World House Interdesign 2007: Day 4,5 & 6

10Jul07

So the final three days were a whirlwind of activity. We finally narrowed down our designs and began working on the final presentation. Two key lessons surfaced from this last push.

  1. I was torn with our final proposal. Although I saw the value in it, I thought we were jumping the gun. Our design called for a cart that enabled park visitors to have a table, power source and water that they could take anywhere in the park. This was a great idea that was executed well by the team; I thought it was too much, too soon. Although I tried to voice my concerns as soon as possible, those who were onboard were passionately disagreeing. This was encouraging and forced me to examine their points, however after thinking it through I still thought that the park needed to enter into the public consciousness before anyone would even use these carts. After my concerns were heard, we had to move on because of time constraints. Because work had already been done to develop the cart, we went with it because our manager felt the pressure of time. This was a clear demonstration of the different mindsets in our group, some were of the efficiency mindset and some (mainly myself) were of the effectiveness mindset. I tried to prove to others that although their design was great it wasn’t the solution to our brief. This proved difficult and obviously I lost out, but that isn’t to say I didn’t walk away with something from it.
  2. The final day came and it was now time to present the flurry of activity in a clear and concise way. Our presentation went well and we won a few fans for our concepts. The other groups then presented and it was clear that some were able to portray the essence of their designs, while others came out fuzzy. The power of presentation is essential not only in design but also in business and the market. If someone doesn’t clearly grasp “the pitch” then they won’t understand the potential of it. Clarity is essential. In brief the best tip I can come up with for an effective presentation is “spell it out”. Take what you will from it.

Great experience and great people on the whole. We will have to wait and see if any of the designs get used.

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