I’m elevating the practice and impact of design for innovative businesses and the people they serve.
I’m helping teams make services, systems, processes, and artifacts that enrich experiences and produce value.
I’m crafting communications that crystallize strategy, simplify complexity, and energize audiences.
I’m operationalizing design – mediating business objectives and technology capabilities with user needs, brand intent with customer experience.
I’m building design-minded cultures and teams, shaped and fortified with human-centered principles, standards, and practices.
- Developed strategy, prototypes, and brand for Economist Intelligence Unit user community
- Reframed online survey initiative as an opportunity to create new value with a community and a brand
- Developed new user segmentation, user experience strategy, user process flows, program identity and strategy, visual prototypes, and visual design system
Building and branding an online user community for a globally respected information powerhouse
The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) is the foremost provider of economic information to governments, schools, and businesses worldwide, specializing in country reports and economic forecasting. Subscribers include heads of libraries, heads of state, academics, journalists, and many others with a vested interest in timely, incisive information about the global economy. The Economist sought to engage with this varied audience, to learn more about their needs and preferences, and to provide additional value to subscribers.
The challenge was to engage users of serious content without unduly interrupting their experience and without compromising the eminent stature of The Economist brand. (Convenient as web app survey tools are, there was something incongruous and inappropriate about the idea of embedding one of these often cheekily styled survey tools in a web experience having real gravitas.) As the initiative partner working with the CTO, my design team recognized the need for more than just a survey tool. We developed a platform strategy that rewards community participation with community insights and develops the EIU as a resource of people and events, as well as information.
After extensive mapping of user types, needs, and opportunities, we created The Exchange, a combination of unobtrusive, optional online survey tools with instant feedback, and a portal for reviewing current poll results, requesting new insights, and connecting with the community of economics experts. We developed a multi-phase plan for platform design, incremental rollout of the program, and prototypes for the beta web tools, in development.
Getting over 100 enterprise websites on the same page with the ultimate standards and practices manual
After the web exploded in the nineties, many global enterprises were faced with centralizing and standardizing a global online presence that had grown organically out of necessity and experiential disharmony that had proliferated as a result. I led a multidisciplinary senior design team that audited over 120 corporate and country websites, synthesized the content and functionality, and created the comprehensive Web Book of global standards and practices for Nokia on the web.
I spent two months in Finland helping Nokia operationalize the new unified guidelines and build the organization to support them. This super-manual contained state-of-the-art instructions and examples of brand standards, content strategy, information architecture, site development, and visual design. The new guidelines and supporting organization restored unity and established a centralized system of enterprise web design for the future.
- Led multidisciplinary team of information architects, brand strategists, visual designers, and site developers to create comprehensive style guide content and examples
- Deployed standards to country and product web teams worldwide
- Established web design standards help desk and standards team at world headquarters
- Supported W.K. Kellogg Foundation with design guidance and leadership as innovation partner to the New Options initiative, a cohort of six organizations focused on the issue of young people disconnected from school and work
- Propagated design thinking and developed the strategic platform for building new career networks
- Facilitated workshops of up to 100 participants
Using design thinking and methods to reshape how philanthropy tackles a massive social issue
I led my team in support of W.K. Kellogg Foundation as innovation partner to the New Options initiative, a cohort of six community organizations from all over the U.S., focused on the issue of young people disconnected from school and work. We propagated design thinking throughout the endeavor and developed the strategic platform for building new networks of employment – a “career system” alternative to the traditional education system. We facilitated problem-solving workshops of up to 100 participants, including CEOs and disconnected young people all affected by this school-to-work crisis.
In addition to conceiving dozens of innovative prototypes for solving aspects of the wickedly complex problem, we outlined the platform and assets for an ongoing program that would enable new organizations and grantees to latch on, ramp up quickly, and fast-track the positive effects on young people’s lives. The platform launched several youth-serving organizations and continuing initiatives, and the system- and design-thinking instilled in the two-year engagement continues to influence the foundation’s approach to designing and evaluating its programs.
Over a decade of transformative strategy and design for the world’s largest hotel company
Through over 60 projects that ranged from developing user-testing materials and creating interface concepts for its first serious mobile application to an extensive initiative to define the future business processes for its mission-critical Revenue Management practice, I have helped to instill human-centered principles and design thinking at Marriott International to influence executive leadership and transform the ways Marriott IT and business groups organize projects, define goals, and measure success.
My teams and I have designed industry-leading innovations for mission-critical enterprise tools, instituted standards and style guides in multiple departments, led strategy and innovation workshops to define the future of the business, created and tested prototypes for the Marriott mobile app, redesigned the global navigation on Marriott.com, and provided design consulting to numerous other teams and initiatives.
Along the way, we enhanced Marriott implementation of Rational and Agile methodologies with customized user-centered design methods and practices. We facilitated dozens of requirements- and problem-definition workshops as user experience advocates, mediating business and technology requirements. And we observed shifts in enterprise culture as business and IT leaders adopted user-centered design thinking and design-driven project mindsets. Redesign of One Yield, the company’s mission-critical Revenue Management system and the engine of the enterprise, received a CIO Enterprise Value Award from CIO magazine.
Most recently, as Marriott became the largest hospitality company in the world through acquisition of Starwood, I was a facilitator of extensive sessions with Revenue Management experts to define and visualize the future of the business – we fleshed out future business processes, documented the resulting process flows and user needs in a custom website (coaching the business team on its own content contributions), and designed a book illustrated with new interface concepts to showcase and clarify how the new processes might look and work in accord with the future business vision.
- Led multidisciplinary design teams through 60+ engagements over twelve years
- Information architecture, visual design systems, global navigation for Marriott.com, user research, mobile app design, strategy consulting, visioning workshops, future business process design, internal communications videos
- Shaped program management culture in IT and business with design thinking and human-centered design methods to become user-focused and design-minded