leadership | June 20, 2013

Innovative Design Comes From Embracing Multiple Perspectives: John Maeda

"Ultimately, good design will be born from consideration of multiple perspectives," leadership speaker John Maeda writes in Wired. "It should be something we haven’t even dreamed of yet." He adds: "What we need now is to move beyond the superficial conversation about styles and incremental adjustments to boldly invent the next frontier of interface design." In his article, Maeda explains that good design moves beyond the reductionist way of thinking. It draws inspiration from a variety of sources, and it's steered by leaders with contrasting styles of mentoring and thought-processes.

Maeda recently spoke at the Creative Leadership Summit. Presented by Ogilvy & Mather and Fast Company, the Cannes-based event focused on the adoption of out-of-the-box leadership techniques. Maeda, a proponent of creative leadership, explained that there is still value in traditional authoritative leadership. Sometimes, a straight-forward, hierarchical approach is needed for the development of a certain product or project. On the other hand, creative leadership that doesn't rely on hierarchies is also important to the innovation process. You can't afford to run your team by relying solely on one leadership style or the other. "You have to bridge the qualitative and the quantitative," Maeda says.

Maeda, the president of the Rhode Island School of Design, is well-respected both for his insight on design and technology as well as leadership. Whether he's speaking about the way art and design are becoming integral to the future of innovation or how we can incorporate creative leaders into industry, his keynotes are forward-thinking with a wealth of key takeaways. He inspires audiences to look at creativity differently—and to imagine the possibilities new ways of thinking can hold.

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