Embrace your crazy and unlock your creativity
Stephen Gates, the head of design transformation at InVision, says too many companies underestimate the time and effort needed to be genuinely creative and as a result innovative. He calls creativity a “blue collar profession,” because of the work it requires. He argues that most companies employ creatives to make products look great, but few are hired higher up in the production process to help with the inception of a product.
Gates also contends that companies need to balance their reliance on data with creativity. Many companies, he says, focus too granularly on data and become “data blind” leaving them with a “myopic” view on their customers. Meanwhile, sheer creativity without any data to guide it, risks the creative missing the mark completely.
Finally, Gates argues that social media isn’t helping creativity, as it's simply too easy to shoot down revolutionary ideas before they’ve had a chance to take hold. Also, social media amplifies the wrong parts of the creative process. It doesn’t show the “90 per cent” of the process that is reworking and iterating ideas, and makes it seem easier than it is.
Time to split your thinking on Gen Z
Sarah Owen, senior editor of WSGN spends her days talking to US teenagers to determine future consumer trends. While she concedes that even her own husband thinks her job can be a bit creepy at time, it unearths a myriad of fresh insights on the consumers of tomorrow.
As Owen revealed, for the first time in their study, WSGN has broken down Gen Z into two catagories: Gen Me and Gen We.
Gen Me is what many would expect. They chase insta-fame, they spend big on fashion. They follow influencers, and emulate them.
Gen We however shops with both their heart and their head. They don’t boycott brands, they ‘buycott’ them, supporting products that they feel positively contribute to society. They are cause driven, and care less about appealing to the masses via social media. They prefer to repair clothes rather replace them and (in another first for teenage consumer trends), tend to spend more on food than fashion.
Check your bias
If you’re wondering what passes for water cooler talk at the tech giants these days, it’s bias.
Most of our bias is unintentional, and subliminal but they have a huge impact on how we perceive the world and how we build products.
Emily Price from Microsoft For Startup contends that startups need to consider bias in both their product design and hiring practices to get ahead.
Meanwhile, Ricardo Prada Director of UX for Google says that understanding and accounting for bias is one of the biggest hurdles in the further development of machine learning. Without this understanding, we risk creating machine learning algorithms that discriminate.