Colin Burns, Director of Stuff - Elmwood
Colin is a collaborative designer, innovator, educator and Elmwood’s Director of Stuff. He spent most of his career at IDEO, the international design consultancy, where he held posts as Global Head of Interaction Design and Head of IDEO London. Colin was part of the IDEO senior team who worked closely with Procter & Gamble to develop their innovation culture and new product development strategy. He is the visiting Professor of Innovation Product Design at Dundee University and has lectured around the world, from California to Taiwan. When at home in Highland Perthshire, Colin can be found playing bass with his dodgy cover band, The Fat Dads.
I've been working in the design industry for 25 years now. 2012 is my career Silver Jubilee..! So, I feel I should try to do something to celebrate this. Joining the DBA board would fit the bill...
I'm lucky enough to have had a very diverse working experience. As a result I think I can see creativity from multiple perspectives. Client and agency side, US & UK, private and public sector, education & practise, 3D & 2D design disciplines. I'd like to take these perspectives and put something back into the creative industry that had given me them in the first place.
Erika Clegg, Founder - Spring
Erika’s love of the industry started with voracious reading of Campaign and Creative Review and a fascination with agency showreels from the age of 12.
After spending school and university holidays on creative internships in advertising and design agencies, she joined AMD as a graduate trainee in 1994. The highly profitable agency’s acquisition by Chime Communications coincided with her promotion to account director. By the age of 25, Erika was client services director at
Attik, the multi-award winning global design agency.
Erika launched Spring in 2005, deciding upon Southwold rather than London for a number of reasons, some to do with business growth opportunity and some to do with community responsibility. Erika’s position as business development and creative head of the agency saw it grow from nothing to a Design Week top 100 agency in just five years, employing a growing team of highly skilled people and even allowing Erika to pick up an IOD businesswoman of the year award. She is a stickler for quality, results and creative
open-mindedness and advocates that all Springers aspire to ‘be extraordinary’.
Erika also spearheads the agency’s CSR activities, writes for industry and regional publications, and is a board director of the New Anglia LEP. She lives in the countryside just outside Southwold with her children and husband (Spring’s Simon Hazelgrove).
Since launching Spring, the DBA has been a consistent supporter, advisor and friend. In addition I see that the DBA has the power to do more than support agencies, but to act as a force for change for the industry as whole.
My personal interests have grown to include a board directorship of the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership, which has given me an insight into the opportunities for business growth in the industry regionally but also across the UK. A current research project has allowed me to understand barriers to growth common to all
agencies, and against which I believe the DBA is our strongest weapon.
So why the board, when I have an agency to run, two counties to help out and a young family to care for? In the LEP we call in Enlightened Self Interest. In being part of a catalyst for change, I can support Spring’s growth alongside that of all my colleagues across the industry.
I’ve never been a fan of sitting back and leaving it to other people, and I see this opportunity to sit on the DBA board as my opportunity to spearhead growth, industry-wide.
Simon Farrell, Managing Director - Tayburn
Simon is currently Managing Director of Tayburn, one of the UK’s most effective design agencies with offices in Edinburgh, Manchester and Istanbul. It’s a position he has held for 7 years. From an academic perspective, Simon gained a first class honours degree in Business Studies from Sheffield University and followed this up years later by studying for an MBA at Warwick University.
From a practitioner perspective, he has over 20 years brand strategy development and implementation experience. He’s worked client side for Scottish & Newcastle (now Heineken UK) and agency side for BDH/TBWA, The Chase and now Tayburn. In this time he has delivered large scale and complex brand strategy and communication plans for The Co-operative Bank, Yorkshire Water, John West and BT.
In more recent years he has led equally complex and large scale brand projects for Scottish Government, Scottish Water, University of Highlands and Islands, Diageo, Glasgow Caledonian University, University of Edinburgh, City of Stirling, British Council, Glasgow Life and is currently developing the brand and communication strategy for Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.
Outside of work he is a busy father of 4, an avid Manchester United fan and would-be DJ.
I’m a fanatic believer in the transformational impact design businesses can have on their clients’ organisations. The hundreds of fantastic case studies presented via the DBA Effectiveness awards lay as testament to the power of our combined strategic and creative ideas.
If only the business world shared that same belief.
There seems to be a huge gulf in the perceptions many clients have of what design is and does and what I know we can do and the value we bring. That’s certainly the picture from my experience working in the North of England and Scotland.
I believe a lot of the great work that comes from the regions doesn't get the recognition it deserves. That’s why I’ve represented DBA at a regional level for a number of years. Firstly as North West representative whilst working at The Chase and now as Scotland Representative at Tayburn.
As an industry we are all too often perceived as decorators rather than communicators. Possibly something we don’t help ourselves with in the way we articulate the value we deliver. My goal has been to make sure we challenge those perceptions and drive up standards. Firstly, from within my own business and then encouraging others to do the same.
