together we build upon my now rich database on design and design thinking’s ROI.
How does the Innovation Theater help you spread your message?
It attracts industry mavericks from the hard goods category. It’s time that the hard goods marketing team behaves like market leaders from high involvement brands and use design thinking to change the game
What kind of impact can the speakers of the Innovation Theater make at the Show?
We can build affinity among industry thought leaders and change the way the industry does business.
What do you see as consumers’ biggest concerns regarding house wares products?
Too many brands are benefit driven and lack the emotional engagement that defines a true brand.
What are some of today’s trends or issues that new product development professionals face in the house wares market?
Create a compelling brand message that drives consumer affinity. People define themselves by the strong brands (I am an Apple advocate, I own a Dyson, I drink Grey Goose). We need that level of affinity across the hard goods category.
What is the best advice you could give someone trying to get into your area of expertise?
What you did last time is probably no longer relevant. Don’t base decisions on what worked. Base them on the ideal possible–what could happen– and then make it work.
Thank you, Rob, for giving us a preview of your design thinking. We look forward to our program Tuesday, March 5 at 11:30 a.m. to learn more about how to apply these techniques for business success.
Contact Rob directly
Wallace Church, Inc.
330 East 48th Street
New York, NY 10017
O: 212-755-2903 x121
Learn more at www.wallacechurch.com