Day 1 – Framing Tomorrow by Questioning Today

Dealing with our own version of hell, these couple of years — and it isn’t just COVID; racism, corrosive influence of politicians, twisted nature of nuclear armed greed.

Ask more philosophical questions – What matters to me? Why am I doing this? Ability to question internal and external worlds is central to our humanity. Questions are catalysts of curiosity. 

Asking questions — begins much before we even understand, as kids, we ask Why’s all the time.

It is a provocative act — challenging the status quo.

Questions, good questions, born to genuine curiosity help you to learn about something new. They give birth to better stories. Bad questions are self-serving and corrosive.

Design org, research participants, job applicants — who do you see? More importantly, who do you not see? and Why do you not see them? None of us chose the field of design because it is easy!

De facto ethicist — an additional responsibility, we, as designers take. Keenly aware of power and responsibility to create experiences at scale.

Ethical tightrope — enterprise leaders have to walk-through.

We need to ask an important supplementary question after – how might we? What would happen if design had universal ethics? After all, we are not just a pair of hands, aren’t we?

How do we get a seat at the table — no one wants to be picked last, it hurts. And it leads to dark places. In this echo chamber of ours, especially in this topic, we might sound a little obsessive, slightly desperate, and a bit toxic.

Boundaries are important. Knowing where participation in design ends and expertise begins is critical. Instead of fighting for a seat at the table, we can create our own.

The questions you are asking and the stories, are they serving you?

  1. Are they helping you to be a better designer to shape a better world?
  2. Are they moving you and the field forward? Or do they limit the options available?
  3. Do they curb your potential of impact?
  4. Are they circular in nature?

Design is a story, one that’s always being written by people like you and me. If we don’t like what we are reading, then it is on us to change what we’re writing. Listen for underlying stories about design, how and why do you feel about them? Then, make a choice.

Choose to edit your story, create a better frame for tomorrow.