Why design is great for positive impact.
As the world becomes more complex, so do its challenges and the number of stakeholders. We believe that design is capable of tackling these global complex challenges with a multitude of stakeholders since:
- Design is a creative way to simplify and solve complex problems;
- Design takes a holistic, user-centred approach while ensuring value for all major stakeholders; and
- Design solutions are co-created, which increases alignment, commitment and positive impact.
Why positive impact needs to be tangible.
Positive impact is like teenage sex: everybody says they’re doing it, hardly anyone is actually doing it, and the ones who are doing it, don’t know what they’re doing. It’s no wonder that people within organisations are struggling to put positive impact on the agenda; it’s fluffy, hard to measure and has no concrete starting point.
Based on our own experience, we suggest the following key elements to help you get started:
- Develop a strong company wide purpose that translates back to individual teams and projects;
- Adopt a simple framework to get everyone on the same page about the goals of the organisation; and
- Set measurable goals when it comes to positive impact; and
- Leverage the right tools to make and measure your impact.
Our framework for positive impact.
We’ve developed a framework that provides focus and inspiration when using design specifically to solve global, complex challenges. As design consultants, we believe that we can have a positive impact on:
- the business of our clients;
- the employees of our clients;
- our end-users in the short term;
- our end-users in the long-term;
- planet earth; and
- our society as a whole.
Our tools for positive impact.
Based on the positive impact framework, we’ve created several tools to use before, during, and after a project.
One of these tools is a kick-off tool to help us set goals together with our clients at the beginning of a project. Another tool is a survey to help us make realistic estimations of our positive (and potentially negative) impact after a project has been completed. And last but not least, we are creating a tracking tool to help us and our clients measure the positive impact a project has made after it has been implemented in the real world.
Ultimately, these tools along with the positive impact framework enable us make the world measurably better by design.