By bringing my combined client and agency perspectives and my experiences from the regions I hope to provide the DBA board with valuable insights and opinion. And, if I can in some small way help reverse those misguided perceptions, then I think that would be a job well done.
Steve Gibbons, Manging Director - Dew Gibbons
Steve studied at the Royal College of Art. On graduation in 1982 he was invited by his tutor Brian Tattersfield to join Minale Tattersfield.
He joined The Partners in 1984, becoming a partner in 1986. He founded Dew Gibbons with Shaun Dew in 1997.
Steve has won many design awards including two D&AD Silvers and Design Week and Design Effectiveness awards. He has been a member of the D&AD executive, serving also as Chairman of its Education Committee and has been external assessor at Kingston University. He writes and speaks widely on design and health & beauty industry related issues.
Steve lives in the country with his wife, 2 children, several cats and a collection of aesthetically chosen, but almost entirely unproductive, chickens.
The design business has given me a very rewarding career over the last 30 years I’d like to now put something back.
In particular I’d like to represent ambitious businesses that are keen to grow. Either growth in terms of their professionalism – the services they offer and the manner in which they conduct their businesses – and/or growth in commercial terms. I’d like to both learn from this process and use my experience of establishing and growing a business – with all the incumbent pitfalls along the way – to help others.
I see training, mentoring and access to industry data and expertise as critical to the role the DBA plays and I can see that still more can be done to refine, develop and extend these services.
I’d also like to see how the DBA can better support our client’s businesses in their endeavours to evaluate the effectiveness of design and tease out that effect from the rest of the marketing mix. Ground that has no doubt been covered before but that is still worth much more focus and effort if design is to continue to be seen as relevant and to offer a valuable ROI for our clients.
Oliver King, Director - Engine Service Design
Oliver King is a co-founder and Director of Engine, a service design and innovation consultancy based in London. He leads Engine's private sector practice and is also responsible for developing the team and overseeing day-to-day business management.
Oliver studied industrial design at Central Saint Martin's College of Art and Design and graduated in 1992 to win the Young European Designer of the Year Award and Blueprint magazines Graduate of the Year Award. His first experience of professional design involved founding several design businesses and trying to launch his own product. They all failed. Lessons were learned and it was time to try again. Realising a bit of experience was probably missing Oliver joined Priestman Goode and spent eight years learning the ropes of professional design practice culminating in accepting a directorship to Plant - Priestman Goode's manufacturing management company.
During that time Oliver returned to school studying under Naomi Gornick and Bill Hollins at Brunel University to complete a MA with distinction in Design Strategy and Innovation.
Whilst at Brunel, Oliver began to question and explore the role of design in business. He was curious about the impact that technology was having on design process and how agency business models and ways of working were shaping design outcomes that were not necessarily in the best interests of their clients. In 2000 he co-founded Engine who are now renowned for being one of the foremost service design and innovation consultancies in the world.
Engine work to help organisations understand where, when as how they can improve their customers' experiences’ making them more meaningful and valuable. This means they not only engage in the design and specification of customer journeys and service ecosystems, but also in designing the business that surrounds the proposition — remodelling processes, business models and corporate cultures within organisations. In this way Engine are often pitched against the management consultancies and advertising agencies to win work.
Oliver's clients include SMEs, public bodies and global brands. He’s designed for retailers and restaurants; airports, airlines and automotive brands; technology, entertainment and utilities companies and finance, product and manufacturing businesses.
In addition, Oliver has presented a TV series on design (Made for the Masses), he co-chaired the 2011 DMI Conference in London and is a sought after international speaker on Service Design and innovation.
It’s an exciting time for design. The sector is broadening, new disciplines are emerging and businesses are realising that designers can work with them on new types of projects in ways they’ve never done before. It’s also a challenging time for design. Recent years have forced us all to reset our view of what ‘normal’ looks like, what we need to do to compete and we’re all busy trying to build teams, networks and processes that are going to work well in uncertain times.
So it’s typical: the biggest opportunity for design has arrived alongside the biggest challenge that design businesses have had to face for many years. And if that’s the case, helping design thrive has never been more important for the DBA.
I’d like to help on several fronts. Firstly I’d like to help designers get better at working together. Clients want more and they want it faster and with less notice. They have interconnected problems, which need interdisciplinary solutions, so we need to explore and understand how to better serve them through inter-agency collaboration, sharing knowledge and experience in ways that are profitable and productive for all concerned.
Secondly I think is design is rendezvousing with management sciences and it can only be a good thing. In preparation I’d like to help us connect better with the edges of our sector and the adjacent disciplines that can support us. I’m concerned that if we’re not careful we’ll become too centred on traditional disciplines and will miss developing a proper coupling to processes and projects that we need to be part of.
And finally I’d like to help us determine our own future before someone else does. What is design in the UK all about, what should we be known for and how do we do it?
It’s an exciting time for Design. It’s an exciting time for the DBA.
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